Staff and the new year.
The first week back at school is a time for staff to prepare their environment, both inside and out the classroom; it is a time to share holiday stories and reconnect with colleagues; a time to review final educational plans for the term and as a group to have conversations about how we will manage the year and the first term in detail.
Staff approach the year with a sense of renewal and genuine excitement. This is a time when we need to refocus on our own role as Montessori adults and the values of our school. We have challenging conversations with regards to building capacity in ourselves, developing a stress free environment for our children and ways to identify progress in all areas.
How best to achieve this? Dr Montessori states that to provide an optimal environment, we need to first understand and prepare ourselves in welcoming the child. Hence a focus for our professional development was the spirituality of the child, Normalisation and the ‘inner sanctity of the child’. Of course the practicality of ensuring that every class is resourced and prepared to entice learning was a priority.
This year we have enhanced staff motivation with an inspiring hour of excellent guitar playing by the talented Michelle Blythe. Michelle is a proficient musician and guitar teacher. Her classical, Spanish and modern pieces kept us all entranced and at the end of this engaging session, Michelle invited staff to become involved in a jam session. We agreed that music is food for the soul and that we need to invite our children to listen, play and enjoy music, as this will enhance their learning capacity and general interest.
I know that this will not be the last we see of Michelle as Cycle 1 staff are keen to have Michelle visit our school again and invite our children to travel the world through a real experiential activity with artefacts, music and food.