Sixth Grade is such an important year for kids in Montessori Elementary. It’s culmination year, and they have quite a few adventures during which they get to know themselves and their capacities more deeply. Their imaginations and their expertise are highly developed and they are ready for so much more! Twelve year olds are heading into adolescence, which means that the bigger world takes on greater significance and they are hungry for meaningful experiences in it. Also, they become highly social and dependent upon each other. With all of that in mind, we have a few 6th-grade specific updates for you about Island Projects, Sixth Grade Trip and our new Promotion Day.
First, your kids will soon be entering the home stretch of their Island Projects. In order to adjust the timeline of dates, I met with them this week to re-set due dates for their current work. They have a big group of drafts due on Monday afternoon. This includes their timeline, a written account of a major upheaval, and biographies of two main people from the history of the Island. They must bring completed drafts to school on Monday in digital form (flash drive). They will work together, and with me, to begin revisions of this work. The final revised components are due on Thursday. These dates were proposed and agreed to by the kids, and they know that most of this work must happen at home.
Island Night is May 13, and we’re beginning to get excited about it. Please alert your extended families and friends!
Second, we’ve begun talking about the end of year Sixth Grade Trip. This is a trip that the Sixth Graders themselves plan together. It will be local, within a drive-able distance and be either one or two nights. It must cost a reasonable amount of money. We ask them to identify a budget, and set a fundraising goal. As a group, they are responsible for raising half of the money (they have many fun ideas about how to do that). We ask that you, as parents, cover the other half. Typically, they need to budget around $200 per person total to cover transportation, lodging, food and spending money. This can change depending on their plans and their aspirations. This is the ultimate culminating practical life experience for them, and they seem incredibly excited!
In the week or two after Spring Break, we will begin creating plans. In the meantime, it will be fun if you could help your child brainstorm fun ideas. In our brief discussion, we talked about the Olympic Peninsula, Portland, the Washington Coast, a “tourist” weekend in downtown Seattle.
Finally, I want you to know that we have re-designed our approach to end-of-year Graduation. We will be having Promotion Day during the school day on June 16 (the last day of school is June 17, and it will be pure fun for everyone!). During the Elementary Promotion Ceremony, we will specifically honor the graduating Sixth Graders. This will be an Elementary-specific event instead of an all-school. We are hoping to make it personally meaningful and momentous for them, and celebrate their accomplishments and their transition to Middle School in a way that reflects the incredible closeness and collaboration with which they’ve lived their MCH school lives. If you would like to work with us to help create this new milestone event, please let me know. I’d love to have input and help!
Please let me know if you have any questions or input.
It’s going to be a fun, busy spring!
Ms. Nicole & Ms. Alyx
El Salon Turquesa Co-Lead Teachers