Summer Parent Newsletter

The full summer 2013 Parent Newsletter is not archived for public access. Below are the important information and dates contained in the newsletter.Summer renovations: looking out from the new Arts Centre.

A mid-summer hello from all of us at DVMS. We want to share some staffing updates with you, some renovation and class moving news, some important dates for August and September, some general housekeeping, and the 2013-2014 class lists (Please note: class lists are not included in this publicly accessible article). There is a lot, so please hang on to this email for reference.We have two new full time staff members joining us this fall. Siona Neale-Majewski is our new Elementary Arts Specialist who will work with the Lower and Upper Elementary guides to integrate the arts program (visual art, music, drama) into the overall curriculum. Siona holds a Bachelor of Musical Arts in Education from the University of Western Ontario, MACTE certified Montessori Early Childhood Education diploma from the Canadian Montessori Teacher Education Institute, and is completing a Bachelor of Primary Education Studies this fall from Charles Sturt University. She has worked as an English, Music, and Montessori teacher in Warsaw, Poland. Siona will be working out of our new Arts Centre space (see below for more details).Terrence Millie is the guide for our new Upper Elementary environment. Terrence received his AMI diploma at the Elementary level from Fondazione Centro Internationale Studi Montessoriani in Bergamo, Italy. He lived in Beijing, China, for five years while teaching and administrating at The Family Learning House and Daystar Academy.Not only does Kathleen now have a new friend to play with in Upper Elementary, both classrooms will be moving. The Upper Elementary program will now occupy the rooms formerly known as Lower Elementary East and West. We made this move to better suit the developmental and educational needs of the students, and to better suit the dynamics of both the Lower and Upper environments.The Upper move puts all of the children in a connected environment, giving them the opportunity to work together with children in the corresponding class, allowing for their burgeoning need to develop and explore social relations.Kathleen's class will now be known as Upper Elementary West ( Terrence's class is Upper Elementary East ( Lower Elementary environments are each moving to separate rooms. Noeleen's class is moving to the former Upper Elementary room and will now be known as Lower Elementary South ( Rob's class is moving to a newly renovated space across the hall (former art and music rooms) and will be known as Lower Elementary North ( art and music rooms are moving to a newly constructed space in the former lunch room. The new Arts Centre environment will house music, visual art, and drama. The library remains the same, just relocated to accommodate the new arts space. (see photo above: looking out from the new Arts Centre; instruments waiting to move in).Learning Resource has moved to a smaller, quieter, more central space attached to Lower Elementary South, and Tony finally has his own, separate office space.As most of you know, Casa East and North assistants Catherine and Jodi are expecting new additions in the coming months and will each be leaving us for a year. Catherine's maternity replacement in Casa East is Elizabeth Flenniken. Elizabeth owned Absorbent Minds Montessori in Burlington for 20 years, is AMI Casa trained, a mother of 3, and has been teaching for more than 30 years. Holly and Elizabeth co-taught at Absorbent Minds for five years and their experience together will be a great benefit to Casa East.Jodi will be with Casa North until November. A number of candidates have been interviewed and we will announce her maternity replacement as soon as we decide on the best person for the environment.Tony EvansDirectorDundas Valley Montessori SchoolMontessori Adolescent School of

Events and Information

Important Dates to Plan For

Monday, August 19Hot Lunch registration deadlineFriday, August 23MASH goal-setting meetingsand Odyssey pack drop-offThursday, August 29, 10:00-11:00 a.m.New Casa Student OrientationTuesday, Sept. 3, 8:30 a.m.First day of schoolWednesday, Sept. 11, 3:00-4:00 p.m.Elementary Parent OrientationMonday, Sept. 16 - Wednesday, Sept. 18New Parent InterviewsTuesday, Sept. 24 - Wednesday, Sept 25Photo DaysThursday, Sept. 26DVMS Community Dinner

Event and Information Details

Hot Lunch RegistrationHot Lunch enrollment forms can be submitted online through our website(2013-2014 menu is also available at that link). The hot lunch enrollment deadline is Monday, August 19th, so that we can hit the ground running, with full bellies, starting Sept. 3.

MASH Goal-setting Meetings and Odyssey Pack Drop-offOn Friday, August 23, MASH will host goal-setting meetings with each parent/student in the adolescent program. Half hour meetings will start on the half hour or hour between 12 noon and 6 pm. Please visit to schedule your meeting time on a first come, first served basis.Students will also be required to drop off their complete pack for the Mattawa River canoe trip Odyssey. They depart on Sunday, August 25.
New Casa Student OrientationOrientation for new Casa students and their parents will be on Thursday, August 29, from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. Students will be greeted by their classroom guides and escorted to their learning environments. Parents will remain in the gymnasium for the parent orientation session and will meet their children on the playground when both orientations are over.We ask that parents refrain from accompanying children to their classrooms, even if there are tears (there will be a few tears). Setting clear expectations and procedures from the beginning makes the overall transition to schooling much easier, for both children and parents (mostly parents).
First Day of SchoolAnnnddd...we're back. The first day of the 2013-2014 school year is Tuesday, September 3. We will be handing out calendars that day.
We kindly ask all students to arrive at 8:30 every day. The Montessori day consists of 3-hour work cycles. The purpose in having long, uninterrupted blocks of work time is to allow students to select work freely and become absorbed in work that has a particular fascination for them at each point in their development. Interruptions, no matter how valuable the alternative activity might seem to be, disturb the children's focus, concentration, and intellectual exploration.
Elementary Parent OrientationThis orientation session, from 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 11, is open to all elementary parents, both Lower and Upper. You are strongly encouraged to attend to chat with the teachers and go over some of the routines and expectations for the year.
New Parent InterviewsInterviews for new parents at each level will take place Monday Sept. 16, Tuesday Sept. 17, and Wednesday Sept. 18, from 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. Sign-up will be shared closer to the date.
Photo DaysPhotos will be taken over the course of two days this year: Tuesday, Sept. 24 and Wednesday, Sept. 25. We will let you know which day to wash their face and brush their hair. Photos will once again be taken by the wonderful Lindsay Palmer.
DVMS Community Dinner -- NOTE CHANGE OF DATE FROM ORIGINAL NEWSLETTERThe annual DVMS Community Dinner - where we invite you all to come enjoy a fabulous meal, some pops and some grape juice, and a whole lot of fun conversation with really smart, loving, made-the-best-choice-for-their-kids-education parents just like you.Set aside the evening of Friday, October 4. Let us know if you need help finding a sitter.
DVMS Email ContactsWith the adding and switching around of classrooms we have also changed some classroom email addresses. All Casa environment emails are the same, but check the introduction article above for new Elementary level email addresses.
Learning Resource Specialists Marissa and Shannon can still be contacted at: lrt@dvms.caSkye and Jason are best reached at: admin@dvms.caTony is at:
ImmunizationsWe are required to keep a record of your child's up-to-date immunizations. When your child has any updates to their immunizations we require these on file. Please ensure that your child's immunizations are up-to-date and if they have had any updates in the last year please notify Skye in person or at
Personal Information Change FormDuring the course of the year, if you happen to move, change employers, get a new phone number, or a new email address, please fill out a personal information change form. These can be obtained in the office or can be filled out and submitted electronically on our website.
Dismissal, Alternate Pick-UpThe school day ends at 3:30 and it is important that we account for each child's dismissal. Please ensure that your child says goodbye and shakes the hand of the staff member standing at the gate. This ensures that each child's dismissal is noted on the attendance sheet. If someone other than the primary caregiver or contact is picking up your child, please fill out an alternate pick-up form located in the office at the beginning of the day, or, if this is not possible, by email. Our staff may request to see photo ID for alternate persons picking up students. We do encourage an active social time after school, however, due to the number of students, parents, and siblings in the playground it can become chaotic, so we ask that you supervise your child once you have arrived and ensure that if your child becomes disorderly, you quickly take them home.
The After School ProgramOur after school program commences at 3:45 and runs until 5:00. If children are not picked up by 3:45, you will be invoiced for participating in the after school program. The charge is $2.50/half hour
Telephone & Email List DistributionEvery year we distribute a parent telephone and email list. This encourages community and helps when arranging play dates and organizing carpools. If you do not wish to be included please let Skye know during the first two weeks of school.