End of Semester Newsletter

Athena's End of Semester Newsletter
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The child is endowed with an inner power that can guide us to a more luminous future. 
 - Maria Montessori

Sync your calendars with our Google Calendar for Parents and stay tuned to important school events!

CLICK HERE
View the 2020-2021 School Calendar
IMPORTANT DATES

Friday
January 1st

7th Tuition Installment Due

Friday 
January 1st

New Year's Day

Monday
January 4th
Staff Development Day

NO SCHOOL

Tuesday-Friday
January 5th-8th
Virtual Learning

Monday
January 18th
Martin Luther King Jr. Day
NO SCHOOL

Wednesday 
January 20th

Community Zoom Call with Sera Bonds


Student Birthdays
1/3 Mason K.
1/6 Ronan B.
1/8 Jane L.
1/12 Emilia C.
1/13 Lillie A.
1/13 Harrison C.
1/14 Sevie M.
1/15 Gia C.
1/17 S. Isaac
1/20 Habiki H.
1/22 Cole W.
1/26 Lila D.
1/28 Caspian R.
1/29 Judge S.
1/30 Story P.
1/31 Vivian C.

Staff Birthdays
1/25 - Joy J.
1/31 - Drew F.
"Tips and Tools" for Parents
 
Many of us look forward to chilly days at this time of year, although, not everyone in the family is thrilled about wearing a jacket! If you're a parent who experiences daily jacket battles with your child, try one or two of these tips at home.
  • Take stock of the weather. Does your child really need a jacket? On occasion, it's ok to let them experience the consequence of the chilly weather. This helps them recognize symptoms of chill in their body (i.e., cold hands and noses, shivering lips, goosebumps, etc.), and as they begin to build more self-awareness, chances are they will begin asking you for a jacket!
  • Give a choice. Ask, "Do you want to wear your purple jacket or your yellow one?" This helps your child feel more empowered. Just be sure that the choices are acceptable to you!
  • Use a natural consequence. When you have the option, tell your child, "If you wear your jacket, then we can go to the park." If-then statements can be handy in this situation!
  • If you have to set a boundary, follow-through. Being consistent is probably one of the more difficult things to do as a parent, but if it's freezing outside and wearing a jacket is non-negotiable, follow through on your boundary. Use a thermometer if you have to, and show your child that once it reads a certain degree, wearing a jacket is not currently a choice. The more often you follow-through with this boundary, the more likely they will be to acquiesce (at least, hopefully, with a few less tears!)
  • Finally, learn about the jacket-flip! This fun method for putting on a jacket has been known to work for even the most stubborn of our friends. Ask your child's guide about it or learn more by clicking: TRY THIS AT HOME!
Need tips or tools for something specific? Email us, and we may include it in our next newsletter!


Hello to our new starters!
John Tots 1
Paxton Tots 1
Reyan Tots 1
Sunny Tots 1
Merit Tots 2
Griffin P1
Adler P6
Aaryan P6

Tots Graduating to Primary!
Shepp, Tots 1 to P1
Graham, Tots 1 to P3 
Gia, Tots 1 to P4
Simone, Tots 1 to P4
Oaklyn, Tots 2 to P5
In Gratitude for a Beautiful Fall Semester

On January 18th we will celebrate the legacy of
Martin Luther King, Jr. 
Why is MLK Day always on the third Monday of January?
January 15th was MLK's actual birthday. 
What is different about MLK Day from other national holidays?
MLK Day is the only national holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities. 

In this time of COVID, honoring Dr. King will look different than in years past, but that does not mean we should just stay home and relax. This is a time to talk to our children about justice and equity. MLK was a champion for social justice and for people of the working class.
He was assassinated before he could lead his planned
Poor People's March  to Washington. 

At Athena Montessori Academy, we honor Dr. King and his work throughout the year by normalizing and humanizing him. The children are already familiar with his face because photos of him hang in the classrooms, not just in January, but all year. 
We also take care to humanize the man behind the march. Dr. King was a family man, a community man, and a man of faith. He was a regular human being who did great things.
It is vital for our children to know that they too, can do
great things. 
Please visit the website of
The King Center to learn more about supporting MLK's vision of a just, equitable world for all. 


Ways to Give Back to Our Community

Some of the organizations we love to donate to:
Safe Place/Safe Alliance- you can donate new items as well as non-perishable foods. You can view their
current needs wishlist for more ideas. Their mission is to create a just and safe community free from violence and abuse.

Central Texas Food Bank- due to the pandemic related economic hardships, the food bank is currently purchasing a million dollars of food each month. Right now all
donations are being matched, providing double the meals with each gift.

Some places we love to volunteer:

Keep Austin Beautiful
Generation Serve
Central Texas Food Bank
Keep Austin Fed 
The Volunteer Center
 
Montessori Corner
 
"Why is my child spending all their time at school cleaning, spooning, and pouring?"

One monumental section of the Montessori Curriculum is called Practical Life. Practical Life is filled with lessons that give the child exposure, practice, and the opportunity to master simple everyday practical life skills.  Some examples are: cleaning a spill, spooning, pouring, food prep, and learning to button.

For many adults, it is confusing why it may be important for children to spend hours, days, and years practicing these lessons over and over.  The first indication that this work is vital to the children’s development is how much children starting at 18 months are drawn to this area of the classroom and their ability to focus for long periods of time. These lessons can help a child lengthen their ability to concentrate while also teaching independence and attention to detail.

Many parents want their children to clean up a spill they may make or to clean up after themselves, but we often forget that we have to teach them the many steps the go into completing this skill.  Cleaning up a water spill has several steps and Practical Life lessons break down each of these steps for the child. These lessons also will increase the child’s ability to organize their works that will be of value once they are doing more advanced language and math works.

When children use these types of lessons they also improve their fine motor control, which is important for when they are ready to learn to write. When older four and five years old visit the Practical Life area, they are usually seeking lessons that can ground them and seek a sense of order.  Very similar to when we might need a cup of coffee and read the paper in the morning. In short, there is much more that is happening for the child that goes much deeper than it appears on the surface when they are working in the Practical Life area of the classroom. These lessons are of equal value as reading and learning to complete mathematical equations. Practical Life is the foundation for all the curriculums that lead to more advanced work.

 Here are some resources to integrate some Practical Life activities in your home: 


The Montessori Notebook  Montessori Services
 
 

Stay tuned to Your email for the Zoom Calendar for your child's Learn From Home plan for January 4th-8th.

ENROLLMENT NOTICES for ALL FAMILIES 

Current Families: 
Thank you to all who have continued to support Athena by sending us your friends and family who may be interested in joining our community. As a reminder, if you have a younger sibling you wish to enroll in the future, please submit an application for them by visiting our website: https://www.athenamontessoriacademy.com/admissions
Siblings of current families take priority in our waiting pool, but only if we have an application on file :) 
Prospective and Waiting Pool Families 
Thank you so much for your transparency and communication over these past few months regarding your intentions to join us on campus this year. The children remain our North Star and we intend to make sure every student joining our campus lands in a community where they will have peers and also be met with aspects of Montessori curriculum that will suit their developmental needs. 
We will complete the bulk of  re-enrollment in December, and will begin offering spots to our future TOTS programs in January and will move to Primary in early February . We appreciate your continued interest in our programs. 
SCHOOL SUPPLIES

Need labels? Oliver's Labels has labels for backpacks, shoes, clothes, lunch boxes, and water bottles!  Click on the image above to purchase customized labels and Athena will receive 20% of your purchase!


For Small Hands carries a wide variety of items for children, all child-sized, fun and developmentally-appropriate!  Use our code below, and Athena will get a percentage of the sale to apply towards materials for school.
CODE 165595
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Athena Montessori Academy

Office:
1503 Morgan Lane Austin, TX 78704
Parking Lot:
1400 West Ben White BLVD Austin, TX 78704
Tel: (512) 494-6237
Fax: (512) 693-0065
“Athena is Montessori with flexibility. What a perfect combination of Montessori learning and respect with fun. As a working parent I find the after care options and extracurricular programs to be priceless!”
- Rose Koransky (Child now attending Zilker Elementary)