Events and Info at DVMS | Nov. 13-17, 2017

DSC_7827This week:

  • Nov. 15 Parent Education Evening
  • MMUN meeting
  • Lower gymnastics and yoga
  • Upper dance
  • Parent Observations and Interviews Nov. 20-24
  • New Hot Lunch provider
  • DERS
  • Staff greeters
  • Books for babies
  • Remembrance Day
  • Photos!

Parent Education | Wednesday, Nov. 15, 5:30-7:00

  • Parent Education Evening: Wed. Nov. 15, 5:30 - 7:00.  "Montessori at Home and Digital Citizenship."

Tony will be starting off the evening with a talk about digital citizenship. We will then move to the Montessori at Home portion of the evening.Strata Montessori Adolescent School students (and supervisory guides) will be providing childcare for DVMS Casa and Elementary children. Pizza will be provided and there is a suggested donation of $10 per family to help cover costs and to support the Strata students' micro-economy ventures. Please register your children for childcare and include any food allergy/restriction information.

From Tony:In the most timely manner, I was witness to a profoundly inspiring Montessori parenting talk at the CCMA Montessori conference last weekend. Wendy Calise talked of the challenges of the modern parent, and shared with us an article that outlined these challenges and offered solutions.We will all pull out of it what we want, and inevitably not every parent will (or should) support all of the ideas. Where we all agree is that we want our children to succeed as adults.We ask you to take 10 minutes from your busy schedules and read the attached article. I think it will help us all frame our discussions. Our job as educators and parents is to support our children in order to reverse engineer great people.

Elementary Activities

  • Montessori Model United Nations: On Wednesday, Upper Elementary families with children in their sixth year of Elementary received an email regarding this year's MMUN trip. Just a reminder, parents of year six Upper Elementary students are invited to a meeting with the Upper Montessori guides on Wednesday, November 15, at 4:30 (just before the Parent Education event).

Lower Elementary
  • Gymnastics and Yoga: Both Lower Elementary classes will begin gymnastics or yoga in November and into December. Gymnastics will take place at the Hamilton Gymnastics Academy and students will be bused to and from. The class that is not attending gymnastics will participate in yoga at DVMS. From the gymnastics academy:

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.

  • Lower Elementary South (Noeleen/Christine) will go to gymnastics on Fridays, Oct. 27, and Nov. 10 and 17 (Nov. 3 is a PD Day).
  • Lower Elementary North (Jodi/Kathleen) will go to gymnastics on Dec. 1, 8, and 15.

Upper Elementary
  • Dance: Upper Elementary students will be participating in a dance program, at DVMS, on Friday Nov. 10 and 17, and on Friday Dec. 1 and 8. They will once again be led in dance by Chimira Andres, an Honours Integrated Science student at McMaster University who is also the current president and captain of the Mac Dance Competitive Varsity Dance Team. She has been a principal dancer/graduate from the School of Cadence Ballet in Toronto, ON. She also has been a senior dance instructor for 4 to 16-year-old dancers in the City of Mississauga dance program for approximately 7 years, and is a working contemporary dance artist with the Parahumans Dance Company. Upper students will dance with their class on Friday afternoons and should wear or bring appropriate, loose clothing.

Information and Reminders

DVMS Parent Observations and Interviews: Parent observations in  your child's DVMS Montessori environments, and Parent-Teacher interviews with your child's Montessori guides, will take place throughout the week of November 20-24.Please note: there is no school on Friday, Nov. 24, due to the Parent-Teacher interviews.
  • Parent Observations: Observations will be held between 9:00-11:00 a.m. on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, Nov. 20-22, and are an opportunity for you to spend time quietly observing in your child's Montessori environment prior to your Parent-Teacher interview. Observation sessions are 20 minutes and are for parents only (there will be opportunities for grandparents and other family members to visit during Show Me Day and Grandparents' Day in February and May, respectively). Please read the "DVMS Observation Guidelines" prior to your visit.
    • Observations are not held in the Toddler Community as it is difficult for the toddlers to have mom and dad come into the environment and then leave without them.
    • The Upper Elementary Science Fair takes the place of observations for the Upper environments. Observations at this level tend to be less valuable as students move away from materials-based activities and into more abstract work.

Casa and Lower Elementary parents, please select your child's Montessori environment and an observation timeslot here.

  • Parent-Teacher Interviews: Interviews will be held from 4:00-8:00 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 23, and from 8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 24. (Both Lower Elementary environments will also have interview timeslots available the following week, between 2:00-3:30, during their phys. ed. and music classes; Lower South on Tues., Nov. 28, and Lower North on Thurs., Nov. 30).

Interviews are 20-minutes in length and childcare is available during your interview session.

This year, parents can also sign up for interviews with Mary and Lisa in the Casa dei Bambini environment, and with Lucie or Selin for Lower and Upper Elementary French interviews; these interviews are optional.

Toddler Community interviews will take place on Friday morning only and are for parents of toddlers in their second year. Look for an email from your children's Toddler Community Montessori guides with more details and information.

We ask that you please be on time for your interview and that you do not stay beyond the scheduled interview timeslot so that everyone can stay on schedule. Thank you.

Please select your child's Montessori environment and an interview timeslot here.

  • New Hot Lunch Provider: Starting Monday, Nov. 13, DVMS will have a new hot lunch provider: The Lunch Lady -- a franchise program that serves the Hamilton area. We have been attempting to find a balance between using a small local caterer and keeping the costs reasonable for you. Although we loved the quality of the food from Food is Love, their prices were increasing to a point that we were not able to justify passing the cost on to our families.

The Lunch Lady is located in Ancaster, which means our food will be delivered 15 minutes before the children are served, and best of all the prices will remain the same for you. We are hoping that we will get the best of both worlds with them -- the logistics and quality of a larger company, but the comfort of dealing with a local person.

The staff has sampled her food and it was given two thumbs up!

Please note that some schools use this service for parents to order individual meals for their children and have them delivered one to five times per week. This is not the same service that we are providing for DVMS families. Our lunch program will run as before: family style, five days per week, with no change in cost to you.

Remember, you can sign up for the DVMS Hot Lunch program anytime. Click here to sign up and to view the November Lunch Lady menu.

  • DERS: A number of DVMS Montessori guides are presently completing DERS training. What's DERS?

The Developmental Environment Rating Scale, or DERS, is an important new tool developed by the National Center for Montessori in the Public Sector (NCMPS) for measuring what matters in Montessori and other developmentally responsive environments for children.  The instrument measures child and adult behaviors, as well as classroom environment characteristics, proven to support development in three areas: executive function, linguistic and cultural fluency, and social fluency and emotional flexibility.  The DERS is the first research-backed tool for quantifying the things Montessori classrooms do well, and which have been shown to support children’s development across a wide range of domains and with lasting effects.

  • Staff Greeting in Morning: Hope you and your children made some new DVMS staff friends at drop off this past week; you will continue to see some new faces greeting your children this month. Different staff members will be taking a couple of days each to greet children so that guides at the different levels can get to know all of the DVMS Montessorians. Please feel free to introduce your children, and yourselves.

Fun Family Events

Another quiet weekend on the event-listing front, but it might be a good time to dive into big piles of leaves.

  • Remembrance Day: Each year, our Elementary-level students attend the Dundas Legion’s Remembrance Day ceremonies and participate by laying a wreath. This year, Remembrance Day and the ceremony are on a Saturday, so our classes will not be able to attend. If you would like to attend the ceremonies with your children this year, here’s the schedule for Saturday, November 11:

10:15am – Parade falls in at Memorial Square/Dundas Firehall10:30am – Parade marches to Memorial at Community Centre10:45am – Memorial service commences


The weather's getting cold, but the Montessori is heating up!As always, let us know if you would like the full version of any photos of your children, or if you have any questions about the Montessori materials or jobs the children are working with.