Montessori Matters

September 14, 2018

Practical Life

Practical Life is an essential component of the Montessori Curriculum. What is practical life? It is everyday living skills and it looks different for every age. We are so fortunate that such an emphasis is put on practical life at our school. It helps nurture the WHOLE child and prepares them for their future.


What does practical life look like? It will look different for each age group. However, it is essential to recognize that for every age, there is a huge component of independence that is in place. It is also important to note that the independence did not happen over night and centers around the prepared environment that allows them to be successful.


  • Infant/Toddler - A child may pour their own pre-measured drink into a glass cup. They may help prepare a meal. The child will be responsible for taking care of their own dishes.
  • Primary - A child may work on pouring or cleaning skills at a work station. Students may help prepare snacks or meals. Children will be responsible for cleaning up their own messes.
  • Lower Elementary - A student may learn how to sew a button in fibers. Children will be responsible for reading recipes and creating a meal for their friends. They will be responsible for serving themselves their snack and lunch.
  • Upper Elementary - A student may have a weekly job to take care of the class pet or water flowers. Students will help prepare and set up snack for their friends daily. Students will help develop and plan for the week's snacks and meals.
  • Middle School and High School - A student will be responsible for his/her own work and deadlines in class. Children will work on campus in our horticulture program caring for our plants and grounds. Students will be responsible for cleaning up their enviornment at the end of day.


With all of this in place at school, there is a great opportunity for it to carry over to home. Again, independence will not happen over night and as parents you will need to prepare your environment to allow your children to be successful, but practical life can be an essential part of your home life.


  • Allow your children to help care for home pets (feeding, cleaning and giving them water).
  • Keep snacks and food at appropriate levels for your child to make their own snack choices. Label and discuss appropriate amounts and serving sizes.
  • Allow your child to help prepare a meal. For older children, have them read recipes, prepare a grocery list, make the meal and even clean up.
  • Let your child help with chores such as laundry, loading dishwashers (they already do this at school) and vaccuming.
  • Have older children research insurance prices for vehicles, track the expense of gas in their vehicles, help budget for a family vacation (let them help plan what to do).


Practical life can sometimes be messy and will not always be perfect, but as a community we can feel good in knowing we are preparing independent, life-long learners.

Dates to Remember

September 17-28 - MAP testing 2nd-9th Grade

September 18 - Toddler Two pot luck dinner

September 20 - Upper Elementary Field Trip to Paris Mountain State Park

September 20 - Middle School field trip to Sky Top Orchard

September 21 - Primary Planet PJ Party

September 25 - Toddler Three pot luck dinner

October 1-5 - Yearbook portraits -- class schedules will be announced soon

October 12 - Early dismissal, see note below


*Note: Toddler parents please be sure to check out the sign-up forms attached to your child's classroom door for your class' potluck dinner.


*Note: October 12 is an early dismissal day for Professional Development for teachers. All programs closed. No extended day or childcare will be available.


The Early Release schedule for Oct. 12 will be as follows:


Infant/Toddler dismissal---11:30 a.m.

Primary dismissal------------11:30 a.m.

Lower el dismissal-----------11:45 a.m.

Upper el dismissal-----------12:00 noon

Middle School dismissal---12:00 noon

High School dismissal-------12:00 noon

Toddler One Potluck

Families from Toddler One got together Tuesday for a potluck dinner to get to know each other and build friendships. Toddler Two will meet this coming Tuesday and Toddler Three the following Tuesday. Mark your calendars! Below are a few pictures of this week's event.
Big picture

Cross Country Meet

Some of our cross country runners participated in a meet on Monday at Nettles Park. Carter beat his PR by almost 10 seconds despite the icky conditions (multiple puddles and muddy hills!) so we are super proud of him! Weather permitting they will be at Wren High School on Saturday for the "Hurricane Invitational" - quite fitting actually!
Big picture
Big picture

Science as Art

Upper elementary students were able to observe a high school chemistry class performing an experiment and make accurate observations using their five senses about the chemical reaction between sodium bicarbonate and vinegar. The artwork created by the experiment is now hanging in the upper elementary classroom.

Nurse's Notes

Immunization records:


As a reminder, September 20th is the 30 day deadline for Immunization record compliance. All students must have a South Carolina DHEC immunization record on file in the MSA Health Office within 30 days of admission or the first day of school. If you are a transfer student from out of state or country, all immunization records must be transferred to a SC DHEC Form at your physician's office or a South Carolina Health Department. If the student has received any additional immunizations in the last year, a new record must be submitted to MSA. Any student not in compliance with South Carolina's Immunization mandated guidelines must be excluded until a immunization record has been received. Please make every effort to meet this deadline so there is no interruption in your child's educational experience.


School closures:


MSA continues to monitor the weather conditions and the possibility of inclement weather as a result of Hurricane Florence. Any MSA school closure, early dismissal or delay of school will be communicated via MSA's reverse notification system. As a reminder, MSA follows Anderson County District 5 regarding closure due to weather related situations. Please check local media, WYFF, Fox News for all school closings.


Hurricane safety:


Please take a moment to review the great information in this Kids Health article on addressing Hurricanes with children prior to the storm this weekend.


With safest regards,


Susanna Merriman, RN

Jeff Bezos Announces New Project

We are excited to hear of a new initiative by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos to create Montessori-inspired pre-schools in under-served communities. Please check out the following excerpts from this statement released by the American Montessori Society:

“We were thrilled to read the news of Jeff Bezos’s $1 billion charitable initiative, Day One Academies, to launch high-quality, full-scholarship, Montessori-inspired preschools in historically under-resourced communities.


We are honored that Mr. Bezos, a Montessori alum, sees the value of Montessori education. His vision to bring it to underserved communities reflects the spirit of Dr. Maria Montessori’s philosophy and her belief in children as the eventual purveyors of worldwide peace and social justice. I know that you, as dedicated and passionate members of our Montessori community, share that belief too, and I hope you will join us in celebrating all the good that can come from this ambitious project!”

Adding Montessori Matters Recipients

Have family or friends that would be interested in receiving Montessori Matters? Please use this form to submit requests for additional recipients of future issues of the newsletter.

Parent Education Survey

Parents, please make sure to fill out the parent education survey that was emailed out on Wednesday.

Montessori School of Anderson

Our mission is to nurture the whole child, physically, intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually, preparing students for academic excellence, lifelong learning and responsible, caring lives.
Big picture