Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Homemade Montessori Birthday Celebration

Today is my middle daughter's second birthday, and we did our best to replicate the Montessori-style birthday celebration that my oldest daughter experienced last year when she attended Montessori.

The day started out the same as all the rest, with Miss K leading Circle Time. She and the kids updated the calendar and then went over all of the topics she introduced yesterday. We said a prayer for our little friend who broke her arm (she had surgery earlier today), and then we started our Montessori work.

I introduced the Geometric solids, and it was clear that no one was very interested. (I tried to make a game out of the solids by covering four in a basket and asking the kids to find a specific one using only their hands, but that held their interest for all of two minutes - oh well:). We moved on.

Practical Life activities were a big draw again today - I'm going to need to do a better job at rotating in new activities, because although the kids really gravitate toward them, I can tell that the current batch of activities is getting stale.

Miss K's daughter then asked if she could build the pink and brown tower - I was thrilled! If you read yesterday's post, you'll know that I'm a little unsure about my approach of introducing new activities to the group as a whole in the hopes that the kids will come back to that activity individually. I took this as a good sign.

After a pretty long work cycle, we moved on to the big birthday celebration! I made a poster with pictures of my daughter at birth, at her first birthday, and at her second birthday party (which we held this past Sunday):

Miss K and I made a sun with the 12 months radiating off of it. It wasn't this, which is what they had at my oldest daughter's school, but it worked:

We discussed the 12 months of the year, that the earth goes around the sun one time in one year, and that the earth has gone around the sun two times since my daughter was born.

I pointed out the picture of my daughter on the day she was born, then I gave her a globe to hold (again, it wasn't this, but it worked), and I helped her walk around the sun one time as we all sang (to the tune of "The Farmer in the Dell"), "The Earth goes 'round the sun, the Earth goes 'round the sun, the Earth goes around the sun, and __________ turns one."

At this point I stopped her and showed everyone a picture of my daughter at her first birthday. Then I helped her walk around the sun one more time as we sang, "The Earth goes 'round the sun, the Earth goes 'round the sun, the Earth goes around the sun, and __________ turns two," and I showed the kids a picture of my daughter at her second birthday party.

Then we sang Happy Birthday and had cupcakes for a healthy snack :). Of course, the symbolism of all of this was completely lost on my two-year-old, but my older daughter clearly remembers walking around the sun three times last year and is thrilled to get to walk around the sun four times in just a couple weeks.

Today was Music day, which Miss K led in Miss D's absence. The kids sang US-themed songs to go along with their US-themed Circle Time, and then they paraded around with US flags. We closed with the "B" verse and story from My ABC Bible Verses: "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God," Matthew 5:9.


The Dancy Family said...

It was so cool to see SG start on that tower using the brown rods & pink blocks! I was one proud mama & you should be one proud teacher! Your doing great...keep it up!

Becky said...

Ooh, thanks for posting this. I was looking for that birthday activity with the sun.

Karen said...

At my son's school they use a candle to represent the sun, and they have little laminated cards with the names of the months on them. The birthday child chooses other children to go get the materials, one brings the earth, one brings the candle, one brings the matches, one brings the month names, etc. for the set up.