W E D N E S D A Y  W E E K L Y
November 18, 2015
In this Issue

Upcoming Events

November 19
Rising 6-9 Transition Morning
9 a.m., starting in library
Learn More

November 24
Grandfriends' Day
8:30 a.m.
Learn More

November 25
No school.
Pre-registered child-care available.

November 26-27
No school or child-care.
Building closed.

December 1
Parent Education Webinar: Reading with Young Children
7:30 p.m., Online
December 3
Celebration of Reading/Book Fair
3-7 p.m. in the Great Room
Learn More

Primary/Elementary Maker Faire
5-6:15 p.m.
What's Next?
Transition Mornings 
Message from 
Head of School Lisa Lalama
Read more from Lisa at on our Montessori Message blog.
Walking through the hallways at WMS, we see children of all ages. When our own children are little, we cannot imagine that they will one day be as big as the 9-12 students...or as boisterous and energetic. Then, the day comes and they are the oldest students in the school and getting ready to graduate and move on to middle school. It is hard to recall the time when they were the smallest in the building. Thankfully, it takes 12 years for that to happen and, as parents, you have the opportunity to learn and grow with them.

This week offered you time to learn about the next stage for your child. We have held transition mornings: toddler to 3-6, kindergarten to 6-9 (tomorrow), and 6-9 to 9-12. Last week, parents of rising fourth-graders attended a Information Night in the Great Room while their children enjoyed activities in the Elementary Maker (STEAM) Studio. These events are opportunities to learn more about what to expect at the next program level for your child. As you know, just when you "get things down" at your child's current age and stage of development, they move on to the next one. Participating in these transition events is one way to begin to understand what lies ahead.

We hope that you had the opportunity to attend one of the transition mornings this week or are able to make it to one of the upcoming transition events in January and February. We do our best to share the differences in the classroom experience at the next level and to answer any questions you may have. As always, if you have additional questions or need to set up another time to visit the classrooms please let us know. We are happy to accommodate your schedule.

Upcoming Transition Events
November 19 - Transition Morning for Rising 6-9 Parents - 9 a.m.
January 7 - Information Night for Rising 6-9 Parents - 5-6 p.m.
January 13 - Information Night for Rising Kindergarten Parents - 5-6 p.m.
February 10 - Information Night for Rising 3-6 Parents - 5-6 p.m.
February 16 - Transition Morning for Rising 9-12 Parents - 9 a.m.
February 17 - Transition Morning for Rising 3-6 Parents - 9:30 a.m.
February 18 - Transition Morning for Rising 6-9 Parents - 9 a.m.

Please contact Shelby Kaufman to register.

Co-op Cornercoop
Parent Co-op Volunteers Urgently Needed for the WMS Reading Celebration on December 3! 

Would you like to participate in an enjoyable family event AND earn Co-op hours? Volunteers are needed to help with the WMS Reading Celebration on Thursday, December 3, from 3 to 7 p.m. Please sign up and join the party!

There is a sign up sheet on the Co-op bulletin board or you may contact Laurie Orsic at [email protected].
News & NotesNews

Recent events in Paris have made our world a little more unsettled and perhaps even frightening for many people. It is important to remember that overhearing TV news and adult conversations regarding these events can impact our littlest of listeners. Young children do not have the ability to understand these events, but they do, and will, pick up on the stress they have caused us.

This article offers some wonderful coping strategies for adults that will, in turn, help shield young children from the impact of events they cannot possibly comprehend. We hope you find it as helpful as well did!

Grandfriends' Day - Next Week!
November 24, 2015

8:15 - 11 a.m. 
(Elementary classrooms open at 8:30 a.m. & Early Childhood opens at 9 a.m.)

Grandfriends are special people in our children's lives - aunts and uncles, family friends, grandmothers and grandfathers, and even great-grandparents. Now's your chance to spend a fun-filled morning with your Montessori child and experience a glimpse into his or her daily school life. Enjoy refreshments,
activities with students, a special musical
performance and more! 

Please visit www.wmsde.org/grandfriends to RSVP.
Parent Education Webinar - Reading with Young Childrenwebinar
December 1 - 7:30 p.m.
Reading to your children can be more than just a part of the bedtime routine. It can be a bonding experience that, with a few extra ingredients, also boosts language development. 

Even if your children have already begun reading themselves, a read-aloud provides them with the foundations for future reading comprehension and writing success, all while appealing to their curiosity and sense of wonder.

Join us for WMS's second webinar for parents. In fewer than 30 minutes, you will learn how easy it can be to help your child build vocabulary and develop comprehension skills. You will also receive suggestions for creating a literacy rich home environment, book titles to keep an eye out for at the bookstore or local library, and an understanding of how language and literacy skills are fostered in and outside of the classroom. 

This webinar will be led by Early Childhood Education Director Sarah Williams and Assistant Head of School Laurie Orsic. A Q&A session will also be included.

Register Now Button
Please register in advance. After signing up, you will receive login instructions to ensure that you can access the webinar on the evening of the event.
Primary/Elementary Maker Fairemaker
5-6:15 p.m. - During the Celebration of Reading on December 3!

Join us for some STEAM fun during the Celebration of Reading and try out some of the hands-on materials your child is using in the Maker Studios like Osmo and Little Bits! 

Children and parents will have the opportunity to participate in some STEAM activities related to the books being read aloud including creating mitten ornaments to serve as obstacles for the Bee-Bot, painting using the Sphero robot and more. 
Today's LearnersLearner
Spanish Students Celebrate D�a de Los Muertos
by Spanish Teacher Ana Brown

The Spanish program at Wilmington Montessori School focuses on helping children to not only develop an understanding of the Spanish language, but also an awareness and appreciation for the cultures of various Spanish-speaking countries. One way we do this is by celebrating some of the holidays traditionally celebrated in these countries. 

This falI, we exposed elementary students to one of the most important holidays celebrated in Mexico and other areas of Latin America, as well as many U.S. cities with significant Hispanic populations. D�a de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is celebrated on November 1 and 2. The holiday honors deceased family members and friends, celebrating death as a normal and natural part of life. The celebration usually takes place in the graveyard where relatives and friends create altars filled with brightly colored flowers, papel picado, sugar skulls, pictures of the deceased and also their favorite foods.
I introduced this topic very carefully, as children can be very sensitive and, sometimes, not even familiar with the words "death," "graveyard," etc. Throughout the discussion, I was absolutely fascinated with the way students expressed their feelings and emotions about death. A few children mentioned pets that had passed away; others shared about a relative they had lost. Many of the children had never lost anyone but were also interested in learning more about the celebration.

To approach the topic in a way that would engage the students, we created a graphic to compare Halloween and D�a de los Muertos. The children found interesting facts about both traditions, and highlighted both similarities and differences. The students watched a beautiful short video called Di�a de los Muertos from Whoo Kazoo. The video was a big hit; they enjoyed watching and absorbing more about the tradition.
To conclude the discussion on this ritual, the students created and decorated one of the holiday's symbols: Mascaras de Calaveras (skull masks). In this cultural tradition, the skull is not meant to be scary. It simply represents the death of the body or the passing away of the person, and the decorative designs represent the beauty of their life. The purpose of this lesson was to show children how we can celebrate the lives of people who have died. Ask your child about the video and what they think about this holiday.
Tomorrow's Leadersleaders
Photo by Heather Siple (Becky's mom and WMS's official photographer)
WMS Alum/Assistant Teacher Rides to Victory at South Jersey Equestrian Competition

When she's not at Brandywine High School taking four AP classes or assisting in a WMS Extended Day classroom, Becky Siple (WMS '11) works (and practically lives) at Cloverleaf Stable in Chadds Ford.  

Not only does she have her own horse there, but Becky also helps care for 50 other horses at their three barns. She feeds them, blankets them, leads them all inside in foul weather and turns them back out in fair weather. She gives them routine medications, less routine medical care and occasional emergency first-aid.  She is training one young horse to be a safe mount and teaching adults and kids as young as 6 to be safe riders. She takes people out for trail rides and, most importantly, she practices for barrel races.

Becky is the 2015 South Jersey NBHA Youth Barrel Champion in her division. She considers this the start of a lifetime of working with horses. 
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.

Copyright � 2015. All Rights Reserved.