UPPER ELEMENTARY with Pamela Kinn and Donna Wegge

The Upper Elementary study of ancient civilizations has begun. We began with a visit to the Springfield Museums at the end of October. In addition to visiting the new Springfield History Museum, the Upper Elementary Class visited the George Walter Vincent Smith art museum. We learned about how mummies were created and saw some artifacts from ancient Egypt. We also learned about some Roman myths and participated in reading a Roman myth play. Many of the statues in that museum are from Greek and Roman myths. It was a great start for our unit. Thank you to Leeza Cable, Ann Kindblom, and Erin Rhindress for helping with the trip.

The study of ancient civilizations is closely related to the history of writing. The students have learned that the period of human history before people had written language is called pre-history. Civilization begins with the ability to write events down. We have discussed the development of language and will be doing some work based on this lesson. The history of earth's earliest civilizations will be woven into this framework. It is a wonderful topic with endless possibilities for the students to learn and grow in many areas.

Our Australian studies have focused on animals this month. Each student has chosen an animal from each of the Vertebrate categories (fish, amphibian, reptile, birds, and mammals). We will be sharing what we have learned as a group next week. They have enjoyed this work and have learned about animal classification in the process.

The Upper El class will be giving a December concert for friends and families. This will be a very informal event meant to share the things we have been doing in music class. Look for a note with details soon.

Pioneer Valley Montessori School, 1524 Parker Street, Springfield, MA 01129 • 413-782-3108

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