In addition to a solid and cognitive foundation of reading, writing, literature, math and science, Montessori Tides School is relentless to amplify our Program beyond natural or proper limits based on the conventional standard. Recently we were fortunate enough to be selected and earn a Garden Grant which has enhanced our Program with hands-on Botany Studies. In addition, our Lower-Elementary Program is giving children a track to ride on by connecting them with history. Causing children to impact our world through the access of past historians.
History means “to unlock.” It is to give us access, the removal of a cover over significant events so we can see an explanation of their causes more clearly. Not to be mistaken, history doesn’t create something; it simply reveals what was already there. For instance, last year on the blog we unlocked the chronological order of the Jack O’ Lantern:
Halloween lanterns made from pumpkins only became popular relatively recently, after the Halloween holiday started to be widely celebrated in the US, where pumpkins are bountiful? Carved vegetable lanterns, or Jack O’Lanterns as they’re often known, are part of an ancient tradition that originated with the Celts. However the original lanterns made by the Celts in Europe were usually made from turnips, swedes or mangelwurzels. Pumpkins have since then gained popularity, thanks to the relative ease with which they can be carved, and the vibrant orange glow they produce when lit up.
Just like an ordinary pumpkin can illuminate a path, the study of historians can illuminate a path MTS students will one day walk. Think about it? The same way a runner hands off a baton, historians unlock what a child owns in the present and invites the child to advance further off their accomplishments and to finish what they’ve started.
The first week in October Ms. Nancy invites the children to study a mathematician or scientist of their choice. Neil Armstrong, Galileo Galilee, and Albert Einstein were a few favored among the class. The second week children have the opportunity to unlock two facts about their person. The third week children think and experiment how they will dress to school on Halloween as their historian. On Halloween day they stand as their historian and share something they’ve learned.
These great narratives set the stage for the children’s exploration of all the subject areas. They prepare the children for work that has a purpose and meaning far beyond passing tests and receiving grades. Perhaps most importantly, they help children understand the relationships between the topics they study, and what impact these relationships have on the past, present and future conditions of our world. One child named Savannah made a shocking correlation and was able to relate although Albert Einstein was a very bright man, he never learned how to tie his own shoe. As the lesson unfolds, children realize people who have made a huge difference in our world are truly just ordinary people, such as themselves, who have stepped into their task. Above all, these overviews help each child appreciate the achievements of past generations and realize they can make positive contributions to the world, too. In the words of Ms. Nancy, “Historical Halloween is a sight to behold.”