Welcome To the 2001 AMC Newsletter
Summer Supplement Page

Revised March 2009

AMC Summer Supplement 2001 Part I


all rights reserved

American Montessori Consulting
P.O. Box 5062
Rossmoor, CA 90720
Heidi Anne Spietz, Editor
ISSN 1084-743X
Copyright 2001-2008
All rights reserved

Click below to visit our AMC Montessori Bookstore

To Visit Our New Primary Montessori Resource Section

Visit The AMC Montessori Online Resource Directory today to find lesson planning resources. You'll find art, crafts, practical life, manipulatives, books, magazines, cursive writing, music, science, social science, math, classroom accessories, multicultural resources, furniture, foreign language, puppets, puzzles, teacher training, learning programs, and much, much more. These companies offer some terrific educational gifts as well.

Contents in Part I of this newsletter include:

Creative Lesson Planning - Make Your Own Multicultural Lessons I
Chinaberry, Inc. - Books and Other Treasures for the Whole Family
Coaching for Learning-SuccessTM -A Learning Style Model of Education

Creative Lesson Planning - Make Your Own Multicultural Lessons I

Use the ideas introduced throughout this newsletter as a template for a complete study of two or three countries. The lesson ideas in this newsletter lend themselves to compare and contrast hands-on lessons, involving art, music, language, social studies and more. In Part I of this newsletter, we will focus on the study of two Asian countries. You will discover just how easy it can be to include interdisciplinary multicultural lesson plans into your existing curriculum. Part II of this newsletter contains additional ideas, plans and resources. To receive complete multicultural lesson planning ideas, be sure to read AMC Summer Supplement 2001 Part II Part II as well.

Invite your students to learn about Korea, Japan and China through meaningful art, history, music, social studies, science lesson planning. The links below will help you to formulate and organize your lessons so that you can provide your students with a truly meaningful multicultural odyssey.

If you are looking for some interesting ways to educate your students about Japan and Japanese culture your first stop should be to The Outlook Elementary School - Japan Project. You'll soon agree that this site a good starting point.

This site contains multiple hands on activities that can easily be adapted to fit a Montessori setting. For example, The Doll Festival craft project and Tea Ceremony, lessons can both be adjusted by the Montessori teacher to introduce students to Japanese culture.

All teachers will appreciate the extensive selection of resources by clicking on the Links page. Haiku, Kokeshi Dolls, National Anthem of Japan, What is a Japanese Family Crest? and Writing Japanese Stories are just some of the resource material that can be quickly located at this website.

Visit Expressions used in Japanese Letters and Learn the Japanese Language for additional language and writing lesson planning activities.

Practical life exercises and cultural appreciation lessons can be enhanced by students learning how to create some Japanese meals. Yasuko-san's Home Cooking offers a nice selection of various Japanese dishes. To introduce cooking into your curriculum, using the Montessori method, visit The AMC Resource Directory/Cooking With Children Can Be Easy/. This complete system for single portion recipes is already being used in over 1,100 classroom/programs in more than 40 states and 10 foreign countries.

Visit KIDS WEB JAPN: Culture Corner for answers to your questions about musical instruments, the tea ceremony, and religion in Japan.

Young students who have been working with templates and learning the geometric shapes will receive additional practice by making the Origami Crane and Yakko. Complete instructions and examples are available at Origami Theme Page Visit Montessori for the 21st Century for additional origami lesson planning ideas. You will also find the link for the Japanese Birds Origami activity.

Montessorians and others use an interdisciplinary approach when presenting lessons about Japan and Japanese culture. Children's Day, A Japanese Holiday: A Multicultural Unit that Introduces Primary Students to the Customs and and Traditions of Japan accomplishes this through an integrated study involving literature, writing, social studies, science, health/nutrition, art, math and more.

Patricia Berg Ward has compiled an excellent unit on presenting art to children. At Teaching Primary Children about Japan through Art you will learn how to infuse Japanese art into existing curricula. ARTSEDGE:You Too Can Haiku applies integrated lesson planning for children in the six to nine year old age range.

Creating a prepared environment with the help of Creative Process. Visit Creative Process - Japan for their complete selection. See Japan & Japanese Culture Posters, Prints, Maps & Charts.

To learn more about Montessori schooling in Japan please visit The Montessori School of Japan

Visit Chinese Resources and peruse through this comprehensive guide to finding the lesson information you will need for a Chinese unit study. Learn more about calligraphy by visiting Appreciation of Chinese Calligraphy

The Your Name in Chinese, Korean, Japanese, etc. will be of interest to many students. At this site, you will find a considerable amount of links to help you with other types of multicultural lesson planning as well.

School and home educators working with those in the K - 18 age range will want to visit and Visual Manna. Sharon Jeffus authored Teaching Geography Through Art which includes an art history lesson about China.

Give your students a booklist of suggested reading, so that they can spend some independent time learning more about the cultures and countries being presented. You can cull some interesting titles from these next three websites. The Seattle Public Library offers an online booklist of multicultural books for children. Locate other booklists by stopping Children's Book List Exploring East Asia through Stories. You'll find a wide array of books covering all aspects of Asian culture.

Visit Creative Process - China for a complete selection of China and Chinese Culture Posters, Prints, Maps & Charts.

Many parents and teachers feel that children need to be fluent in more than one language. For those wanting to introduce the Chinese language to their children, Professor Toto's offerings might just be the solution. Recently, Tina Lee, public school educator, college supervisor of student teachers, parent of two adult children and grandparent of a 27 month old shared the following:

I was privileged to field test the kit with my English speaking Chinese granddaughter. After viewing a segment in Mandarin, then replaying that same portion in English, she viewed both with quiet, receptive attention. The Parent's Guide emphasizes that the child should watch both DVD's first before moving to the activity books or audio CD. The parent guide emphasizes that viewing in English should be limited and "as soon as your child becomes familiarized with the story, he or she should move on to the target language."

As an educator, I find that the suggestions on how to implement the program for the recommended short spurt lessons follow the best practices for second language acquisition. The approach is pedagogically sound - immersing the child in hearing, understanding, and internalizing the second language in a natural way before the child is expected to speak it.

To assist in lesson planning, the full script of Professor Toto in Chinese is printed in English, simplified Chinese characters, and also Pin-Yin (Western phonetic Chinese). The script is intended to closely match the culture and today's common usage. Rather than a literal word-for-word translation, the emphasis is on an eventual intuitive understanding for the word meanings.

To read the complete review please visit Montessori for the 21st Century - Adventures in Chinese for Children.

Since music is such an integral part to the Asian culture you will also want to bookmark Asian Musical Instruments. A set of granite blocks by LP, which is simply the modern version of the ancient Chinese temple blocks, is available from the AMC Resource Directory/THE Port Washington MUSIC HOUSE. You'll find Caribbean calypso drums, some Latin percussion, African and Indian instruments as well through this music source.

Chinese Holidays offers educators an overview of the major Chinese holidays and festivals. As we know, active learning occurs through hands on activities. By visiting Chinese Food Index your child will be able to learn about the different types of Chinese food, basic differences from Western food and locate many authentic recipes. Visit Chinese Holidays to discover additional lesson resources. You will even find some suggestions for celebrating a multicultural Thanksgiving.

Karen Eini shared the following with me back in 2001: "Friends and Flags, is an Internet based, dynamic exchange which celebrates humanity, cultural diversity, equal learning opportunities, caring and the joy of giving. The project provides educators with a dynamic framework for cross-cultural communication. Participating schools are placed , according to grade, in mailing circles comprised of 6 classrooms, where each represents different country.

Friends and Flags also promotes tangibility, authenticity and equal opportunity. Participants that do not have extensive computer access, have been able to play an equal and active role in this collaborative effort. Each partner class is responsible for the preparation of 6 Friends Packs, one for each country member in their circle of 6. These packages are sent by traditional post and are a tangible and authentic reflection of the creativity, hard work, caring and generosity of the learners in each nation. In addition to cultural collectible items such as flags, pictures, postcards, popular brands of candies, popular cartoons, comics and stickers the package contains a student researched, written, and illustrated country guide book. The guide book, whether it be hand written, a word document or powerpoint, reflects personal impressions of the student's cultural environments, interests, art work, concerns, achievements and much, much more.

Participants also engage in the use of a variety technologies such as email, email lists, discussion boards, digital photography, chatrooms, audio technology. The Friends and Flags website is an integral part of the project and provides all members with a place for sharing information for all members interactive websites."

For information on how your school can participate in this project please visit The Friends and Flags Website Unfortunately, the website is currently down.

We all know that the Montessori method is used in every continent. Discover Montessori in China by visiting The Children's House

To receive complete multicultural lesson planning ideas, be sure to read AMC Summer Supplement 2001 Part II by Part II clicking here.

Visit Cantemos to purchase a Peruvian or Chilean rainstick, zampona (Peruvian pan flute) or Chackchas (goat hoof instrument). While at Cantemos, you'll also want to look at the marvelous supplies of French and Supplies learning aids. Georgette Baker is a multicultural performer, speaks five languages and plays the guitar, cuatro and charango. Georgette has traveled extensively to many exotic places and brings these experiences to life through stories and songs that children enjoy. These songs and stories are available in the form of CDs, books and cassettes She enjoys performing and sharing her knowledge. Cantemos is based in Southern California, and those interested in knowing more about her performances should call (800)393-1336 for additional information.

Georgette's son, Michael Mastorakis is following in his mother's footsteps. This young author recently wrote a delightful account of his journey to the Galapagos Islands. The book. We're Off...to the Galapagos is a perfect addition to any school and/or homeschooling library. This is one book that is sure to be frequently borrowed by students seeking to read an exciting, true life adventure. The reader learns interesting facts about the Galapagos Islands while vicariously experiencing life on the Galapagos Islands through the pictures and interesting text. Teachers can also use the book to augment multicultural social studies presentations and reinforce bilingual presentations in Spanish/English.

Michael's accomplishments have not gone unnoticed. He won first place in the 2001 Latino Literary Hall of Fame for Best Educational Children's Book in English and was featured in a recent article appearing in the Los Angeles Times. Michael's book , We're Off...To the Galagapos is available from the AMC Resource Directory/Cantemos..

Have you visited our resource directory?

Use this summer to plan some exciting lessons for your students. The Garden Game is just one of many exciting learning tools that The AMC Resource Directory/Ampersand Press has to offer. This inspiring board game is about gardening for food and fun. Players feed the soil, plant seeds, nurture the plants, have harvest festivals, and help each other through natural disasters.

Priority Montessori Materials offers a comprehensive list of hands-on science materials. Physical and life sciences are represented. The company has been featured in the 1995, 1997 and 1999 editions of *Montessori Resources*.

This company also sells nomenclature sets, underwater land forms, trays, nut matching, shell matching and rock matching exercises, mineral sets, land form cabinets, five senses exercises(NEW), the water cycle (NEW) and more. These fine materials are ideal for both home and school use. Visit the AMC Resource Directory/Priority Montessori Materials to learn more about the product line.

Schoolmasters Science offers over 2,000 items for the lab, school and home. School educators will be impressed with the fine selection of CD-ROMS in the areas of astronomy & space, biology, and earth science. The Science Sleuths CD-ROMS allow students to act as investigators. Students are given the opportunity to develop problem solving skills by becoming involved in collecting information, developing and testing hypotheses and reaching conclusions. To learn more about the extensive product line click here.

HANDS-ON EQUATIONS® is an exciting visual and kinesthetic teaching system for introducing algebraic concepts to students in grades 3 to 9. Developed by Dr. Henry Borenson, this patented teaching system enables young children, as early as 3rd grade, to gain access to algebraic concepts normally presented in the 7th, 8th, or even 9th grades. Visit the AMC Resource/HANDS-ON EQUATIONS® website for further information about this wonderful hands on math tool.

LORD Company is well known for product design and durability. The company manufactures children's furniture and educational equipment, designed to maximize self-help skills for infants, toddlers, pre-school and elementary-aged children.

The company is also introducing an "Easy Reading" series of books that can be downloaded for FREE from their website. To learn more about the product line click here.

The summer months offer an ideal opportunity to prepare lesson plans for the upcoming fall/winter holiday season. You can also add music to your summer camp experiences, family outings and summer curriculum.


The following is from Ann Ruethling, founder of Chinaberry, Inc.
"When Chinaberry began over 19 years ago, I personally handled each order with my 2-year-old daughter Elizabeth's help. Elizabeth was my first child, and it's because of her that Chinaberry, Inc. came to be. Now if you are a parent, you know that NOTHING is good enough for your first child! In my case, I was disturbed by the lack of caring and respect expressed in many of the children's books we found at the library, not to mention the sexism and violence. I began to search out books for Elizabeth that were positive and uplifting by subscribing to numerous children's literature publications and by scouting out as many libraries as I could. I started keeping notes on index cards about the books I liked and at what age I wanted to introduce Elizabeth to each book. I felt that if all parents could just feed all those wonderful books into the hearts and minds of their children, the world would have to become a better place. Thus, Chinaberry was conceived - at first as a free service, and then as a catalog business to make it easier for parents to buy the books I was telling them about.

Today we sell more than one million books annually through our mail order catalog and our Chinaberry Website. On our site, you will find ideas for reading to young children, information on our extraordinarily successful book fairs, books and other treasures for "Emerging Minds," and much more. My vision is that Chinaberry remains as intimate and focused as those days when I packed a few orders on the kitchen table with my toddler."

To learn more about Chinaberry, Inc. please visit the AMC Resource Directory/Chinaberry,Inc..

Coaching for Learning-SuccessTM

The following is from Coaching for Learning-SuccessTM

"Philosophy of the Learning-SuccessTM - Model of Education
What is the number one ingredient that leads to success of any kind? It is belief - what a person believes about himself or herself. Every day we are building evidence that supports our beliefs about ourselves. If the evidence shows that we're not so great, not doing too well, not very smart, can't get it right, then we learn to believe that we are limited in what we can do. But if we can see evidence of our own intelligence, creativity, and accomplishments, and the appreciation from others, we learn to believe that we are capable and that the possibilities are unlimited.

How can we help our children believe in themselves and in unlimited possibilities? We can start by helping them to build evidence for their unique characteristics, their natural abilities, the genius inside each one of them. A child who is forced to learn in ways that don't work for him is given evidence on a daily basis of his inadequacy. A child whose natural talents and interests are nurtured and encouraged, and who is helped to discover the many aspects of her learning style and all the ways she CAN learn, is given evidence of her value and competence.

We teach our children to believe in themselves when we believe in them. Allowing each person's star to shine - that is what Coaching for Learning-SuccessTM is all about.

The Learning-SuccessTM Model:
Identifies a student's learning styles
Respects a student's readiness for learning
Acknowledges a student's natural gifts and abilities
Treats the student as a partner in the learning process
Encourages students to explore their life missions

This model applies the C.A.R.E.S principles:
C - Celebrate each child's uniqueness
A - Accept your role as a teacher and coach
R - Respond rather than react
E. - Expand your view of how and where learning takes place
S - Stop supporting bell curve and school definitions of students

This model encourages staying F.I.T.T.:
F - Focus on solutions
I. - Identify goals
T. Track successes (instead of failures)
T. Take the pressure off (back off when learning isn't happening - it's probably not the right time)"

Learn more about Coaching for Learning-SuccessTM by clicking here.

American Montessori Consulting
P.O. Box 5062
Rossmoor, CA 90720

Heidi Anne Spietz, Editor
The AMC Montessori Newsletter
Summer Supplement 2001-2009
all rights reserved
Copyright c2001-2009

For general questions about American Montessori Consulting
contact AMC via e-mail

American Montessori Consulting