Mill Falls News, 1/25/19

Service & Celebrations!
It was an abbreviated week that included a holiday and a weather delay.. The days we were here together, were jam-packed! Some of the highlights from the week include a visit by our 6th Year Students to the NH Food Bank; more scientific exploration by our Lower Elementary Students; and ongoing work by our Kinder students as part of the All-School European Continent Student. That study will culminate in student presentations next Thursday which you are invited to attend. Please click here to learn more about the celebration event.

An important part of the Montessori philosophy is helping children discover how they can make the world a better place. The Montessori Service Learning Curriculum is an important component of the 6th Year experience at Mill Falls. The students’ service work provides opportunities for hard work, cultural awareness, connection to community and a growing sense of empathy. 

Earlier in the year, the current 6th Year Students discussed projects they wanted to take on as part of their Service Learning Program. Led by Ms. Laura B, the students identified the Food Bank as a service partner, and took their first trip over there to share their strength with the warehouse team. Ms. Laura B. and  students walked over to the Food Bank, took a brief tour of the facility, and then got to work packaging potatoes into bags which will be handed out over the weekend to food-insecure families. 6th Year Student, Marissa, shared that “It felt great to help people, especially knowing that families who need food will be in on Saturday to pick up the food we sorted.” This was just one of the many activities and projects the Students will work on between now and June.

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Mill Falls News, 2/1/19

Olympic-sized Celebration!
It was a full house for our All-School European Continent Study Celebrations on Thursday. Visitors to all three of our program levels were treated to student-produced projects, food samples, dress, dance, music and even a symbolic Olympics event! We were thrilled to be able to share all of this with so many of you and we thank you so much for spending part of our Thursday with us!

So, what was this continent study all about anyway, and why is it so important? Firstly, this element of our Montessori Cultural Curriculumprovides the children with an opportunity to explore the larger world. It exposes them to aspects of cultures from around the world, as they learn about the people, terrain and animals of each continent, all with a focus on basic human needs. Each year, our students study two different continents…next up this year is Australia.

And beyond that, this week’s celebration offers our students the opportunity to strengthen their communication skills. They’re able to find their speaking and writing voices and to learn how to share what they’ve learned with others. 

As you might imagine, this kind of a school-wide project takes great energy and focus and requires that all the resources in the building pull together! Each classroom worked carefully on their chosen projects with assists as needed from our interventionists, our library and technology specialists, our special educators and even Ms. Laura W. enjoyed the time she and the Upper Elementary Students spent making fresh humus which was served to visitors during the Upper Elementary Olympics. It is a pleasure to support the students as they explore the world in this way, and observe them discover their place in it. And it is always wonderful to share that process with all of you! Please enjoy the photographs below from the Celebration.

To view the full newsletter, please click here.

Mill Falls News, 2/8/19

 Lots Cooking…
Yes, it’s still cold outside, and yes, we are not yet through winter, but this is the time of year when SO much is going on at Mill Falls. Some things are in the planning stages, and some events are just around the corner. Please take a few minutes to review this newsletter which, among other thing, highlights a variety of upcoming events and activities. 

First up is our 100th Day of School which we will be celebrating on Monday! Our teachers are planning all kinds of fun activities, based on or related to 100. The day is always a wonderful celebration of our school and all the great work being accomplished. This celebration will be observed throughout the school day on Monday. Of note, this may be one of the earliest 100th Days in our 7-year history, as we’ve not yet had a full snow day!

A few week ago, we shared that our 6th Year Students traveled to the NH Food Bank as part of their Service Learning Curriculum. This week, we received a thank you letter from the Food Bank, noting that our students sorted 1500 pounds of potatoes (!) which were then distributed at the Manchester food drop at JFK Stadium. This sorting helped to supply members of our community with about 1200 meals! We are proud of our 20 6th Year Students, and thank them, and Ms. Laura who accompanied them to the site, for their dedication to making this world a better place, one act of generosity at a time!

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Mill Falls News, 2/15/19

100 Days & Kind Hearts!
We kicked off this week with a wonderful celebration of our 100th Day of School.  Teachers dressed up as 100-year-old women and we gathered together for an All-School Meeting to begin the day. Ms. Laura W. provided the annual reading of 100th Day Worries – an engaging children’s book about worries, creativity and celebration. Throughout the day, our students and staff worked together on challenges and crafts related to 100. Fun was had by all!

Mother Nature threw us a little curve ball mid-week and we hope our MFCS Families enjoyed the snow day! After the storm cleared, our staff met up for lunch and a powerful Professional Development Workshop led by Elise Wulff from Aspire/Mass General Hospital for Children. Wulff shared her extensive  knowledge about brain-based mechanisms that influence social skill building. Through Wulff’s small group work, our staff explored effective teaching practices and in-depth strategies for creating strong classroom communities built on effective communication and collaboration.

To read the full newsletter, please click here.

Mill Falls News, 1/18/19

It Takes a Village…

It has been a very busy, albeit cold winter weather week here at school. The chill outside, however, has not impacted our focus on the many exciting lessons underway. Our Lower Elementary Students have explored states of matter, while our Upper Elementary Students have begun to explore the history of ancient civilizations as part of their European content study. Meanwhile, our Kinder classroom has been learning about arctic animals.

Our Student Newspaper, The MFCS Roots, is back in action. The 2019 Editorial Board held its first meeting Monday, and expects to produce two issues of the paper between now and the end of the year. Beyond the work done by the paper’s editorial board, all MFCS students are encouraged to contribute their favorite writing or art pieces for consideration. 

We are so fortunate to have so many who lend their energy, humor and expertise in small and large ways. Each week a variety of volunteers come to school. Here is a small sample of the volunteer work which is now underway:

Members of the Junior Monarchs Hockey Team, coached by MFCS dad, Ryan Frew, are continuing their year-long reading support with our students. The players come in weekly – wearing shoes not skates – and read alongside students from our Kinder and Lower Elementary Programs. The Jr. Monarchs aren’t our only reading volunteers. We also have several MFCS Parent Readers who also come in weekly to work with children. All of this is enormously helpful in boosting the students’ reading fluency and comprehension. All of our readers are terrifically engaging with the kids and both the children and adults look forward to their time together.

To read the full Newsletter, please click here.