Events and Info: Oct. 31 - Nov. 4, 2016, at Dundas Valley Montessori School

strata-autumn-market-poster-2016Saturday! Saturday! Saturday!Check out the "Fun Family Events" section for details...

Thank you.What a night! The joyful buzz of conversation, the beauty of Strata’s incredible natural setting - and the food - oh the food. Who would have thought that a 5-star dining experience would be offered at a Parent Dinner? Thank you to everyone who came, and for helping to support the ongoing development of Strata as a standard-bearing, exemplary adolescent school.

Toddler Community and Elementary Workshops

As promised, we have details for this week's Toddler Community and Elementary level Montessori Workshops. Both workshops will take place on Thursday, Nov. 3, from 3:30-4:00, in your child's Montessori environment.

  • Toddler Community Parents: Your topic will be "Independence." In preparation for this workshop, please read the chapter called "Help Me to do it Myself," starting on page 76, in How to Raise an Amazing Child the Montessori Way, by Tim Seldin. If you don't have a copy, let us know and we will find one for you to borrow. Please RSVP to and let us know if you will be able to attend. Full day children will have care in our Toddler Garden and will be ready for you to pick up at four o'clock. We look forward to seeing you all and getting to share some more of our philosophy with you.
  • Elementary Parents: Your children's Montessori guides will be presenting part 1 of a two-part workshop series. Part 1 is "Characteristics of an Elementary child - at school." Part 2 of the series is on Dec. 1 when the topic will be "Characteristics of an Elementary child - at home." Elementary children are welcome to enjoy some extra after-school time on the playground while you are taking a turn in school.

Elementary Activities:

Lower Elementary Swimming and Gymnastics: 

  • Swimming: students will be walking to and from the Dundas pool where they will participate in swimming lessons. They will return to DVMS in time for 3:45 dismissal. Each class is divided into two groups based on swimming ability and are guided in swimming instruction by the pool staff. Please ensure that children bring a swimsuit that they can put on and take off themselves, a towel, and goggles and/or nose plugs as they desire and/or require. Please make sure goggles are adjusted to fit. The swimming activity is also more enjoyable for children if they are wearing clothing they can change in and out of without assistance, and if their swim gear is carried in a bag they are able to easily and securely carry themselves.

The kids will have the opportunity to learn gymnastics at a fully equipped gym with certified gymnastic instructors. Kids will be on Floor, Trampoline, Tumble Trak (50ft long trampoline) as well as mini trampoline and beam. They will learn safe landing positions, as well as basic gymnastics. Kids should wear shorts and t-shirt to the gym, have hair tied back and no jewellery (stud earrings are fine, no hoops or dangly earrings); no bare feet in the gym.

  • The children will swim on either Monday or Friday, and gymnastics will also be on Fridays. We have made up a handy schedule you can print out and stick on the fridge (click on the “Open in new tab” arrow at the bottom right corner to expand and download):

  • Upper Elementary Parkour: Upper Elementary students will be learning parkour on Friday, Oct. 14, 21, 28, and Nov. 11, with the fine folks from Play Project. Parkour will take place out of DVMS (no drop-offs, pick-ups, or bus times to keep track of). Students will be split into groups of 12 and will participate in turn throughout the day. (Nov. 11 will be a half-day parkour day as the kids will be at the Dundas Remembrance Day ceremony in the morning). Please make sure they wear or bring appropriate outdoor physical activity attire on parkour days. If it’s raining, they will be in the gym.

But wait, there's more:

  • PD Day Friday, Nov. 4. DVMS is Closed: DVMS staff will be attending the annual Canadian Association of Montessori Teachers (C.A.M.T.) conference. Casa East guide Elizabeth and Toddler Community guide Kate are presenting at the conference. Elizabeth will discuss "A Joyful Approach to Reading" at the Casa level and Kate is presenting a workshop entitled "A Toddler’s Welcome: How To Create Space For The Youngest Children in Our Growing Montessori Communities."

  • Halloween at DVMS: Halloween is a very exciting time of year for children. There's candy! In order to maintain the integrity of our Montessori environments and work cycles, we ask that Halloween remains a fun family event and that costumes and candy remain at home. It's tempting, we know, but they'll still love you even if you don't slip a few pieces of candy into their lunch or pockets this time of year. Thank you, we appreciate your support and help with this very much.

  • Outdoor Clothing: Just another reminder to please check the forecast for the day before sending children to school. The fall weather is here to stay and the children will be outside for recess and other events in all weather. Indoor recess only occurs when rain is falling from the sky during the recess hours (11:30-12:30 for Elementary; 12:00-1:00 for Casa) or when the thermometer hits -15 air temperature or -20 wind chill factor.  Warm coats, layers, rubber boots, splash pants, and water-resistant gloves or mittens are all essentials at this time of year (as well as a change of clothes at school for the inevitable mud and water adventures). Thank you.

  • Elementary Pizza Day: Two of our Upper Elementary boys have organized a pizza day fundraiser to take place on Thursday, November 3:
    • Order form envelopes went home this past week; please return them no later than Monday, October 31. There is a drop box for order forms in the foyer.
    • They will be ordering from Dundas's own Emilio's pizza.
    • Pizza is $2/slice for cheese and pepperoni slices.
    • Children on Hot Lunch will still receive a catered meal; pizza slices will be an addition/supplement to hot lunch.
    • They are raising money for their Montessori Model United Nations trip in May.

  • Holiday Concert: I know, I know -- no winter holiday talk until after Halloween, but in the interest of advance notice and family planning (not that kind...), our annual Holiday Concert will take place on Friday, December 23 (which is the last day before the winter break).
    • Children should be dropped off at DVMS between 8:45-9:00 when they will go to their Montessori environments to get ready and run any last minute rehearsals.
    • Parents are invited to stay at DVMS to enjoy some delectables from theStrata Café.
    • The big show will run from 9:30 to 10:30ish, after which Strata will re-open their Café  for last-minute treats and chats before we head off for the winter break.
    • If you or your child is not able to attend the concert this year, please let your child's Montessori guides know.
    • There is no school or performance for Toddler children this day.
    • We are back on January 9 this year (well, next year).

  • New Hot Lunch Menu: The Fall/Winter menu for Hot Lunch starts on Monday, Oct. 31. You can keep track of which week in the 4-week menu cycle we are on by checking the calendar. The menu is posted on the foyer bulletin board and on the "Hot Lunch" page at (under the Fees and Forms tab).

Fun Family Events:

  • Strata Montessori Adolescent School Autumn Market: This is it. It's time for the annual Strata Autumn Market sale this Saturday. Oct. 29, from 10:00-2:00. Many full days and late nights have gone into the preparation for this event, and it is a very important part of the children's year. They have worked hard to succeed and we can all help ensure their success by enjoying what is forecast to be perhaps the last nice, warm weekend day before the cold comes for good.
Here is the menu for Saturday's Market:
Cafe 10:00am-1:30pm:
Breakfast Sandwiches
French Toast
Lunch 11:30am-1:30pm:
Mexican Quesadilla
Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Tomato Soup

This is a great opportunity to do a little early holiday shopping, and spend a fall morning or afternoon at the beautiful Strata property.

It is also a chance to support the Strata students’ micro-economy ventures. Micro-economy ventures such as the Autumn Market and the weekly cafe provide adolescents the opportunity to interact with parents, teachers, and members of the public on an economic level as a provider of goods and services.

Micro-economy ventures evolve from classroom activities and offer adolescents a chance to step into the adult world of commerce and gain experience and independence through the responsibilities associated with the dynamics of production and exchange. A variety of learning in planning, budgeting, accounting, money-handling, customer service, hospitality, supply and demand, advertising, and public relations occurs through the micro-economy ventures.

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