Thursday, June 23, 2011

End of the year keepsakes

As the end of the year approachs faster and faster, I am working even harder to get my little packages ready for all the children leaving for primary school... One of the first thing I got done about 2 weeks ago, was the children's graduation pictures. I LOVE them. And I know that parents will cherish them for a long time. 

And Rachel and I have made sure that their work copies were up to date. This is something the children are extremely proud of. For me, it is a way to show parents what the children are now able to achieve. As I mentioned in a previous post, I do not like working with worksheets. However, I have to admit that worksheets help to target the exact skill or concept being taught and provide the practice students needed to master the concept in question. I use them only to finalise the learning process. Above all (and this is the main advantage I can think about), worksheets provide tangible record of what has been learnt. And I like parents to see concretely and on paper what the Montessori method has taught their children and how it has developed their mathematical awareness as well as their pre-reading writing skills.

(sorry, it is upside down!!)

And then of course, we need to talk about the yearly portfolios.  Each child has a folder for work samples and administrative documents. I save children's work about once a week (or so). Samples of work include a self-portraits, drawing, stencil art, samples of their writing, paintings etc.. I also take pictures of the children as they work and play. At the moment, I am using all these samples to turn them into keepsakes for parents to cherish.These are wonderful memories to have. This year, it is taking me quite a while to finish them as I am glueing each piece of work on black paper before laminating them. But the result is quite effective. See for yourself:

IToday I sent one of these portfolios home. I have to say that the hard work was worth it when I saw how happy the mother was. She was very tearful and couldn't stop thanking me. I know myself how emotional I am when when I look back on what my eldest daughter did in preschool (she is now 12). These portfolios immortalise a part of our children's childhood and freezes their innocence in time.
What do you think? How do you make yours?

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