Brooksfield's Elementary Chefs "Knocked It Out Of The Park"

Brooksfield's Elementary Chefs "Knocked It Out Of The Park"
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  Tuesday was our third “Farm to Table” cooking adventure in the Upper School.  Our chefs for the day prepared lunch for their classmates and teachers.  The menu was our first “international” offering – Coconut beef and vegetable curry Cucumber-Mint Raita Chapatti / steamed rice Vanilla cupcakes with chocolate buttercream frosting  All three chefs were very responsible in the cooking area, chopping, measuring, pouring, stirring and blending with care. Working cooperatively and respectfully meant that everyone was permitted to use all of the cooking utensils, even the pointy ones, and take turns working at the stove. The smells wafting up the stairs from the Upper School were fabulous as the curry simmered to perfection.  The squash we used was grown in our summer garden and we harvested the potatoes minutes before we dropped them into the pot!  Mint and onion greens, the first few herbs offered up by the gardens...
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Let Them Make Cake! Expanding on Montessori Schooling in the Kitchen

Let Them Make Cake! Expanding on Montessori Schooling in the Kitchen
Sending your child to a  Montessori School  helps ensure they are getting a quality education during the school day. However, this does not mean you can't help enhance their Montessori experience at home. There are many ways to expand upon your child's education at home, but one of the very best ways you can do this is by involving your little one in the kitchen. Kitchen work helps fine-tune motor skills, teaches life skills, and gives children a feeling of pride and accomplishment.  Many parents are intimidated by the idea of giving their child kitchen tasks. The thought of their child acquiring a cut or burn makes them hesitant to involve their children in the cooking. While this is understandable, it is no reason to make the kids leave the kitchen when dinner prep begins. Here are a few ways very young people can help out with the cooking. Peeling...
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A Montessori School Understands Your Busy Child Might Just be a Kinesthetic Learner

A Montessori School Understands Your Busy Child Might Just be a Kinesthetic Learner
Young children are full of energy, and are constantly on the move. When they reach the age of attending preschool or elementary school, many parents hear comments from educators that children have a hard time sitting still and doing seatwork. While some may be quick to assign a medical label, consider the possibility that the child may just be a kinesthetic learner. A  Montessori school  can help assess your child's learning style and adapt to it appropriately. There are 4 main types of learning styles. Reader-writers perform the best with traditional teaching methods, as they truly enjoy getting lost in a book or writing a story. Assign them a packet of worksheets and they are truly in their element. Visual learners need images, graphics, maps, charts, and other visual aids to process information. Auditory learners do best when they can hear and speak about what they are learning. Reading out...
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The Lower School Helps Brooksfield's Birds Transition Into Spring!

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The Lower School helps Brooksfield’s birds transition into Spring The children in Julie and Beth’s class have been helping our wild birds as they transition into spring. Birdseed is still needed to help female birds build up strength before nesting season is upon them.  Julie’s class made two different types of feeders:  one that filled egg cartons with a combination of shortening, sunflower butter and bird seed, and the other which coated a small bird house with wild bird seed.  We hung them on the garden loom and watched the birds (and squirrels) feast.  Beth’s class spent the morning cutting up pieces of soft yarn and felt, and mixed them with pillow stuffing and dryer lint.  Then we stuffed wire balls with the soft nesting material and hung them in the trees outside the classroom window.  We’ll watch the birds that make our forest their home, take the material to...
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The Magic of Green

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In art, the color green symbolizes growth and transformation. In nature, it is evident in the way fragile yet strong green stems emerge from the ground in the Spring or how green buds blossom on the trees, signs of more to come, of growth and life. For one three-year-old boy, the color green and its symbolism took on a personal meaning. It was my first year of teaching art at Brooksfield. One of my students, James, a quiet three- year- old, had a favorite color: green. Whenever I offered a colorful selection of oil pastels, he would use a green one to draw a spiny dinosaur. He would paint green mountains. He would choose green yarn for weaving projects. His artwork was usually on green paper. We all knew he loved green. A few weeks into the year, I was teaching a lesson on primary colors. We used white paper...
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Brooksfield Nurtures the Need for Nature

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Let's face it: We know that being outside provides a plethora of benefits -- but factors such as weather, busy schedules and lack of outdoor opportunities keep us from spending as much time outdoors as we know we should. Experts agree that spending time outdoors delivers a range of physical and mental benefits. According to author and clinical psychologist, Kay Redfield Jamison, time spent outdoors stimulates creativity, reduces anxiety, promotes problem-solving and leadership skills, helps children recognize patterns, increases vocabulary and improves immune systems.  Brooksfield's charming five-acre campus provides an outdoor classroom where children profit on a daily basis from opportunities to engage with nature: nature walks, spontaneous outdoor investigation, art classes in the gazebo or in the garden, wildlife observation, playground time and gardening - a chance to literally reap what they sow.  "On Brooksfield's peaceful trail, we ask the children to pay attention to the sounds they hear:...
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Before Montessori School: Bringing Baby Up the Montessori Way

Many parents wish to incorporate Montessori methods into their child's life before he or she turns three and is eligible to be enrolled in  Montessori School . Here are a few things mothers and fathers might consider doing in order to begin their babies' Montessori lifestyle right away.  Freedom and Independence Offer your baby freedom to explore his or her surroundings. Exploration leads to discovery and learning. Create a safe environment for your little one by covering outlets, anchoring tall furniture to the walls, and putting sharp (or otherwise unsafe) objects out of reach. Place your child's mattress on the floor and forgo the crib. This gives baby the opportunity to get up and play in the morning without needing to call out for mom and dad. Baby gates, play yards, and other "baby cages" should be avoided whenever possible. Speak To Them Talk to your little guy or girl...
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After Montessori School: What Now?

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Your child went to a Montessori preschool. They attended a  Montessori school  for kindergarten. Unfortunately, your time with a quality Montessori education is running out. As a parent who is genuinely hopeful that your child will continue to love learning, approach learning challenges independently, and be able to learn at their own pace throughout their educational career, you can't help but wonder how you're going to take that Montessori style into their later years at school. Keep your child in their current school.  Many Montessori kindergartens are linked to other schools, from private schools that take them through their elementary school years to other institutions. If you want to continue your child's Montessori education or maintain their current philosophy of education for as long as possible, the best way to do it is to keep them in their current school. Those schools are designed with a Montessori philosophy at the...
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What is Brooksfield's Anthropology Express Program?

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  Here in Brooksfield’s Upper School, students are busy preparing for their annual Anthropology Express!* production. Through the lens of the performing arts, a culture area is explored using scene work, movement, texts and songs. By studying traditions, myths, belief systems, relationships to landscape and cultural history, students develop heightened awareness of diverse cultures and appreciation for our global neighbors. This creative laboratory approach utilizes discussion, enactment, brainstorming and rehearsal, yielding a fully realized theatrical production each spring. Ancient Greece / Minoan Crete is our culture area this cycle, with scenes underway depicting Odysseus & the Sirens, Poseidon’s Ocean, Demeter & Persephone, and appearances by Artemis, Apollo, Hermes, and a host of other characters. Our finale includes chanted poetic text translated from The Hymns of Orpheus. Please mark your calendars and plan to attend the Upper School’s production at an all-school assembly on Thursday, May 12, at 10:30 AM. *Anthropology...
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Next Brooksfield Parent Coffee: Emotional Intelligence February 4, 2016

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Brooksfield Alumni Parent, Francine Ronis, is presenting a workshop on Emotional Intelligence.  Francine has done several mindful parenting workshops here at Brooksfield.  Her workshops are full of information and great ideas to practice at home.  Below are the details about her next workshop here at Brooksfield!  Check out her website at  http://francineronis.org Emotional intelligence refers to the ability to perceive, control and evaluate emotions. Some people believe the EQ is more important than IQ, however many of us never develop their EQ and don't know how. Learn the main tenants of EQ, why it's important, and how to develop a higher EQ for yourself and your child. Join alumni parent and child/family therapist, Francine Ronis for our next Parent Coffee at 9:30, February 4 at the Brooksfield School, 1830 Kirby Road, McLean, VA 703-356-5437. Admission is free, but please RSVP.
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