Blast Off! in Montessori F
Cheryl Morris and Beverly Junell
Children love to make things go. Just watch boys and girls playing with action figures or toy cars and
one can witness their joy in narrating their own life dramas. Experiencing rocketry is usually something
we only see on the 4th of July or perhaps on television during a space launch. Children in Montessori
F recently were able to experience the feeling of launching one of their creations into “orbit” in our
bottle rocket experiment. The children made paper rockets by wrapping paper around a “gauge” tube
to make a rocket body which they then plugged on one end. They added decorations, fins and whatever
“aerodynamic creativity” they could muster. Finally, their classroom leaders would load the rockets
onto the launch tube and the children would stomp the launch facilitator (a 2L soda bottle) thereby
propelling their dreams into the air. Along with this, the children watched space launch and space
exploration videos, learned about the planets and even were introduced to gas compression, expansion
and projectile motion. Oh, by the way, they had a lot of fun too!
Kindergarteners Learn Through Faith
In kindergarten, we have been working all year on advancing our reading and writing skills. We love to share the new things we learn with others, and we did just that, when we were growing in our faith and learning more about the Easter season. We shared stories we wrote about ‘The First Easter’ with each other and made Easter baskets for our annual Easter egg hunt. But we continued to grow in our faith when we made the connection that when we do good deeds, such as these, we are being a light for the world. Christ shines within us. We then welcomed Montessori students to participate in an Atrium liturgy called The Liturgy of The Light. We were the lectures and then returned to our classroom to help the Montessori students make Easter candles. We may only be kindergarteners, but our faith is growing more every day and the light within us is burning bright.
Mrs. Russell's Scientists
Are all of our cells alike? How does our body work? How many body systems do we have? Are our digestive systems different than the chicks?
What interesting Science questions come from inquisitive minds!! These and many, many more great questions have developed as Fourth Grade has been studying about cells and exploring with microscopes, and Fifth Grade has been learning about some of the human body systems. And, then there is the yearly hatching of the chicken eggs from Mrs. Russell’s farmyard to add to our Life Science Units! And did I mention the wind lifts Fourth & Fifth Grade are testing in Hands-on Science!
Wonderful 3-D models of the human cell have been presented and studied by Fourth Grade as they are now moving on to learn more about the six Kingdoms of life. Further perusal of flower dissections and more in depth study of characteristics of the plant and animal kingdoms will keep these students busy during the rest of April and May!
Fifth Grade has progressed through their human body study by taking a trip as a red blood cell through the heart to better understand the circulatory system. Putting this knowledge together with what they have learned about the Respiratory and Digestive Systems will complete, but not end their ongoing interest in learning about their growing bodies. Such an interesting, yet mysterious topic!
And, the chicks!!! Well, we have learned some interesting lessons of life – with only about 30% of the eggs hatching, survival of the fittest, and nutritional needs – even to the point of looking at the anatomy of chickens!
In Hands-on Science both classes have been building wind lifts to test different shapes, sizes, numbers, etc. of their blades. We have high hopes of a possible future for a St. Mary’s student or more in the wind turbine industry or possibly in roller coaster engineering! Our students demonstrated creativity and persistents in the recent month long roller coaster making project. For now we just keep on exploring and learning more about Science and loving it!