W E D N E S D A Y  W E E K L Y
February 24, 2016
In this Issue

Upcoming Events

February 25
Dads' Day
8:30-11 a.m.
See Lisa's message for more information.

The school store will be open during Dads' Day with sale prices on special close-out items!

February 26
Registration Deadline for the Meerkat Milers Relay Teams
Visit our Facebook event page or email meerkatmilers@wmsde.org 
for more information.

February 29
Parent Education Webinar: Montessori in the Home
7:30 p.m., online
Learn More

March 1
Re-enrollment Deadline for 2016-17 School Year
Please submit your paperwork and deposit on time to avoid a $100 late fee! Learn More

March 3
9-12 Maker Morning
7:45-8:30 p.m.
Room 30 
Parents welcome!

March 11
All-Staff Professional Day
No Child-Care Available


Message from Head of School
Lisa A. Lalama
Read more from Lisa on our Montessori Message blog.
Tomorrow is Dads' Day at WMS. Children look forward to welcoming their dads and other special adults into the classroom to get a glimpse of their school day. School is so important to the children, and inviting dads to be a student once again is great fun for all of us. Sitting in small chairs, singing along and sharing children's work are all part of the fun.

Although dads, moms and grandparents have lots of opportunities to be at WMS on a regular basis, the days that celebrate each of you and your relationship with your children are among the best days of the school year. Just as your children are excited to learn about what you do each day and maybe even go to your workplace, they love inviting you into their classroom... for it is truly their classroom and their school. It's where they make friends, discover more of the world by breaking the codes of language and numbers, and, most importantly, learn how to "work." Our classrooms offer uninterrupted periods of work during which children are learning to manage their time and efforts as they accomplish set tasks. At the youngest ages, they explore materials on the shelves that are designed with children's knowledge and skill acquisition in mind. As they get older, the work they engage in may look a bit different, but what doesn't change is the goal of children spending the time they need to experience the next area of development in their learning.

"The child can develop fully by means of experience in his environment. We call such experiences 'work.'"  - Maria Montessori

Have fun at work tomorrow!


Dads' Day Schedule
8:30-10 a.m. - Elementary Classroom Visits
8:45-10 a.m. - 3-6 Classroom Visits
9-10 a.m. - Toddler Classroom Visits
10-11 a.m. - Refreshments and a presentation in the Great Room.  
Co-op Cornercoop
Diversity Corner

Please stop by the Diversity Corner in the Birch Wing hallway to see the beautiful display prepared by WMS parent Gilles Auffret. As a 17-year-old, Gilles' brother Lucas traveled from France to the United States to learn about life on Native American reservations in Montana and South Dakota. Lucas' photographs are stunning and were featured in Inspired Eye magazine.
Special thanks go to Gilles for creating such an appealing display and for sharing his brother's remarkable photos and story with the WMS community. 
News & NotesNews
Re-enrollment Reminder: Contracts & Deposits Due Tuesday, March 1, 2016

The date for submitting contracts and deposits for the 2016-17 school year is Tuesday, March 1, 2016. The deposit secures your child's spot and supports the planning process for the new school year. In order to retain our amazing teaching staff, it is important that we are able to offer contracts as early as possible, which cannot be done until we have a clear idea of our enrollment numbers for next school year. After this deadline, we also begin to enroll new families and, therefore, your child's space cannot be guaranteed. We expect that some of our programs will be filled to capacity next year. In addition, first-round financial aid awards must also be accepted by this deadline or they will be re-allocated.

Please note that a $100 late fee will be assessed for all re-enrollment deposits not received by the due date. If you anticipate any problem with submitting your contract and deposit by March 1, please contact Nancy Oddo, Business Manager, at 302-475-0555 or at nancy_oddo@wmsde.org.

Webinar: Montessori in the Home
Monday, February 29 at 7:30 p.m.
Join us to find out how easy it is to bring Montessori ideas into your home. During this 30-minute webinar, you will receive suggestions for creating an environment at home for your child to gain skills in independence, coordination, concentration and a sense of order. You will also learn about the importance of setting limits, giving your child reasonable consequences, and making choices that will empower your child to feel like a responsible and important family member. 

This webinar will be led by Early Childhood Education Director Sarah Williams and Lead Primary (3-6) Teacher (and Montessori parent) Betsy Haas. 
Note: Because this workshop is offered online, it is important to register in advance so that you can receive your login information and test your system prior to the start of the webinar.
Register Now Button
Today's LearnersLearner
The Importance of Healthy Living - Starting Early
by Physical Education & Health Teacher Jill Hallissey
As many of you know, February is not only the month of Valentine's Day, but it is also a month that raises awareness of heart disease. Heart disease is actually the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States. By raising awareness, we can encourage families to make small changes in their homes and lifestyles that will help prevent this widespread disease.

Throughout the health curriculum at Wilmington Montessori School, we focus on the many facets of leading a healthy, active lifestyle. In recent weeks, we have really focused our attention on the importance of healthy living and all that it encompasses. We have discussed the impact of nutrition as well as physical activity.

Students have learned the significance of eating healthy meals that include all food groups. We did this through examining a source called My Plate, which highlights the current nutritional guidelines for the United States. We touched on the six food groups as well as the six essential nutrients that are needed to support a healthy body. Students also learned how to read food labels. This is a great tool to see what exactly you are putting into your body and how it will be used. By making healthier food choices, we can help prevent heart disease, as well as many other medical conditions.

During the past few weeks, we moved our focus to the importance of physical activity. Students now know that it is in our best interest to be physically active for 60 minutes per day. Staying physically active has countless benefits. Some benefits we discussed in class include helping to promote stronger muscles and bones, regulating daily mood and increasing self-confidence.

Students in the 6-9 and 9-12 programs recently had an opportunity to create an exercise plan of their favorite exercises. We looked at it as sort of a "Personal Training" project. They were able to do this with a buddy or on their own. The assignment was to create an exercise plan of five moves that they would like to share with the class. In this moment, they became the teachers. Students shared their five exercises with the class and we all participated in doing them. Students really enjoyed this project - both as trainers and trainees! 

If you are a 6-9 or 9-12 parent, I encourage you to ask your child what some of their favorite exercises were. Some were exercises we have done in class for warm-ups, and other were entirely created by the students. My hope is that all students find happiness in being physically active and that they will continue to do so even after their years here at WMS!
Tomorrow's Leadersleaders
Alumni Profile: Leah Walker, Class of 1996
Even though Leah Walker was excited to move onto new experiences after graduating from Wilmington Montessori School, it wasn't long before she returned to her Montessori roots. Her mom, WMS Librarian Elizabeth Varley, still fondly remembers the day she got a call from Leah during her junior year of college: "Mom, I've decided. I really HAVE to be a Montessori teacher."

Elizabeth describes that day as her favorite Montessori moment: "It really brought home to both my husband and me how important this early education had been to both Leah and her brother Greg," Elizabeth said. "Both have very different personality types and learning styles, and yet they found the perfect fit at Wilmington Montessori School. Both have excelled at what they do and credit Montessori for giving them the skills they needed to reach their goals."
From Wilmington Montessori School's 1996 Yearbook
Leah went to WMS from 1988 to 1996, after which she attended Wilmington Friends School and Mount Pleasant High School.  From high school she moved to Ohio to attend Muskingum University where she obtained her bachelor's degree in French. Her mom credits former French WMS teacher Madame Piha for Leah's interest in and talent for the French language. After college, Leah moved to Honolulu, Hawaii, and attended Chaminade University where she completed her Master of Education degree and received her American Montessori Society 3-6 certification.

Leah is enjoying life in Hawaii. She and her fiancé enjoy taking trips up to the North Shore to visit spots like Waimea Valley and snorkel at Sharks Cove. They have a beautiful view off of their lanai (balcony) from which they oversee Punchbowl Cemetery, the city and ocean. They also enjoy taking their dog George for hikes in the mountains. Leah now works at the Chaminade University Montessori Laboratory School as a Lead Primary Teacher. When she reflects on her years at WMS, she fondly recalls spending a lot of time in the woods doing stream watch and classifying leaves and flowers. Being that close to nature is something she now tries to give back to her students - the chance to go outside and discover bugs and plants, to cultivate a lifelong affinity for nature and the outdoors.
The Wednesday Weekly shares WMS news and events that are relevant to the families in our community.  

Please send submissions to wednesday-weekly@wmsde.org 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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