MMA Montessori Moments
September 30th, 2019
Fall Festival is Friday, Oct. 4th! Be there! Bring your friends!
What three traits define you? Kind, Helpful, Steady (My students said I should put funny, but I'm not sure my teenagers at home would agree!)
What would you like to be your greatest accomplishment? I would like my greatest accomplishment to be that my daughters become strong, confident, happy women who know their worth.
What's one thing you couldn't live without? I hesitate to say this, but my phone. It allows me to keep in touch with my family, especially my parents, who live far away. I also read a lot of books on my phone.
What is one thing you cannot resist? I definitely have a weakness for chocolate milk.
What is your favorite thing to do? Nothing! My life is so busy. My favorite thing is when I have nothing to do and I can just relax and spend time with my daughters.
Where is the most interesting place you've traveled to and why? Klagenfurt, Austria. My mom is from there and I loved learning more about her life and seeing where she grew up. I also got to meet all of the relatives on my mom's side of the family that I had never met before. It is a spectacularly beautiful place!
Who is your biggest inspiration? My mom! She is an amazing woman. She's been through a lot in her life and she is feisty and strong. She befriends everyone she meets and goes out of her way to serve and help others.
What advice do you have for kids who are struggling at school? Everyone is unique and has different strengths and struggles. You are important and you matter. Your value as a person is not connected to your struggles or successes at school. You are an amazing individual and you can do hard things! Also, don't ever hesitate to ask for help when you need it. You have a team of people who care about you and want to help you.
How do you define success? Success to me means that I have had a positive impact on the lives of those that I come in contact with. It means that I am making a difference and that I have left things or people better than I found them.
What do the students think of Ms. Kirsten?
1. What is the best thing about Ms. Kirsten? Ms. Kirsten is the funniest! She is so kind and caring, but seriously, she is the funniest!
2. Why do you think Ms. Martha is a good fit for MMA? Ms. Kirsten cares a lot about us. She always checks in, even if we made her upset.
Ms. Sarah B.
1. What three traits define you? Loyalty, Trust and Commitment
2.What would you like to be your greatest accomplishment? I've already done it - I have 3 wonderful kids.
3. What's one thing you couldn't live without? Books
4. What is the one thing you cannot resist? Dark Chocolate
5. What is your favorite thing to do? Read
6. Where is the most interesting place you've traveled to and why? Saint Petersburg, Russia as it was so interesting to see how the other side lived day to day. We got to travel all around the city and saw Catherine Palace, State Hermitage Museum, and Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood.
7. Who is your biggest inspiration? My husband, his tenacity in fixing things never ceases to amaze me.
8. What advice do you have for kids who are struggling at school? This is only a short snippet of your life, there is so much more out there for you to discover!
9. How do you define success? Happiness in where you are, who you are with, and what you do.
What do the students think about Ms. Sarah B?
1. What is the best thing about Ms. Sarah B? Her big floppy hat at recess. No, I am kidding. She is really nice and willing to help.2. Why do you think Ms. Sarah B. is a good fit for MMA? She helps Ms. Laura in the classroom.
Student of the Month
Jr High Grading
The purpose for grading in junior high is to communicate what a student has learned. The audience for grades includes the student, their parents/guardian, and the next school or teacher to work with the student.
Students submit work and teachers will provide a score of 1-4 and feedback about the quality and accuracy of the student's work. Check out the Jr High Handbook, starting on page 5, for more information about 1 to 4 scoring of assignments.
Students should receive feedback on formative (“while learning”) and summative (“after learning”) within 7 days of submitting the assignment. Only summative assessments will be counted when calculating the student's final quarter grade using Logic Rules. Consult the Jr High Handbook, starting on page 5, for more information about how Logic Rules turn 1-4 summative assignment scores into A-F report card grades.
Students will be issued report cards at the end of every term. The online Canvas progress report will both formative and summative scores inputted into Canvas. The Aspire report card will include only a single letter grade for each course, as well as the course credit earned.
Consequences for Missing Assignments
Skipping or ignoring summative assessments is not acceptable. If a student has not completed a summative assessment by the deadline the teacher has set, they will receive an I (“Incomplete”) for the assignment. (Canvas does not have the ability to show Is; this will display as blank). Students have until the end of the term to turn in the missing work, or do alternative make-up work as determined by the teacher. At the end of the term, any I grades will translate into an F quarter grade and no credit awarded. To be very clear: even one missing summative assessment will cause a student to fail the entire course.
In order to remediate an I grade on a term report cards, the student and their parents/guardians will meet with the teacher, school counselor, and administration and write a contract. The contract will detail how the student will (on their own time) demonstrate mastery of all of the power standards for the term.
Students may re-assess summative assessments. In order to re-assess any score, students must demonstrate that they have improved their learning. Before re-assessing a summative assessment, students need to have submitted all formative work. Each teacher may impose additional, reasonable requirements for students to demonstrate their improved learning before re-assessing. Examples may include extra practice problems or additional individual or small group lessons after school. Students must re-assess within one week of receiving their graded assignment back. This could be extended up to two weeks, upon teacher approval in writing to the student.
Original work must be turned in by the deadlines set by teachers in order to be eligible for re-assessment. The new (re-assessment) score will completely replace the old score, with no penalty for the re-take.
If a student has missed a deadline, they may still turn in the work until the last day of the quarter; however, students will not be given the opportunity to re-assess any work that is turned in late.
Once grades have locked at the end of the term, students may not re-assess any of that term’s grades. Teachers are welcome to offer them another opportunity to assess on those standards; however, the new grade will be reflected in the current term, not in the locked term.
If you or your child have any questions about grading in junior high, please contact your child's advisory teacher.
Do you ever wonder what your child is talking about when they come home? What is this lingo that they are speaking? This is a great resource of Montessori terminology a library of terms: https://montessori-ami.org/resource-library/facts/glossary-montessori-terms
Many children know the alphabet but have not analyzed the sounds in words, nor are they aware that words are made up of separate sounds (phonemic awareness). From the age of two (or as soon as the child is speaking fluently), sound games can make them aware of the sounds in words. An example of a sound game is the nursery game, "I Spy." The sound of the letter and not the letter name is pronounced.
The young child's work is very different from the adult's. When an adult works, he sets out to accomplish some goal and stops working when the object has been achieved. A child, however, does not work to accomplish an external goal but rather an internal one. Consequently, she will repeat an activity until the inner goal is accomplished. The unconscious urge to repeat helps the child to coordinate a movement or acquire some ability.
FINAL CALL: Calling all Redwoods Chaperones and Intent Forms
Please remember that all intent forms, for chaperones and 6th grade students, are due by October 1st. With the student intent form, there is also a $50, non-refundable, donation due. If you qualify, you may submit a completed fee waiver form in lieu of the $50.
The wording in this year's parent letter is slightly different than in past years to be in accordance with the school fees law, Rule 277-407. The letter no longer says that families are being "charged" for the trip; it says that there is a "suggested donation." The law states that schools cannot charge students in grades K-6 any fees. There is an exception listed that allowed 6th graders to be charged fees if 6th grade was part of a secondary program. Although MMA has a secondary program, 6th grade students at MMA are clearly part of an elementary program; therefore, students are not allowed to be charged a fee and a field trip counts as a fee.
What this means is that if MMA does not get enough students attending the trip to make the "suggested donation," the trip will have to be cancelled. Please note that any families that qualify for a fee waiver and submit these forms with required documentation will be granted a fee waiver and not have to pay for this trip. You can obtain the fee waiver form from MMA's website on the Forms and Documents page. The fee waiver forms should be submitted directly to René.
MMA already pays for about half of the total cost per child to attend the Redwoods trip. This cost includes academic programming, food and lodging at the Redwoods facility, plane ticket, train ticket, and a coach bus. Again, we will not be able to attend if enough families do not make the "suggested donation."
Please abide by all deadlines listed in this and subsequent parent letters. We will not be able to take students who submit their forms late as we purchase tickets that cannot be reimbursed.
A student may be prohibited from attending this trip if their behavior in school is unsafe, or otherwise causes school staff question if the child will be safe on this trip. A refund cannot be provided in these cases.
It's Jenn Adams, your friendly MAPA Room Parent Coordinator. Thank you for your time and effort on behalf of MMA, especially those that are currently volunteering as Room Parent. Room Parents play an important role in the classroom. They coordinate carpooling for field trips, post events on Track it Forward, and coordinate donations for class activities.
The following teachers do not have a Room Parent volunteer. Please contact them if you'd be willing to help them out:
Ms. Jenn Adams
MAPA Room Parent Coordinator
3-- MMA Cross Country @ Highmark
4--MAPA Meeting @ 8:45am
4--Fall Festival @ 4-7pm
8--MMA Board Meeting, 5:30pm
16--End of Quarter
17-18--Fall Break; No School
23-30--Red Ribbon Week
24-25--Junior High Intersession
24--Box Top Store (11:00am-1:00pm)
28--Junior High Parent-Teacher Conference Sign-ups Open
In case you missed it, click here to access the previous Family Newsletter.