Sunday, December 27, 2009
A Welcomed Cup of Tea
I had the wonderful pleasure of visiting The Center School in Plainfield, Vermont last week. The small farm house serves as a single Primary classroom. It was so beautiful to look at that I had to take a couple of photographs to share with the blogging community.
After sitting and observing the children work for a short time, a five year old student approached me and asked if I would like a cup of tea. Stating that I would, she left and returned with a small basket that held a variety of tea bags. I picked the one I wanted and she went on her way to prepare it. The assistant teacher helped by pouring the hot water into a small tea pot that was part of a well assembled tray.
Another item on the tray was a timer. The child set the timer for three minutes and watched the time tick away. When the timer went off, she poured a cup of tea for me and one for herself. She placed my cup on a saucer and put this on a smaller tray.
When she served me my tea she looked at me and said, "May I tell you something?" I said yes and then she continued. "After you finish your first cup of tea, if you want more leave your empty cup up on the saucer. If you do not want more tea, turn your cup upside down on your saucer." She then smiled and walked away.
While I enjoyed my tea, I watched as the assistant helped a child make gingerbread cookies.
I turned my head looking here and there and then I found it. I found the pink tower.
This is what makes the Montessori classroom so wonderful - the consistency of the Montessori materials in all the environments. This provides new children (who may have left another Montessori school due to their parents deciding to move) comfort. They see work that they are familiar with. The adults change and how a room is decorated changes, but the materials remain consistent.
Thank you to The Center School for allowing me to both visit their school and to photograph the work being done there.