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Montessory Centenary Exhibition in Toronto

No. 146

Aug. 18, 2016

No. 145

May 15, 2016

No. 144

Feb. 5, 2016


N E W S L E T T E R          NO. 145          MAY 15, 2016


All Parents and family members of graduating students are cordially invited to attend the CASA, ELEMENTARY AND ADOLESCENT end-of-the-year celebration and graduation on Thursday, June 16, 2016.


CASA GRADUATION, Thursday, June 16, 2016 at 10:00 AM


The Casa ceremony will begin at 10:00 am and end at 11:30 am.  After the formal ceremony in the gym, all Casa children and Casa staff will move to their classrooms at approximately 11:30 am to say good bye to each other. Please collect your child from his/her Casa classroom after the classroom farewell. There will be no lunch and afternoon program for Casa children.


ELEMENTARY and ADOLESCENT GRADUATION, Thursday, June 16, 2016 at 1:30 PM


The Elementary and Adolescent celebration will begin at 1:30 pm and end at 3:30 pm. There will be no after school program for Elementary Montessori students. We are aiming to end this part of the celebration at approximately 3:30 pm. After the formal ceremony in the gym, all Elementary children and Elementary staff will move to their classes to say good bye to each other. Please collect your child directly from his/her elementary classroom after the classroom farewell.


In the Upper Elementary class this year, we have a group of 14 students completing the 9-12 level. The farewell of this special group after nine years experience in Montessori always brings back special memories to all of us.


In the Adolescent class this year, we have 14 students completing the Adolescent Program. It is again a historic experience, as they are the sixth group of adolescent graduates leaving Humberside Montessori School. 




Please read the teachers’ end of the year news in the following pages. We hope you can get some sense what an exciting year it was.


Please use the neighbourhood parking lots during graduation ceremonies as our parking lot will not be able to accommodate all cars.



Thank you to all parents for selecting Humberside Montessori School as a destination in your child’s life. It is only through parents’ commitment that our school can fulfill its purpose. Thank you! We would also like to thank the Parents’ Association Co-Chairs – Rosemary Condillac and Meera Malik and all the volunteers for another great year and for embellishing the school through its activities. To families not returning to us in September, we would like to thank you for your interest in Montessori and for your trust and confidence in leaving your child with us.  


Have a great and safe summer! See you in September!


Molly & Felix





  • The annual tuition fee prepayment (fee schedule attached) is due on Friday, June 3, 2016.

  • The last day of school is Thursday, June 16, 2016.

  • First day of Summer Camp is Monday, June 20, 2016.

  • Last day of Summer Camp is Friday, August 26, 2016.

  • The first day of school will be Tuesday, September 6, 2016.

  • PLEASE NOTE THERE IS NO CAMP August 29 – September 2, 2016.




If you would like to enrol your child in the Summer Camp Program, please return your application form and cheque back to us ASAP. Spaces will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis. This program will be provided from our school location for children older than 4 years of age. Children will be bringing their own lunches, snacks, juices, etc. However, starting Friday, June 24, 2016, the children will be preparing one lunch per week. This will be a LIVING LIFE CAMP. Children will be involved in sports, music, cooking, swimming program, arts and crafts, care of plants, field trips, and lots of other fun things.


To ensure a space for your child, please pre-register in the main office as soon as possible. Certain weeks may be full and we may not be able to accommodate any last minute or same day registrations.





Anne Marie Murphy, the directress in Casa “A” will be moving to Elementary “A” as the new teacher for the 6-9 class. This is exciting for Ann Marie as she is also trained as an AMI Elementary Teacher and will be able to continue guiding children in the next plane of development. Thank you Ann Marie for many wonderful years spent in Casa “A”.


Elisa Song, our present staff member who is very familiar with children in Casa “A”,  will become the new directress in Casa “A”.


Elisa graduated from the MacMaster University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology. She received her AMI Casa Diploma from The Foundation for Montessori Education in 2012. Upon graduation she worked for two years as a Casa Directress. Elisa joined Humberside Montessori School in 2014 and worked in Casa “E” until December 2015. In January 2016 she opened a new Casa program at Humberside Daycare where she has been working as a Casa Directress.  Elisa will be spending the last three weeks of school, from May 24 to June 16 with children in Casa “A”. Welcome to Casa “A”.




Congratulation to Alison Grinton, the directress in Casa “D”, who is expecting her second child in October 2016. Alison will be taking her maternity leave during the 2016-2017 school year.


We are planning to relocate the Casa “D” environment to our daycare location at 411 Clendenan  Avenue.  All remaining children in Casa “D” will continue their Montessori work at our current location at 121 Kennedy Avenue.  As such, returning Casa “D” children will join remaining Casa classrooms   Casa “A”, Casa “B”, Casa “C” or Casa “E” in September 2016. We will communicate to parents the information about class placement for their Casa “D” children in due course. If you have any questions about the process please contact Felix.




Aasiya Sachwani, will be taking a leave of absence as of July 2016. Aasiya and

her family will be moving to Karachi temporarily, to take care of some personal matters. Thank you Aasiya for the many wonderful years you devoted for children in Elementary “A”. We will be missing you and will be waiting for your return in the future.


Anne Marie Murphy, our directress in Casa “A”, is also an AMI trained elementary teacher and will be taking over Elementary “A” as the new teacher for the 6-9 class. Ann Marie received her AMI Elementary 6-12 Diploma from the AMI Dublin Training Centre in Dublin, Ireland. Upon graduation she worked at the Children’s House Montessori School in Dublin.


We will be relocating Elementary “A” to the present location of Casa “D”. This will give more opportunities to all Casa children on the second floor to get familiar with the work in lower elementary class with more frequent, spontaneous visits.




We are excited to tell you about our new 9-12 class which will be located on the third floor in the current location of Elementary “A” and Kim Smith will be the new teacher.

Kim spent time living abroad in France and the UK, where she obtained two university degrees in music. She completed her AMI Elementary Montessori 6-12 Teacher Training in Toronto. Kim used to work as a Music Teacher in the Adolescent Program at Humberside Montessori. She is presently working as a 6-9 Elementary teacher in another Montessori school, and is very eager to join our  9-12 level. Kim’s son is also attending our Casa program.

We extend a warm welcome to Kim as she joins the Humberside Montessori School.




The annual tuition fee prepayment is due on Friday, June 3, 2016.  Please use the fee table below for your payment calculation.









Casa (AM)

2.5 - 3.5



     $8,800 -  $880 -   $320 = $7,600



3 - 6



  $13,300 - $1,330 - $500 = $11,470



6 - 12



  $13,300 - $1,330 - $500 = $11,470



12 - 14



  $14,800 - $1,480 - $500 = $12,820



NOTE: When paying annually, the prepayment discount above applies ONLY to first child in family, 10% discount applies ONLY to the second and third child.








Hot Meal Plan

Casa Full Day Only



Before School Program

 (7:30 am - 8:45 am)

  No Charge

   No Charge

After School Program

 (3:30 pm - 6:00 pm)



School Bus Service

 ONE trip per day




 TWO trip per day



NOTE: Bus price is per family (No additional charge for siblings on the same bus).


Please make cheques payable to HUMBERSIDE MONTESSORI SCHOOL.


NEWS FROM CASA “A” by Ann Marie Murphy


When I reflect upon Casa A this year the word “cycle” comes to mind: the ongoing cycle of activity or work, the three hour work cycle in the morning, the three year cycle and the cycle of life. I hope this will give you a sample of what can happen in a regular day in the life of your child. When a child completes a piece of work it is often referred to as completing a cycle of activity. Benjamin might choose to polish a glass mirror and Alicia clean some dull sliver, after which they place their dirty cloths into the linen basket to be washed by Jacob, who hangs them on the drying wrack. Then David notices that the dry cloths need to be ironed and returns them to the shelf, where the cycle begins again.


Roasting vegetables is a much sought after activity in Casa A. First a child sounds out the names of the vegetables he would like to purchase, another child might write the list on paper and then they will head to “No Frills” with Mirian. Returning to the prepared environment they wash, chop and season the vegetables. Thanks to Hunter we are now growing fresh herbs on our deck, to add to the flavor. At lunch they are served by the children and thereby completing another cycle of activity.


If you happen to wander into Casa A after recess, you might be lucky enough to be served afternoon tea by Sienna, in lovely China cups at a beautifully laid table. Naturally you need to have mastered all of the pouring activities and be very responsible when using boiling water. This is what can happen in the final year of your three year cycle. There it is again the word “cycle”. The above activities are all part of the Practical Life area, truly it is the backbone of a Casa environment, where children develop motor control and coordination, build concentration, independence, self-esteem and a sense of responsibility.  Working on all of this helps the child to be more successful in the Sensorial, Language and Arithmetic areas, of course many of these areas are also incorporated in Practical Life.


The cycle of life has also been evident in Casa A. We all enjoyed the company of Oscar, our beta fish for a year and a half, then one day a child informed me that Oscar had been sleeping for a long time. Some of the older children helped me to bury him in a large pot on the deck. We then welcomed Shelly to Casa A, a name democratically voted in. He was another colourful beta fish, a precious gift from Breccan. Suffice it to say that Shelly is now giving extra nutrients to the blooming flowers on our deck. Spring has sprung and we are reminded of the cycle of life and rebirth; many thanks to all, who donated beautiful flowers and herbs.


Muchas gracias to Mirian and merci beaucoup to Melanie for all their hard work, commitment and dedication to Casa A; ladies you are an integral part of our room.


I try desperately to put the brakes on at this time of year but to no avail, Oliver, Esme, Caroline, Sienna, Alexander, Liyon, Gabriele R, Breccan and Charlie are completing their cycle in Casa; it was an absolute pleasure working with all of you and I wish you the very best.


There is also one more person whose cycle in Casa “A” is concluding: me! Goodbyes are never easy as many of us know from drop offs, so I will heed my own advice and be short and sweet. I will not be far away though, just at the other end of the hall, in a new elementary class. I would like to say a special thank you to you for choosing Montessori and trusting your wonderful children in my care. It has been a marvelous journey, from which I have acquired a treasure trove of amazing memories to last a life time. For this I say “Go raibh mile maith agat!”.



NEWS FROM CASA “B” by Marc Vespa  


As summer time approaches I am reminded about the importance of outdoor time with young children.  As a parent and educator I am very cognizant of how outdoor time reflects upon an individual’s overall well-being and health.  When my two children were younger it was obvious what regular outdoor time did to their overall day.  They slept better, they ate better and they behaved better! One of the best outdoor activities is going for a walk.  Taking a young child for a walk is so simple and yet so profound.  Make sure to slow down and walk at your child’s pace.  Be prepared to stop suddenly and often; to look at insects, dump trucks, a stick on the ground or whatever it may be that catches your child’s fancy.  While walking strike up a conversation!  Talking and walking go hand in hand.  Within that short amount of time along your walk you are engaging with your child in so many ways – physically (holding hands), emotionally (with a real nice chat together) and spiritually (by taking the time to walk with your child, giving them your complete attention and showing them how special they are).  Put that smart phone away and tell your child “The phone stays home – I’m going for a walk with a very special person!” Have a great summer, everyone!


With the end of the school year right around the corner I would like to thank a few people.


  • Thank you to all the parents this year that helped to make this year so memorable and wonderful.  Many thanks to all the parents who brought in fresh flowers throughout the school year.  The flowers are a big part of our class and much anticipated every week by the children (and staff). 

  • Thank you to all the support staff here at Humberside!  That includes Natalie in the office, the kitchen staff, the bus drivers and those other wonderful people who help out during the course of each day.

  • A big thank you to Khadija and Martina.  What a blessing it is to the children and myself to have your presence, guidance and patience in the class everyday!

  •  Thank you to our wonderful student teacher, Ivanna!  Ivanna is now a graduate of the Foundation for Montessori Education and I wish her the best of luck for the future.  Her work with the children over the course of this school year was much appreciated by all of the children and staff of Casa B!

  • Lastly, a big thank you goes out to the graduating children of Casa B.  Your spirit, friendship and smiles will be missed! 



NEWS FROM CASA “C” by Aušra MacLeod  


Another school year is coming to an end and it has been a wonderful year for Casa C. We have 13 children graduating this year, which makes Casa C a very mature group.  All throughout the year the children were engaged in their activities with considerable emphasis placed on reading, writing, geography and math.  The children were particularly interested in geography this year and spent hours making large maps of different continents and countries.  They took great pride telling me that the maps were placed on the walls in their rooms at home and used for reference.


The emerging elementary level characteristics enabled the children to collaborate on some projects.  They worked in groups and produced some fantastic maps that would stay at the school.  There seemed to be an agreement amongst the children that one should be framed for Casa C and the other one should be given to Felix and Molly to be put up somewhere within the school.  There was a strong suggestion from one of the children that we check Ikea for framing possibilities!

While the older children were immersed in geography (which, of course, required reading, writing, visual discrimination and a lot of strategizing skills), the rest of the children were focused on all of the other wonderful activities within the environment.  The cloths were being washed and the objects were being polished by the younger children, while the movable alphabet and collective math operations were very popular amongst the 2nd year children.


This is just a short story which, I hope, will serve as an illustration of how the younger children observe, learn and develop an interest in the activities of an older child.  As the older children were making maps and taking them home, I was helping the children to roll up their map into a tube and tie it with a rubber elastic.  After a few weeks of this happening, a younger child approached me and said: “Ausra, my mom is allergic to these elastics, so when it is my turn to make this map, when I am bigger, I will not be able to take this elastic home”.  Of course, we discussed a few possible solutions and settled upon me tying a ribbon around a rolled up map which the child is already planning to make in the future!


I would like to say goodbye to the wonderful graduating children: Caroline, Ethan, Evan, Henry, Jack, Jessica, Kaeden, Luka, Madeleine, Mia, Rushford, Stefan and Victor.  I have greatly enjoyed the time that we have spent together!  I wish you all the very best in the future.


I would like to thank all the parents for your support this year.  I enjoyed every moment of my time spent with your children.  Thank you for attending the workshops.  I hope you found them informative. Thank you for bringing in the fresh flowers – arranging them into small bouquets is one of the most popular activities amongst the children.


My continued gratitude goes out to Kostanca and Michelle.  Thank you both for your energy, patience, enthusiasm and hard work.  I also wish to thank all the staff members at the school who contribute daily to the success and well-being of Casa C children.  I wish everyone a safe and exciting summer! 



NEWS FROM CASA “D” by Alison Grinton  


What a Wonderful Year It Has Been In CASA “D”


As the year comes to an end I can’t help but think, where did the time go?  This school year has flown by.  All of the children in the class have grown physically, emotionally and developmentally.  There were children at the beginning of the year who couldn’t do up their own zippers, but now they are doing up their own and their friends too!  Children in September who couldn’t read, that are now reading stories to the whole class.  It is amazing how one school year can bring so much change!


My favorite part of the classroom is the kitchen.  Our class is always cooking or baking something delicious.  Some of the highlights this year have been butter tarts, cinnamon baked apples and rosemary-roasted potatoes.  Khedi always jokes that we should be opening a restaurant. 

The most exciting part for the children is when they get to ring the bell at lunch and announce to the class what they have made and how much each child is allowed to take!

It really is amazing.


I would like to thank my assistants Khedi and Sabeen.  You truly are amazing and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for all of the hard work and effort you put into this class.  We are a great team! I also want to thank all of the parents for their support!  Thank you for the dedication you have made to this school and to our class.


And now to the graduates of 2016 (Elizabeth, Zoe, Maribelle, Veronica, Kayla, Jackson, Ben, Cole, Miles, Jai), it has been an absolute pleasure having you in my class. It feels like we have just gotten to know each other so well and now you are


moving on.  You are each amazing in your own way and I feel blessed that I have been able to spend this time with you.  But I know that you are ready for your journey into Elementary!  I wish each of you the best!


At the beginning of this letter I mentioned all of the change that the children go through.  But I would like to announce that I’m going through some change as well!  I’m pregnant with my second child and due in October.  I am very excited! 

I wish all of you a great summer and a great year next year!  I will be sure to drop in and visit!



NEWS FROM CASA “E” by Daniella Ortega


“Our care of the child should be governed, not by the desire to make him learn things, but by the endeavor always to keep burning within him that light which is called intelligence.”
― Maria Montessori

Believe it or not, summer is just around the corner. The year seems to have flown by again this year. Yet who can be surprised that time flies when our days are so full of great work, play, joy, learning, exploring and enjoying watching Eleanor rolling around the classroom each morning in her purple hamster ball.

Her tiny presence has been felt by all. She reminds us to be gentle, speak softly, walk carefully, and take care to provide fresh food and water daily. Thank you to all the children of Casa E for your loving attention to our newest class pet.

We wish you all the best in elementary Alexandra, Chloe, Claire, Cooper, Donald, Elise, Ilyas, Myles, Noelle, Roya, Taiga, and Zayd!

Thank you to all our new and returning families for your kindness and support this year, especially considering our struggles to protect the integrity of the Montessori Method.

I would especially like to thank Valerie, Elisa and Ana for all your hard work and dedication to Casa E. We would not have been able to do it without you.

I would also like to thank all the Humberside staff, Felix and Molly for all your help and support.


NEWS FROM ELEMENTARY “A” by Aasiya Faris Sachwani


The child is capable of developing and giving us tangible proof of the possibility of a better humanity. He has shown us the true process of the construction of the human being. We have seen children totally change as they acquire a love for things and as their sense of order, discipline, and self-control develops within them.... The child is both a hope and a promise for mankind.” (Montessori M. - Education and Peace)


It began like any other day.  Students came into the class and prepared the class and themselves for work.  Two third-year students decided to bring out the Racks and Tubes to work on Long Division.  One more student came up to them and asked if he could join.  A hundred-board was added.  Then another student joined, followed by two more.  They visited other classrooms and brought in additional material to make the work possible and finally seven students sat down to work on Long Division using a seven-digit divisor!  The excitement was tangible and the work brought them so much pleasure that they decided to do one more, and then another and then another.  As an adult observer, I could not help but be amazed at the sheer beauty of this work.  The finesse with which the students negotiated the terms of their “collaboration” would have been a true lesson for many adults.  They knew exactly whose turn it was to share or to exchange beads – their focus was impressive.  All this happened in spite of the fact that a balloon kept whizzing past them; a couple of students had set up two chairs attached by a long string and were “tweaking” an experiment on motion.  The date on the board indicated that there were a few weeks left to the end of term and the realization dawned upon me that these third year students were ready to move on!


Eleven wonderful children are completing their third year in a mixed-age classroom; the benefits of this experience can be summed up best in Dr. Montessori’s words. Cooperation rather than competition becomes a natural response to all sorts of different situations and challenges”. This is evident not only in everyday situations in the classroom, but also in their preparations for going out and during their actual forays outside as well.  This year the third year students have collaborated with each other and with their younger friends to plan and execute both small-group trips and whole-class adventures. 


They have planned and organized trips to the ROM to study Ancient Rome and Pompeii; to the Ontario Science Centre to count the cambium rings on large tree-cookies; to Humber River to cheer for salmon swimming upstream; to Lake Ontario for fossil hunting … the list can go on.  The most incredible part of these “exercises” – the part that Katy and I have had the privilege of observing and guiding - has been the excitement-filled, almost giddy, preparation and planning by the students.  Of course so much of the going out happens without me, Katy has the honour of accompanying the students; but in our conferences upon her return, she always reports on how the students fared outside.  During one such recent conference her comment was “these third year girls – they don’t need me there any more – at all!” 


Dr. Montessori referred to education as an “aid to life”. At the end of this term a group of amazing children, who entered Elementary A three years ago as first years, will be leaving the classroom, better prepared for what lies ahead for them and for what the next phase of their education will offer them.  They will return and visit I am sure, only to find that the chairs have “grown smaller” and that “everything feels so different now”.  To these very special children, to Avery, Haley, Isabel and Kya; to Oliver, Rohan, Niki, Henry, Sebastian, Luke and Nate – I extend the warmest wishes for a bright and happy future.   May they be successful, happy and equally excited about life and learning wherever they may be!


Sadly, at the end of this academic year, I will be taking a leave of absence.  My family and I will be moving to Karachi temporarily, to take care of some personal business.  I will miss each and every child I have had the privilege to work with.  I am sad that I will be missing out on the opportunity of seeing some of them complete their three-year cycle in the 6 – 9 environment.   I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the parents for their amazing support!  The work that we do with your children is made possible only because of your unwavering belief in the work and the philosophy of Dr. Montessori.

I would like to recognize that this incredible year would not have been possible without the constant hard work and unfailing support of two very special people, Katy and Jane.  They have spent the year working hard with equal measure of concern and care, and with complete faith in every child.  Thank you both!  I would also like to thank Adam, Natalie, Andrea, Elizabeth, Pat, Veronica, Christina, Frances, Michelle, Jorge, Pacita and Tina; every day our students are touched by the small and simple gestures of generosity that you extend towards them, from the very simple act of being there to greet them, to the consistently graceful response to the hundredth request for white glue!


Finally - to Felix, Molly and Mia - thank you for continuing to facilitate this wonderful journey that is Montessori – for the parents, for the staff and most especially for the children! 


"No matter what we touch, an atom, or a cell, we cannot explain it without knowledge of the wide universe.  What better answer can be given to those seekers for knowledge?  It becomes doubtful whether even the universe will suffice.  How did it come into being?  How will it end?  A greater curiosity arises, which can never be satiated; so will last through a lifetime.  The laws governing the universe can be made interesting and wonderful to the child, more interesting even than things in themselves, and he begins to ask:  What am I?  What is the task of man in this wonderful universe?  Do we merely live here for ourselves, or is there something more for us to do? (To Educate the Human Potential, p. 6)





It has been a busy year of new discoveries, new friendships and new memories.


Centimetre by centimetre we continue to hand sow our “patchwork” tablecloth with hopes of finishing it by June. It is painstaking work, which has engendered in all of us, much admiration and respect for the seamstresses and tailors of old. Many thanks to Alex W’s mom for the fabric donations.


“Going Out” trips this year included the Science Centre, ROM Crawford Lake, TSO, Mackenzie House and of the Bloor West Village. The programmes attended offer the children; a further extension to their work, the opportunity to demonstrate their independence and develop their ability to navigate the TTC. They have become very proficient and no “wrong ways” this year, quite impressive for 6-9 year olds!


Reading is always a joy for the elementary child and this year one author, Beatrix Potter, became an absolute favourite. Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddle-Duck, Mr. Jeremy Fisher and Mrs. Tittlemouse became the talk of the classroom.  



Little did I know that a lesson about modern art would ignite so much passion for Modigliani, particularly the style in which he painted his portraits.

Both the artists and the models took their roles very seriously and it wasn’t long before the discovered their own “portrait” style.




Without the help of many outside our room we could not do all we do. Thank you to the Parent’s Association for your continued support, to Natalie and Mia in the office and Felix and Molly for all you do to make Humberside what it is. Many thanks to Jane for her tireless work with the children. Many thanks  to Adam for keeping everyone fit and healthy in gym this year.


Chère, Neslihan, merci beaucoup pour votre travail acharmé. Nous ne savons pas ce que ferions sans vous!


I would like to wish all the students moving onto the Upper Elementary every success and happiness. We will miss you.


I hope everyone has a wonderful and relaxing summer and  I look forward to seeing you all again in September.



9-12 REPORT from Niamh Grech and Jim Mallen


Once again, we have reached the end of another successful year.  Our third years are already planning the packing for Quebec: that means only one thing; another year draws to a close! As with all programs, their success is dependent on the contributions of many people. ‘Going Out’ is such a vital part of the elementary program, and we are fortunate enough to have staff and parents who value this aspect of the program. Many people have assisted us in enriching our class by allowing opportunities for the children to experience the larger community of our school.


This year we continued to visit the numerous facilities in our community and the province. We had another incredible experience on our over-night trip to the Kawartha Outdoor Education Centre, which we plan to repeat next year. In addition to our Physical Education program, our students also participated again in soccer games with Maria Montessori School, invitational cross country events, basketball, track and field, and swim meets. Several programs included: The Terry Fox Run, curling, rock climbing, and skiing at Centennial Park and Mount St. Louis Moonstone Resort. The artistic aspects of our program were complemented this year with visits to St. Marie among the Hurons, Casa Loma, Montgomery Inn, Spadina Museum, Mackenzie House, and Black Creek Pioneer Village.


Our students continued our tradition and volunteered their time in the local community. The third year students visited Grenadier Retirement Residence, where they participated in weekly activities to engage with the residents. Both classes also performed Christmas carols for the senior’s community at Grenadier Retirement Residence. Our first and second years assisted in the compilation of care packages for families in need at the Sharing House.


We would also like to thank our school community for its fundraising during Pizza and Subway lunches, and our countless Friday bake sales!  We have also planned two more trips to end the year. Our third years have chosen Quebec City as their destination. We would like to thank all who generously supported the children’s fundraising efforts for this trip. While we are away in Quebec City, the remaining students will have the opportunity to visit local attractions yet to be determined.


We both feel so fortunate to have worked with all the children and feel privileged to be involved in their development. It is always a sad occasion when we must say goodbye to our third year students, but we feel confident that they will be excellent ambassadors for Humberside Montessori School.  We would like to thank:  Adrian, Alexandra, Andre, Benjamin, Drew, Ela, Eva, Evelyne, Gabriella, Joshua, Kayla, Nigel, Sava, Trinity, Veronica, Xander and Yahvi for the fond memories they have given us.


We would also like to express our gratitude to our assistants Shawn and Lorrée for their daily support in all our endeavours. Their dedication and hard work ensure the smooth operation of our classrooms. We would be lost without them!


To conclude, we would like to thank Felix, Molly, and Mia, our parents, all the support staff and the Parent’s Association, who supported our aims, challenges, and goals for the children this year. We hope you all have a happy and safe summer.





It is hard to believe that the year is already coming to an end! It has been a great year of French for the upper elementary students. In the Fall/Winter, both the second and third year students put on a play for the rest of the school. What a success! It was wonderful to see such effort and enthusiasm put in to making props, memorizing lines and full group practices! In the winter, the first years went on an outing to see ”Gregg LeRock”, a Canadian musician who writes, composes and performs educational French songs.


As the end of the year approaches (along with the warm weather), we are taking full advantage of outdoor activities in High Park and going out trips.  The second years will make us of their oral French skills as they take a trip to the French bakery, “Ma Maison”. The third years will be learning more about French Canadian Culture as they get ready for their upcoming grad trip to Quebec City. The first years are eager to start practicing and performing their first French play.


Thank you to the students for your hard work and enthusiasm! Thank you as well to Jim, Niamh, Molly, Felix and Parents for your constant support.


Bonne Vacances!



NEWS FROM ELEMENTARY “D” by Aneta Kopinski


An elementary environment has a dual nature: the classroom, equipped with materials representing the integrity and heritage of human knowledge, is complemented by the outside surroundings—our immediate neighbourhood: the local library, the market, the park, the riverbank, and the lakeshore. The work of the child, guided by the specific purpose that inspired him or her to leave the classroom, provides a very valuable experience. If we agree that education itself is a process of adaptation to one’s society, then the "going out" component in Montessori philosophy allows a child to exercise this fundamental right, and the level of readiness marks a child's maturity and developing sense of responsibility.


This year, the students spent many hours exploring different areas of High Park, the banks of the Humber River and the lakeshore. These days, spent away from the confinement of school usually bring lots of excitement, discoveries, observations and memorable experiences. One of the psychological characteristics common to elementary children is the herding instinct. By definition, they move in clusters, they follow the same trends, read the same books and, by the same token, truly suffer if not accepted by the group. These shared experiences in the world outside the classroom have an invaluable ability to strengthen friendships and the children’s sense of belonging.    


Another aspect of these seemingly simple outings is the opportunity that only an elementary child can appreciate. The plethora of "stuff" available to be picked up, all the specimens (rocks, sticks, fungi, etc.) collected along the way, provide the children with their own material for exploration and learning with a lot of excitement and priceless emotions that accompany the process of adaptation to their universe of so much of the unknown.


The lower elementary child is also in a phase of her or his development that is on the verge of transformation from being focused on "me" to "we". This year the children participated in several initiatives undertaken and organized by groups of older students in our school. One that later inspired a very important discussion, prepared by the adolescent group, was the "Syrian Lunch." This event, in addition to introducing them to new foods, allowed the students to realize that there are people around the world that are suddenly forced to leave their homes, their countries, and settle in remote and unfamiliar parts of the world. The students also became aware of the fortunate fact that there are countries like Canada where there are people that are willing to accept refugees, and offer a new home and other basic support.


This particular experience also strengthened the children’s appreciation of our Canadian quality of life, and the peaceful coexistence of different cultures and religions and commonly practiced respect for ethnic differences.


In early fall, the students took part in a Terry Fox run, contributing hundreds of dollars to the Terry Fox Foundation. Later in the year, a food drive initiated by the upper elementary students brought yet another realization of the fact that there are other children and families who are less fortunate and can benefit from support. During the course of the school year, several groups of students also organized fundraisers dedicated to endangered animals. The students’ devotion and compassion in organizing all of these philanthropic events has brought us all warm feelings and trust in the enduring compassion of our society.


I am fully convinced that the students transitioning from our class this year will cultivate these human qualities in their future, in upper elementary and beyond. Willow, Kaitlyn, Julian, Thomas, Elliot, Clara, Sophie, Truman, Mia, Jessica, Liam and Zoe: It was a privilege and honour to assist you in your daily work, and to watch you mature into beautiful human beings during the past three years.


A special thank you needs to be extended to all who supported the students during this school year.


Thank you, Elizabeth, for all your efforts and devotion.


I wish you all a great summer vacation!



NEWS FROM THE ADOLESCENT PROGRAM – by Nick Psarrologos and Teresa Melville


It has truly been an amazing year and as this school year comes to a close, we look back at it with fond memories.  Students from the Adolescent Program began the year with an exciting three-day trip to Camp Muskoka.  Students were submerged in a beautiful, natural forest setting where they experienced numerous hands-on, educational and recreational activities, such as rock climbing on an actual rock face, and an 18-element high-ropes challenge course that culminated in a ride down the longest zip-line in Ontario!


The students of the Adolescent program have worked very hard all year long on a variety of projects, and have proudly produced creative work in all disciplines.  In Language, students continued to develop their understanding of how language is used to express their opinions and feelings, and to support their opinions with research and sound arguments.  They have also participated in formal debates and have studied different forms of media.  This year, the adolescents also studied several classic books including October Sky, Animal Farm and Run.


In Science, students performed a variety of experiments and worked on several projects. Students began the year learning about Interactions in the Environment, focusing on the interactions of different organisms and their relationship with those ecosystems. From this students investigated different global environments under threat and designed strategies for restoring different ecosystems. Students completed a unit on Form and Function, using structural elements to design their own buildings! Our chemistry unit focused on Pure Substances and Mixtures where students investigated the properties of different mixtures and developed their own procedural experiments on separating all elements of a complex mixture


In Dramatic Arts, students honed their acting skills, and successfully produced and performed a series of one-act plays for the school titled A Little Time for Us.  With the help of Russell Leon, our music teacher, students tirelessly worked on a musical performance which they will share at The Festival of Lights. Way to go class! We would like to thank Russell for all his help.


In Humanities, students studied a variety of moments in Canadian history and the connections between local, national and global events. Students investigated a historical figure that they selected, completing a biography and presentation where they personified the individual. In geography students investigated the human environment of our city, planning and taking part in various outing to neighbourhoods in the Toronto Studies. Students completed a study of the variety of land uses while designing their own settlements using skills in urban planning.


This year, students also participated in a variety of real-world, hands-on, meaningful work opportunities.  The adolescents once again opened their micro-economy business, the Café Anglais, with much success.  Students also had their first harvest of honey from their very own apiary and collected over 80 pounds of honey!  Additionally students worked with Susan Hedley to create their very own labels for their honey jars.  You can purchase some tasty honey at the Café Anglais. In June, for the third year in a row, the adolescents will once again stay and work for 3 days at Plan B Organic farm where they will learn rural, organic farming techniques and participate meaningfully in farm work. 


Students will end this amazing year with an unforgettable trip to Montreal, Quebec.  The adolescents have eagerly planned their trip and are prepared for an experience of a lifetime!


The adolescents would like to thank everyone who has helped make this year a very special one including; Biljana our French teacher, Adam our Physical Education teacher, Felix and Molly, and all the other staff and students who supported the adolescents throughout the year.  We also like to congratulate this year’s graduates; Amelia, Alex, Brian, Jordan, Maaham, Evan, Nicholas, Owen, Tipelo, Emily, Roman, Ella, Zoya, and Madelyn for having a very successful year at Humberside’s Adolescent program and we wish them all the best in high school and beyond.  Keep in touch!


Have a great summer, and see you in September!




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