Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Pete's Amazing Presentation

First, help! I couldn't find a synonym for 'amazing' that started with 'P' and so had to skip the alliteration. Anybody got anything? Also, sorry you had to wait for this; I'm very busy this week!

Pete was one of only two children from her class of nearly 2 dozen selected to demonstrate Sensorial Montessori activities last night to parents of the Primary (pre-k and k) children. The other child selected was Pete's best friend who is a boy (not her best friend overall, just of her friends who are boys, and not her boyfriend - don't let her hear you call him that! but if in ten years he is actually her boyfriend I think I'll be okay with that) and with whom Pete works really well. Their center got rave reviews. They both did amazing work.

I'm going to brag on Pete's friend first because he's so cool. He started with the binomial and trinomial cubes, which are basically algebra with blocks. The trinomial cube looked very difficult, but he just flew through it! Also, Husbandguy said he saw him do the graduated cylinders wearing a blindfold, and DH was pretty sure he must have been able to see through the blindfold, but Pete says you have to try really hard to peek out the bottom if you want to cheat so we're pretty sure Pete's friend is just that good.

And Pete! Wow! She started with the cylinder cabinet. I'm not going to explain it because it can be difficult to picture, but PSP has an email she can forward you if you're interested and if she thinks it will help you understand. It looked like it was pretty simple, way below Pete's skills, but she started and focused and finished and made us all very proud. Then she got to do more difficult work that I can't remember the name of and some stuff I didn't get to see because I was looking at the other centers and trying to find out what that kid was doing or that kid there (one was doing the addition strip board, which I'd heard of but never seen - he was making 10 in as many ways as he could like he adds to 10 all the time - he was 4! sorry, I'm off track). When I got back, Pete was doing the binomial cube like it was second nature for her. Then her teacher asked her to demonstrate the Pink Tower, one of the symbols of Montessori - maybe The Symbol. It was clearly too easy for Pete. Once she had finished stacking the cubes the right way, she very carefully, starting at the top, turned each cube just slightly and seemingly randomly until the tower had a very precarious and artistic appearance, but it didn't wobble. Then she laid the cubes out in a row from smallest to largest at random angles and made a neat crooked stair step effect. She did this on her own! How do I nurture that?! The last thing Pete and her friend did they did together. I don't know what it was called, but they are a great team!

The best part of the whole thing wasn't that DH and I were proud of Pete (and her friend, by the way) for being so grown up. We were already proud just that she was selected and knew she could do it no problem and were, of course, extra pleased that we were right. The best part was how proud Pete and her friend made their teacher. They were perfect examples of kindergarten Montessori students and they were a reason for their teacher to go home knowing she is doing a good job.

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