W E D N E S D A Y  W E E K L Y
April 1, 2015
In This Issue

Upcoming Events

March 30-April 2 
Spirit Week
Tomorrow is "School Spirit Day" - wear your WMS gear!

April 2
Tony Vacca Family Concert
6:15 p.m. in the Great Room

April 3
Building Closed  - No school or child-care.

April 6
No school.
Pre-registered child-care only.

April 7
First State Ballet Performance at WMS 

April 8
Montessori "Play & Learn" - Brandywine Hundred Library
10:30 or 11:15 a.m. 

April 9
Toddler Sing-a-Long
11 a.m., Great Room

April 10
The Journey
8:30 a.m.
Register Now

April 13-17
ERB Testing

April 14 & 15
Childfind Testing

April 18
WMS Auction

April 22
Earth Day

April 23
3-6 Concert
9:30 a.m., Great Room


Message from 
Director of Extended Day Programs
Cass Winner 



As the first green shoots finally push their way through the early spring mud, parents are inundated with marketing by summer camps. One will make your child a soccer star; another will instill him with stellar character traits. How do you decide whether to send your child to camp at all, much less where?

Research shows that attending a well-run summer camp improves children's friendship skills, confidence, independence, connection with nature and willingness to try new things. You can read the 2005 American Camp Association study for the results of their three-year survey of 8- to 14-year-olds here.


WMS is not a typical school, of course, and our school-year curriculum incorporates many elements that children from non-Montessori schools don't get to experience: support in the growth of independence, hands-on activities, time outdoors, emphasis on collaboration over competition, and a strong social curriculum where time is taken to help children learn to navigate their communities with kindness and confidence. So what more can summer give them?


This will be my 17th year of heading Camp Montessori. What we offer in the summer is the best of both worlds: the consistent leadership of year-round Wilmington Montessori teachers and assistant teachers with the addition of new staff, new activities and materials, and much more time spent outdoors, both on our beautiful campus and on field trips. The addition of teachers from other schools, college students and junior counselors (graduates of our Counselor in Training course who are often also WMS graduates) brings fresh energy and enthusiasm to enrich our already wonderful curriculum.


Children - from toddlers through young teens  - get the benefit of feeling at home in their own school while tackling new challenges, helping to build a new and different community, welcoming new campers and helping them to feel at home, as well. They demonstrate their leadership skills - even the youngest ones - by helping newcomers and working with staff to refine the direction of their group's activities. Each week is a new beginning, with new adventures to try and new friends to make... but it's all done within the warm and familiar cradle of the WMS family.


One of our commitments to parents is to offer high-quality programming to WMS students 50 weeks per year, and Camp Montessori is a dynamic and essential part of this promise. It is also a way that parents whose children are not - or not yet - WMS students can join us, whether it's for just a week or for the whole summer.  Many times, a family has come to us for the first time through camp. 


Camp is another facet of the jewel that is WMS. Whether you want a full-time program, a month of enrichment, or a week of Showstoppers, don't miss it!





News & NotesNews
WMS Family Concert Featuring Tony Vacca
Tomorrow at 6:15 p.m.


The sounds of African drumming filled the halls of WMS earlier this month as Tony Vacca worked with your children (and their teachers) during the first day of his residency - now it's your turn to hear him perform!


Tony Vacca is an innovative American percussionist with jazz and world music roots going back to 1972. His solo performances are a nearly non-stop athletic spectacle of percussion music and spoken word. He incorporates percussion instruments from a world of traditions that include African, Caribbean, Asian and Middle-Eastern influences, to which he adds some of his spoken word and rhythm poetry. Tony's 14 trips to West Africa have contributed to his unique approach to playing the balafon, and to his depth of knowledge regarding African and American musical traditions. 

As part of the concert, 9-12 students will be performing with Tony. We hope to see you there!


This program is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency dedicated to nurturing and supporting the arts in Delaware, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts.   
Auction Spotlight
Creative Capes™: Help your child find the hero within™


Donations for WMS's biggest fundraising event of the year, the Bidding on the Bayou Auction Gala, have come from some pretty cool businesses, and this week, we are spotlighting Creative Capes. 


Entrepreneur Holly Hagen has donated one of her high-quality superhero capes to this year's silent auction. Each cape has a Velcro closure for safety, is lined with satin and is washable. Accessories include a custom mask, belt and wrist cuffs.   

Winners of this awesome gift can also have the cape monogrammed with their child's first initial! Creative Capes - just one more great reason to buy your tickets now at www.wmsde.org/auction.


For more information about Creative Capes, please visit www.creativecapes.com.

Want to learn more about the auction and receive regular updates? Be sure to join our Bidding on the Bayou event on Facebook.


Co-op Cornerco-op
Bidding on the Bayou Auction Support 


Here is your chance to work side-by-side with wonderful people, participate in the most important community fundraising effort of the year and also fulfill your family's Co-op commitment. We need as many volunteers as possible - in advance of, during and after the auction. There's a job for every volunteer and to suit every schedule.

Co-op volunteers are particularly needed to help with:

  • Setting up and decorating - especially on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (April 15, 16 and 17). No special skills are required and volunteers may work according to their schedules and availability. Every hour of preparation counts!
  • Serving drinks and refreshments at the auction on April 18. Again, training will be provided; no special experience or skill sets are necessary - just a willingness to volunteer and join in the fun. 
Please email [email protected] or see Laurie Orsic if you would like to volunteer.
Today's LearnersLearner
Toddlers loved visiting Room 17's rainforest biome.View more photos on Facebook.
Seeing the World with Wonderment and Awe
by Room 17 Lead Teachers Arlene Wason & Erin Winner

Wilmington Montessori School's mission statement states that we "inspire the joyful discovery of self and a passion for learning and independent thinking. We empower children to be knowledgeable and responsible contributors to the global community."

This aspect of our mission is accomplished through the cultural curriculum. 
Maria Montessori advocated teaching children about the unity of all living things on Earth, in the hope that children would discover and develop a deep respect for the beauty and wonder of nature. Students at WMS gain a deep understanding of how plants, animals and humans relate to the natural environment, and through science, they learn how nature works.

Children between the ages of 5 and 9 are keenly interested in plants and animals, geography, and weather phenomena. This perfect combination of interests leads us in our cultural studies as we examine continents through the lens of biomes.

A biome is a large geographical area with distinctive plants and animals that have adapted to that particular environment The climate and geography of a region determine what kind of biome can exist in that region. In our biome studies, our goal is to help students understand that biomes are diverse, unique and interdependent eco-systems and that their protection and conservation are critical for all living things. Our living world is always in a state of change. The essential questions we seek to answer in our biome studies focus on how living things both adapt and change the world around them, how living things are interdependent and what impact humans have on a biome. This year, Room 17 students identified biomes around the world, and then biomes specific to our continent studies of Africa and Australia.The children learned to locate the continent on a globe and map, locate familiar biomes (e.g., grasslands, desert, tropical forests, mountains) on a map of the continent, describe a familiar biome in terms of the climate, physical characteristics and location, and name some of the plants and animals that live there. Our culminating class project for our study of Australia was to create a "natural history museum" exhibit of a rainforest biome found in Queensland, Australia. Each child chose an animal to research and then created a 3D scale model with art teacher Laurie Mulhbauer. 


Upon completion of their animal for the biome, each child worked on the various pieces of the background to create the canopy of the rainforest. Finally, each child used the iPad to create an audio recording sharing interesting facts they discovered about their particular animal. Using the QR app on the iPad, visitors to our rainforest could hear the children talk about their animal. Additionally, the children practiced their public speaking skills while providing guided tours of the rainforest to other classrooms. Through this project, it is hoped that we have contributed to the child's continued wonderment and awe for the natural world around us and to their understanding of the responsibility we have to protect and preserve these fragile and amazing biomes that make up our world.


Tomorrow's LeadersLeaders
Coming Soon... An Alumni Survey 


WMS is in the process of developing a survey to learn about many of our constituents and their experiences and opinions about WMS. We would like to include as many alumni as possible. If you are an alumnus and did not receive an email invitation to our Alumni Pizza Party or our holiday e-card earlier this year, please contact us at [email protected]


Parents, if you have a child who graduated from WMS, please send us his or her direct email address if he or she has one and would like to participate.  Thanks!

The Wednesday Weekly shares WMS news and events that are relevant to the families in our community.  

Please send submissions to [email protected] by 4:30 p.m. on the Friday prior to the issue in which you wish to include your information. Content may be edited for length  and style and may be held for a future issue due to space constraints.  

For more information, contact Noel Dietrich, Director of Communications.

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