Rolling into Autumn

Mr. Justin holds Nathaniel's poster while he shares information on Neptune with the class.

6-9 Class Travels Across the Solar System

Last week the 6 to 9 class was given an assignment of making a “Planetary” poster and presenting it to the class. Everyone did a wonderful job.
Here are some of the children’s favorite facts.

  • “Jupiter has a faint ring” (Siah)
  • “Jupiter has 49 moons!” (Silas)
  • “Neptune’s moon Triton is the coldest thing in the solar system.” (Nathaniel)
  • “I didn’t know Earth’s atmosphere has layers.” (Savannah)
  • “Uranus has 13 rings.” (Juni)
  • “Mars is named after the Roman god of war.” (Olivia)
  • “The red spot on Jupiter is very stormy.” (Victoria)
  • “Mars has two moons.” (Aria)
  • “The white spots on Neptune are crystallized methane.” (Luke)
  • “The Red Spot on Jupiter is a huge storm.” (Madeline)
  • “Venus is very rocky and very hot.” (Jake)
  • "Neptune is named after the Roman god of the sea."(Cole)
  • "Saturn is named after the Roman god of farming."(Cassidy)
  • "If you put Saturn in water, it would float."(Lindsay)
  • “Saturn’s rings are made of ice and dust.” (Annika)
  • "Jupiter is made of gas... and I like the big storm!"(Summer)
  • “Triton use to be a planet and it will crash into Neptune soon!” (Morgan)

Welcoming the New Season in the 2-4

Happy Fall to All is what we're saying these days as the 2-4 classroom explores seasons and the changes that comes with them. Check out our easel painting of a spectacularly colored tree. Each child put his/her mark on it by way of primary red and primary yellow. It's quite the explosion of color and we had lessons on how to paint/clean up the easel as well. We will soon be investigating what happens when you mix primary red together with primary yellow!
We have also been enjoying different kinds of apples this week in celebration of Johnny Appleseed's birthday (Sept.26.) Our shelves are full of apple and fall related activities so stop by one afternoon at pick up and look the room over. You might even get an answer to the "What did you do today?" question!
And we are throughly enjoying music with Deb on Tuesdays and tunes with Tommy on Thursdays...we've got rythym, yes we do!
Thanks to all who came out on Parent Ed night, for the healthy lunches we see each day and to all who are dropping off with the greeter these days. It really helps our day begin on a happy note!
The 2-4 Classroom


New 6-9 assistant Emily Wells comes to us from teaching stints at elementary schools in Newland and Blowing Rock. She is working with the students on Spanish, and trying to keep from getting injured in P.E.!

Finding Norwood Parking Lot Solutions

There's too much traffic for the driveway at the Norwood House between 2:30 and 2:45. If you are picking up a 9-12er, please don't get here before 2:45 or 2:50. This also goes for those picking up a 6-9 and 9-12er. If you are here before 2:45, please park across the road or down by 194 until 2:45 (i.e.: don't come to the Children's House lot.)

From the Front Office Desk...

Most of you probably haven’t heard that I used to get paid to write down what I was thinking about every week. When I was publisher of The Avery Journal, I followed the “family tradition” started by my cousin Lewis, and wrote a weekly newspaper column to amuse or scandalize the citizens of our neighboring county.

I’ve been too busy (or lazy) to write much lately, maybe the occasional wedding ceremony or grocery list, but I’d like to try and get in the habit of typing out a few thoughts on school and Montessori for this here newsletter. So here goes...
Mountain Pathways is doing great. We have a dedicated staff and amazingly supportive families. Our community is open-minded and embracing of the educational ideals that have evolved over the last century since Maria Montessori began her earth-shaking work in 1907. It has been hard to get this ship steered in the right direction. Like Jules’ “righteous man” in Pulp Fiction we are “beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men.” We are bounced between regulations at the state level to the county and back, nature and history have teamed up to drop our ancient fossilized buildings squarely in the floodplain of our beautiful creek, and there’s just something inherently tricky and challenging about doing what we do for a living around here. We ask you parents every day to trust us with your most prized loves -- your little pieces of yourselves -- your children. How can we be so bold?
I am able to tell you with no hesitation that your children could not be in better hands. Our classrooms are guided by teachers that have dedicated not only their lives, but their very souls, to educating and helping children. Now sure, there are lots of teachers in this world, but the Montessori teacher, the Mountain Pathways teacher, is different. The whole idea behind Montessori education is active participation in the improvement of our world through sharing truth with the coming generation in a clear, understandable way. We accompany the children into the cave each day and shine light on the paintings on the wall. It is not our job to tell the children what the shapes and colors signify. We respond to their questions. We do not GIVE them answers... the answers do not belong to us. What we do offer the children are tools to make a light for themselves, to discover their own gifts.
It is what we call the drive toward independence. They will live their lives as the self that they discover in these very years they are living right now. It is why we take our work so seriously. They are fragile. As parents, many of us cherish this fragility. But a child does not need to be fragile to be soft and cuddly and lovable. We can nurture the sensitivity of children toward their fellow human beings while also giving them exercises to build their muscles that they will need to bear the burdens and scale the barriers that life will inevitably place in their paths.
I hope we can talk more about this. This is just chapter one. Feel free to come chat with me or your teachers. Leave a comment on the blog, or drop an email or comment on the Facebook page. We are in this together, hopefully for many years to come. So for now, Grizdawg out.

Coming Attractions...

The 9-12 Class is taking the Hatch Bus to Grayson Highlands for day hikes on the Appalachian Trail and overnight camping this Thursday. We hope to see some great photos on their return!


Anyone looking for a babysitter? 3-6 assistant Kelly Boone is here for you. Give her a call at 561-373-0852.

Visit Maria's Books and Coffee in the front hallway of the Children's House every morning. Maria's features $1 paperbacks and $1 Espresso News coffee refills. This week's flavors are Colombian and Sumatran.