Fossils Presentation

Our art room was the setting for a presentation by TMS parent, Jason Schein, Assistant Curator of Natural History at the New Jersey State Museum, who talked about fossils, dinosaurs and dinosaur bone with the Lower Elementary classes. We learned that fossils are actually rocks. By studying them and evidence surrounding them, we can learn about the habits of dinosaurs and even discover certain commonalities between dinosaurs and animals living today. Mr Schein brought in many artifacts – some of the fossils he showed were real (and VERY old) and some were replicas. Mr Schein then had the students “dig” through containers that were filled with sand and fossils, record their own observations, and ask questions.

The Missing Voice in the Education Reform Debate

Laura Flores Shaw, Huffington Post, January 2012
Over a century ago, Dr. Maria Montessori discovered through scientific observations of children that they are not empty vessels to be filled — they are intrinsically motivated doers. She saw that providing a hands-on learning environment that valued choice, concentration, collaboration, community, curiosity, and real-world application produced lifelong learners who viewed “work” as something interesting and fulfilling instead of drudgery to be avoided. Now, research in psychology and neuroscience continually validates Dr. Montessori’s conclusions about children and learning, and Montessori schools are flourishing. Read more>>

Why Guessing Is Undervalued

Annie Murphy Paul, Time, November 2011
Quick, take a guess: About how many feet high is an eight-story building? Approximately how many tons does the average pickup truck weigh? About how many oranges must be squeezed to yield a gallon of juice? Maybe you gave these your best shot — or maybe you skimmed right over them, certain that such empty conjecture isn’t worth your time. If you fall into the second group, you may want to reconsider. Read more>>

The Neurology of Montessori

Lori Bourne, Montessori For Everyone, July 2009
Those of us in Montessori education see the positive effects of Montessori on a daily basis. We watch as children’s fine motor skills are strengthened, their reasoning skills sharpened, and their independence encouraged through daily interaction with the prepared Montessori environment. But we can watch all of that and not actually know how the Montessori method achieves the results that it does. Is it just a happy stroke of luck that Montessori materials seem to promote brain development? Read more>>