Casa dei Bambini, Newsletter #5, January
Newsletter of Casa dei Bambini, #5, January
Dear Parents,
good afternoon!
In this newsletter we would like to share what children are studying in January, what upcoming event is planned. We would also like to tell you about the whole procedure of how we celebrate birthdays in a Montessori classroom in detail.
Winter Clothing
We remind you that children need:

• warm snow pants for recess,
• a spare pair of gloves,
• a scarf

Please label pants, gloves and boots!
January Themes
In January we will discuss Arctic animals. Most of the year in the Arctic reigns dark polar night. Everything is covered with ice and snow. Summer comes only for a very short time, just for two to three weeks.
Reindeer inhabit the Arctic deserts. Polar bears travel on the drifting ice. They hunt for seals, walrus, and fish. Whales are also found in the polar waters of the Arctic.

Antarctica, the southernmost continent, is covered with a multi-meter ice shell.

The main attraction of the coast of the southern mainland are penguins. These birds do not fly, but swim and dive very well. The largest among them, the Emperor penguins, are over a meter tall. The most numerous and curious penguins are the Adelie penguins. They often come to "visit" polar explorers at research stations.
The seas surrounding the Antarctica are much more populated. In the waves of the sea seals frolic, including leopard seals. The bodies of predatory killer whales flash.

Huge whales swim in the waters of the Antarctica. Among them is the largest one, the blue whale. There are sperm whales, saves and fin whales.

Unfortunately, a lot of whales were extinguished as a result of whaling. Now these animals are protected. We will talk about all this with the children in January.
Music Club
January, 24th
3:45 - 4:45 pm
We continue the tradition of meetings of the book and music club. In January we will gather and sing songs together on Thursday, January 24th, from 3:45 till 4:45 pm. We invite all interested parents with their children to our meetings.

Please bring a healthy snack for tea and a good mood!
Birthday Celebration in the Classroom
Montessori groups have their own birthday party ritual. Of course, some of the details vary by group, but there are a few highlights.
What needs to be prepared?
For the birthday you need to prepare the child's "timeline of life". Parents can print multiple photos and bring them to class. It can be prepared it in advance with the child, we suggest that the child chooses the photos (s)he likes most: starting as a newborn, where (s)he is 1 year old, and then one photo for each year of the child till the present.

The photos can show not only the child, but also other significant people in his/her life: parents, relatives, brothers and sisters or friends. Please put the photos in a folder or an envelope. On the back of each photo, parents are asked to write the age of the child. You can also add interesting facts from the life of the child.

In the classroom or at home, the child will make a book together with an adult, where (s)he will paste these photos in chronological order. Children love to reflect and tell friends about themselves. Older children can make explanatory captions for each photo: where they are, how old they are, who is depicted in the photo together with the child. A child can show his friends photos and talk about them at any time.
How the actual celebration happens?
Directly on the birthday, the teacher invites all the children in the group to sit in a circle.

In the center of the circle a candle is lit, which symbolizes the sun. Around the candle we put the names of the months. This can be done by the child or his/her friends. We explain to the children that the earth revolves around the sun. And each turn takes exactly one year. The child, whose birthday it is, takes the globe and goes around the candle ("sun") as many times, as many years spent on earth. While the child is walking, the teacher tells something significant about this year of the child's life, and the children sing a song.

Then each child congratulates the birthday child and offers best wishes. The birthday child makes a wish and blows out the candle.

Treats for the classmates
A small treat is eaten after lunch.

Important! Food should be brought in portions, for each child.

At your discretion, this can be: fruit, small cheese or biscuit pastries (homemade pastries are always welcome), gingerbread or lollipops from "Vkusville" on a stick.
Please note: you should not bring chocolate, nuts, honey, fat cream, molasses. It is not helpful and may cause allergies in children.
Balls, toys, candles, hats, bubbles etc. are not needed in the class – they are very exciting and distracting for children. Thank you for your understanding!
With kind regards,

Susanne Ostrovskaya
Ekaterina Rodionova
Rhoda Snyder
(C) Montessori School of Moscow