Events and Info: Sept. 26-30, 2016, Dundas Valley Montessori School

dsc_0746Laundry and haircuts this weekend, school photos take place on Monday, Sept. 26, and Tuesday, Sept. 27. We take class photos, individual photos, and photos of siblings together. A choice of packages will be available for purchase from DVMS Montessori Mom and photographer Lindsay Palmer.We will stick to the following schedule as best we can:


  • The Toddler Community class photo will be done first, followed by toddler individual and sibling photos.
  • All Casa class photos. We will then move on to the half-day Casa children (and their sibling photos) in the order of Casa South, Casa East, then Casa North. It is our goal to have those accomplished by 11:30. Wish us luck!
  • Throughout Monday afternoon we will take remaining Casa (and their siblings) photos.


  • We will take all the Elementary class photos first thing followed by individual and sibling photos in the order of Lower South, Lower North, Upper West, and Upper East.

If you have Upper or Lower Elementary children with Casa or Toddler siblings at DVMS, they will all have their individual photos taken at the same time as sibling photos, on Monday. Elementary children who have their individual picture taken on Monday, with siblings, will be a part of class photos on Tuesday, and we're sure they will happily blame their younger siblings for having to look nice two days in a row.Please do your very best to have children at school on time, and to avoid early pick-ups as much as possible on photo days. Thank you.

Friday, October 7, is Field Trip Day:

  • Casa children will be spending their morning with you, their Montessori guides, and their friends at Westfield Heritage Village. We have been enjoying the incredible atmosphere and history at Westfield on these Casa family field trips for many years; you'll love it. Parents are asked to attend Westfield with their child; DVMS staff will be there, but we cannot have children without parental supervision. The program at Westfield runs from 9:45 - 11:45. After the tour, you are invited to stay at Westfield for a picnic, after which you are welcome to take your child home and get the weekend started (Monday, Oct. 10, is Thanksgiving), or bring them to DVMS for the afternoon where we will have more casual programming; children returning to DVMS can be picked up at 3:30 per usual. Please let us know at if you intend to bring your child back to DVMS for the afternoon. Thank you.
  • Lower Elementary children will be venturing to Frootogo Orchards where they will participate in an "AppleTour":

Education about the stages of apple growth, care, varieties, dwarf trees and more. A wagon ride to the orchard. A visit to our animals to learn about their species, habitat, diet, etc. A trip to Playland to enjoy climbing, sliding, and jumping on straw bales, digging in giant sandbox, and having fun on our riding toys. Puppet Show in our 100 year old barn. A sampling of freshly sliced apple.

This will be a regular school-hours day for Lower Elementary children: please drop them off at DVMS at 8:30 as always and they will enjoy a morning Montessori work cycle before departing DVMS by school bus at approximately 11:30. They will require a litterless packed lunch as a picnic will be their first stop. They will return to DVMS by school bus and are expected to return by approximately 2:30. Children can be picked up at DVMS anytime after 2:30 if you want to get the weekend started a bit early (Monday, Oct. 10, is Thanksgiving).

  • Upper Elementary children will be rafting on the Grand River with the Grand River Rafting Company. They will require a litterless packed lunch.  Here's the "What to Bring" guide from the rafting company:
    Hats, sunscreen, lip balm, sun glasses, water, camera, footwear that can get wet and stay on your feet. Bathing suits and clothing that dries fast. Strings for those who wear glasses! Please do not wear denim pants, they never dry out. We suggest nylon material that dries easily. For cool weather dress in layers so that you can strip down as needed with a nylon jacket and splash pants on top! Gloves and a hat are good. And have warm waterproof footwear.

This will be a regular school-hours day for Upper Elementary children: please drop them off at DVMS no later than 8:30. The school bus will be departing for Paris (not that Paris) at 8:30. They will return by bus to DVMS for regular dismissal at 3:45.

  • Toddler Community children will enjoy a regular school day at DVMS.

Elementary Activities:

  • Elementary After School Clubs:  Our after school clubs are underway. The cost is the same as after school care ($7.00 per one-hour session) and the clubs run from 3:45-4:45 on their respective days; billing will be at the end of each session of clubs. If your child signs up for a club you will be charged for each week regardless of attendance out of respect for the clubs and for those who are running them:
    • Tuesdays - Lower Elementary Run, Jump, Throw Club combined with Upper Elementary cross-country training with DVMS Montessori Moms Lindsay Atkinson (of Power Push Training) and tri-athlete Christine Kennedy.
    • Wednesdays - Upper Elementary Soccer Club with Seline Baysan.
    • Thursdays - Elementary Math Games Club. "Math with Kath” (Upper Elementary West Montessori guide Kathleen MacKinnon).

If your child would like to join any of these clubs, please email Upper Elementary French Specialist Selin Baysan is your contact person, at that email address, for club related questions.

  • Lower Elementary Outdoor Adventures: To begin the year, the Lower Elementary students will be participating in an outdoor community-building program based out of DVMS (no need to pick up or drop off anywhere different) on Friday Sept. 9, 16, and 30. Please ensure they wear or bring clothing appropriate for the outdoor weather each Friday -- layers are good, as well as sturdy outdoor running shoes. Lower Elementary children do not need to bring a water bottle for activities as each child is given one for at school use.

  • Upper Elementary: Upper Elementary activity for Friday, Sept. 30, TBA. We'll let you know as soon as details are finalized.

But wait, there's more:

  • Free Speech Screening: Many of you will remember Sarah Costelloe, who  was with us last year after moving from England providing learning resource support and running the after school program. Sarah is a speech-language pathologist by trade and is now working in that field. Sarah and her colleague at Anderson Speech Consultants will be offering free speech and language screenings at DVMS on Friday, September 30. If you are interested, please click here for more information and for consent forms.

  • Parking Lot and Neighbourhood: Each year we send out a couple of these reminders to please take your time, slow down, and be considerate in the parking lot and neighbourhood at drop-off and pick-up times. We inevitably receive complaints each year from your fellow parents and our neighbours about cars driving too quickly and about inconsiderate parking blocking driveways and other cars. To ease congestion:
    • We ask that elementary-level students be dropped off a few blocks from the school to give them the opportunity to walk in. A number of families have arranged meeting spots at nearby parks, for example, so that children can experience walking to school with friends.
    • Elementary pick-up is at 3:45. If you have children in the elementary program, please do not plan to arrive at DVMS before 3:45; this staggered pick-up eases the congestion in the neighbourhood and parking lot.
    • Please do not park along the fence (on the walkway side, where the no parking signs are).
    • When exiting the parking lot, please turn right (Kemp Dr. loops right back around to Central Park).

  • Special Thanksgiving Hot Lunch: Our hot lunch provider, Food for Tots, is providing a special Thanksgiving Meal in place of regular lunches on Thursday, October 6. The menu includes Roast Turkey, Gravy, Mashed Potato, Peas and Carrots, Cranberry Sauce, Dinner Roll, and Fresh Fruit. Students with dietary considerations will receive relevant, Thanksgive-y, alternatives.

  • Elementary Soccer Tournament: Some of our Upper Elementary students are organizing a recess soccer tournament for Thursday, September 29. Upper and Lower elementary students can sign up at school and there is a $2 entry fee per child. The Upper Elementary students are raising money to put towards sport field upgrades at DVMS.

Fun Family Events:

  • 4th Annual Hamilton Walk for Down Syndrome: This great event will take place on Sunday, Oct. 2, at Bayfront Park, from 8:30-12:00. One of your fellow Montessori parents is President of the Down Syndrome Association of Hamilton and her sons, including Owen, are all students at DVMS. If you would like to support Team Owen in the walk, you can do so by clicking this link:

  • Fossils: For a few more weekends, the Giant's Rib Discovery Centre at the Dundas Valley Trail Centre, 650 Governors Road, Dundas, has fossils on display from the Royal Ontario Museum. The fossil display is for all ages and there is a parking fee of $10 per car per day. Click here for more info.

  • Know of any fun family events coming up that our Montessori community would enjoy? Let us know.

Ok, you earned it for reading to the end. Photos from the past week at DVMS: