Autumn Term Newsletter
The Autumn Term has been speeding along and we have been busy at Netherton learning more about the harvest which we have been watching all around us. There has been much interest in combine harvesters and several of the children know an awful lot about them! We were lucky enough to be at school to watch our landlords, the Barrons, harvesting the field next door. There is indeed something very pleasing and mesmerising about a combine harvester in a field of barley.
We have been learning about the different grains which are grown locally and talking about the related foods which we eat. Bread baking was a great success and there has been lots of art and craft work inspired by what the children have been exploring.
(see photos in the gallery at the bottom)
Everyone has settled into the new academic year with much enthusiasm and the pre school cohort are enjoying the responsibility of showing the younger children how we do things at Netherton. We have welcomed 5 new children to the school; Phoebe, Arthur, Hattie, Minnie and Henry and it is remarkable how quickly they have integrated into the group. We are always very conscious that as parents you often don’t get to hear too much about what it is your child is doing all day. “What did you do at school today?” and the answer comes back “Nothing”. Or, the other one, “Who did you play with today at school” and the classic response of “None one wanted to play with me”. We can assure you that neither is true! We are holding an informal Parents’ Evening on Monday 3rd of October from 7 to 8.30pm and we warmly invite you all to come along and we can dispel some myths. It is also an opportunity for you to meet other parents and find out a bit more about Montessori education.
It was very disappointing that our new nursery assistant Sarah was unable to continue in the post due to a sudden and unexpected change in her personal circumstances however we are delighted that Emma Holden will be joining us. Emma is currently undertaking a Montessori qualification and she comes highly recommended.
We thought we would share with you some of our positive language tips which we have been focusing on these past few weeks. Helen Prochaska from the Montessori Partnership wrote these wise words about words
SPITTING OUT OUR WORDS
A colleague many years ago was fond of saying ‘Spit your words into your hand and look at them before you say them.’
This is a good resolution to adopt for the new academic year. By taking an extra second to consider a response before saying something that can’t be unsaid, many tricky situations can be avoided, or handled better.
A classic example is saying to a child, ‘Would you like to …?’ And when they answer ‘No!’, which is a perfectly legitimate response to this closed question, where are you then? And where do you go from there?
Be very wary of this question. Only ask it if you are genuinely willing to include ‘no’ as a legitimate answer that you can respect by acting on it. But if you are really not offering a choice, rephrase your words. If you want the child to do something, and are not giving an option to refuse, there are lots of good alternatives:
- I’d like you to….
- It’s time to …
- I can see you’re ready to…..
- The next thing on the list is to ….
- You need to ….
- Please do ….
We would also like to take this opportunity to reiterate once again that we are always very happy to discuss any aspect of your child’s development and education. Dropping off time in the morning isn’t the best time to chat as we find that a quick goodbye and exit works well for the children. We appreciate that pick up time can be a bit busy but we are always available for a quiet word in the office and equally are happy to talk on the phone between 3.30 and 5pm. With small children there can often be misunderstandings and a good working relationship between yourselves and the school is the basis for our partnership so please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any concern or think there is anything that it would be helpful for us to know.
We look forward to welcoming you to Netherton on the evening of Monday 3rd October.
With best wishes
Jill and Verity