Growing Together

Geist Montessori Academy@GeistAcademy

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Volume 23: January 30, 2021

Dear GMA School Family,

Whew! The first week flew by and the rooms onsite and at home were full of love, joy, engagement, and reconnecting! Choice and individualized hands-on discovery filled every room. The students reflected upon their achievements in the first semester and set quarterly goals and resolutions for at home and at school with Mr. Michael. As a school community we are always reflecting and growing better together and welcome your input and ideas. Please take a moment to complete the parent survey within this week’s newsletter which will help guide our next steps in our strategic plan.

Enjoy the pictures this week full of twinkling eyes and learning delight.

As always, thank you for partnership in learning!

Love to you and yours,

Cindy Schuler

Executive Director

Geist Montessori Academy

(317) 813-4626

Of all things, love is the most potent.

-Maria Montessori

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Dates to remember

Upcoming Events

1/25 Onsite learning resumes

2/1 Basketball and Drama Club Permission Slips Due

2/1 Drama Club Begins, refer to Mr. Ray's schedule below for details

2/3 Basketball Club

2/8-2/11 CogAT Testing, grades K and 2

2/10 Basketball Club

2/12 eLearning Day

2/15 No School/ President's Day

2/17 Basketball Club

2/24 Basketball Club

3/8-3/19 IREAD-3, 3rd grade state reading assessment

3/12 End of First Quarter

3/18-3/19 Student Led Conferences, Progress Reports

4/1 International Festival, South America Celebration

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Hands-on Learning

reconnecting friendships, ideas, and growing even more together!

We love creating!

Follow the yellow Brick Road!

There's no place like home! Come be a part of GMA's Wizard of Oz production!

Rehearsals will begin for the Wizard of Oz on Monday, February 1st. Rehearsals will run from 3:45 to 4:45 on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. Different Scenes will be worked on in each rehearsal. If your student is not in the scene for the day, they are not required to be at that rehearsal. A schedule will be sent each month leading up to the performance. As we get closer to the performance, rehearsals will be longer. We are looking at a mid-April performance date.

All speaking parts were given to the upper elementary and Jr. High students; however if younger students are interested in being in the cast, we are looking for munchkins, monkeys and trees. If you are interested in helping with the production, please let me know. We need help with costumes and set design and also just some general help to make the production a success. My e-mail is

There is no cost to be part of the drama club; however we would like to buy the cast and production crew t-shirts. Please fill out the attached permission slip below and return it before our first rehearsal on February 1st.

Thanks for your support of the Music and Drama departments, and we will see on the Yellow Brick Road this April.

E. Ray Stiffler

Music and Drama Director

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shared Inquiry

On Friday, 1/29, lower elementary students participated in shared Inquiry with the Junior Great Books Foundation Trainer, Danielle Martin. The Junior Great Books program combines high-quality literature, student-centered discussion, and activities that support reading comprehension, critical thinking, speaking and listening, and writing. Shared Inquiry™ is a method of teaching and learning that enables people of all ages to explore the ideas, meaning, and information found in everything they read. It centers on interpretive questions that have more than one plausible answer and can lead to engaging and insightful conversations about the text. It is based on the conviction that participants can gain a deeper understanding of a text when they work together and are prompted by the skilled questioning of their discussion leader. In this type of discussion, each participant engages in an active search for the meaning of a work by reading closely, asking questions and discussing actively. Discussion leaders provide direction and guidance in order to get participants thinking, listening, and responding to questions and answers from others in their discussion groups. The participants in the group look to the discussion leader for questions, not answers.

There are five key guidelines to engaging in a successful Shared Inquiry discussion.

  • Participants must read the selection carefully before the discussion.
  • The goal of the group is to discuss the ideas in the text and explore them fully.
  • Participants should support interpretations of the text with evidence from the work.
  • Everyone needs to listen carefully to the other participants and respond to them directly.
  • The leader is there to ask questions rather than offer his/her own interpretations of the text.

Students who learn Shared Inquiry:

  • Use reading comprehension strategies purposefully
  • Develop their own opinions and claims about a text
  • Support ideas with textual evidence, and weigh evidence for divergent ideas
  • Go beyond initial responses to think deeper about issues
  • Develop social and emotional intelligence through respectful dialogue and collaboration

Better Together

FREE Tutoring!!!!

Learning labs are back!

On Monday, select students will be bringing home permission slips for FREE before and after school tutoring if their teachers believe that they will benefit from this program to assist students with math and literacy skills. In order to maximize your child’s potential, we strongly encourage your child to take advantage of this incredible learning opportunity. If your child does not receive an invitation, but you would like for him/her to participate, please email your child's teacher.

Before school labs are held from 7:30-8:30 a.m., and students should be dropped off at the front door. After school learning labs are held from 3:45-4:45 p.m., and students should be picked up at the back of the building, door 5. We are looking forward to adding another layer of support to help our learners be the very best that they can be!


Bundle up and be in the know!

We will go outside for recess as much as possible, so be sure that your students are bundled up! As inclement weather approaches, please watch local news’ stations and check your emails for delays and cancellations. We will post all 2-hour delays and cancellations on local news’ stations, email, Facebook, and Geist Montessori Academy's website.

building our learning

Swishes do come TRue!

Your swishes came true! It's Time for Basketball Club!

Basketball Health benefits

  • Strengthens muscular endurance
  • Helps with social-emotional regulation
  • Builds healthy bones
  • Improves balance and coordination
  • Develops fundamental movement skills
  • Improves body composition
  • Boosts heart health

Does your child want to practice basketball skills and cooperation?

When: February 3, 10, 17 & 24

Time: 3:45 – 4:45 (students must be picked up before 5:00)

Where: GMA Gym

Who: Grades 4th – 8th

Contact Info: Brian Hole


Registration form, found below, is due to Mr. Brian by Monday, February 1, 2021.

Welcome new kindergarteners!

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Welcome Clementine, Cohen, and George!


Sunshine Spreaders

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Sprinkling Sunshine All Along the Way!

Congratulations for sharing kindness and compassionate this week!

Lucy Wolf

Evan Blackburn

Jayna Malkemus

Orion Kortz

Marlee Brunson

Bella Thrush

Nicholas Koehl

Madison Gatch

Growing better together with pre-k

Plant the seeds of Success!

Pre-K is Growing!

Great roots are sown at GMA's Pre-K!

Please contact Ms. Karen,

Plant the seeds of success!

Parent Survey~ we need your input to grow better together!

In this survey, we are interested in learning more about your thoughts, feelings, and attitudes towards your child's school, Geist Montessori Academy. It should take about 15 minutes to complete. When answering these questions, please consider your family's current experience at school. This survey is to help us understand different aspects of the parent/school/teacher relationships. Your answers will be used in aggregate, and we will not be evaluating individual responses. As such, please be as honest as possible - there are no right or wrong answers. Unless you disclose demographic information, your responses will be held in confidence, as well.

Please complete this survey once per family, or if you would like to share your experiences and feedback per child, you are welcome to complete the survey once per child enrolled at GMA.

As always, we appreciate your partnership in learning!

Notes from the Nurse/ Weekly Screening

We look forward to seeing our onsite students back in the building! By continuing to follow CDC and state health guidelines we can S.M.A.S.H. COVID-19 together (Social distance, Masks, Avoiding crowds, Screen and Stay home when sick, Hand washing) and continue to have a healthy and successful school year. You can help S.M.A.S.H. COVID-19 by remembering to complete the weekly GMA COVID-19 screening. Please follow the google form link to complete the screening by 8 am Thursday for the following week for each student on site at GMA. This screener will be available to complete weekly starting this spring semester. If you are unable to check all of the screening boxes, please reach out to me for an explanation and guidance for returning to school. See you all soon and reach out anytime!

April Wayman, RN

Geist Montessori Academy

School Nurse

317-813-4626 ext.106

PTO President, Ms. Morgan

All PTO meetings are at 6:30pm, and we hope that you can join us!

March 16

April 20

May 18

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 429 578 4599

Passcode: 2BQ5G9

A message from Dr. Katie Jenner, Indiana's First Secretary of Education

Next week, we usher in the month of February, which is Black History Month. One of my favorite Black historical icons is Madam C.J. Walker (born Sarah Breedlove). If you do not know her story, I encourage you to dig in because she is remarkable and became a Hoosier by choice. In the early 1900s, she identified a need in the marketplace -- quality hair care products and cosmetics tailored to the needs of Black women -- and she built a business empire (based in Indianapolis!) that earned her the distinction as America’s first female self-made millionaire.

In speeches, Madam Walker spoke of her humble beginnings and how she worked her way up the career ladder during a time when women, and especially Black women, were not welcome in the business world. A vocal advocate for civil rights, Madam Walker played the role of friend and mentor to countless women and people of color throughout her life.

As her wealth grew, so did her philanthropic interests, and the Indianapolis community owes a debt of gratitude to this inspirational woman who contributed heavily to nonprofit organizations committed to making the city a better place.

I am thankful for the example set by Madam Walker. Her life serves as a beautiful reminder that, no matter the challenges we face, we hold within ourselves the power to work hard, help others, and never give up when reaching for our dreams. Thank you, Madam Walker!

Individualized Work Plans

Montessori Language Symbols

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Thank you, School Board!

President: Uriah Ellis

Secretary: Lacey Willard

Treasurer: Andrew Cavallaro

Members at Large: Karen Swan and Mark Clark

Next Meeting: Tuesday, February 16, 2021, 5:30 p.m.

Meeting Dates: March 16,April 20, May 18, and June 15, 2021

*All Meetings begin at 5:30 pm and are open to the public. Meetings are being held virtually.

We look forward to our continued partnership, as we grow together for the better!

International Recognition: Children of the world

"Children of the World" Virtual Choir

Car line procedures

Please refer to the handout below for complete car line procedure protocols.
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Meet Geist Montessori Academy's Executive Director: Cindy Schuler

GMA Contact iNformation


(317) 813-4626


6058 W. 900 N.

McCordsville, IN 46055

growing together for the better!