WMS is a source of support and education for parents, as well as students. We believe that educating children requires partnership and trust among teachers, administrators and parents. With that in mind, we offer a variety of parent education opportunities throughout the year, including WMS’s program offerings, as well as discussion and education about other relevant and timely parenting topics. All parent education opportunities are open to the public, so you are welcome to bring a friend or spread the word.
Everyone Welcome! Bring a lawn chair!
Parenting Unplugged is a casual-yet-informative, supportive-yet-fun way to gather with fellow WMS parents and dish on the ups and downs of parenting. We all know parenting can be as stressful as it is joyful, as challenging as it is rewarding. Whether our children are in YCC or Middle School, we parents need all the help we can get. It truly does take a village. Fortunately for us at WMS, we have one!
Parenting Unplugged is a safe place to gather, unwind and talk. Whether you come weekly or just once in a while, whether you speak up, or just listen, there is always much to gain. We also laugh a lot! Last year, the topics covered included everything from device time to discipline, from instilling values in our children to better communication strategies to adjusting to the new realities of the coronavirus.
“Parenting, Unplugged” will be facilitated by WMS mom and Martha Beck certified life coach, Tal Fagin. As a coach, Tal works with clients one-on-one and in group settings, helping others to pin-point and solve problems, and to devise and implement simple, time-tested strategies that help people live fuller, freer, more balanced and joyful lives.
PARENT BACK TO SCHOOL NIGHT
THURSDAY, 9.14.20 AT 7 PM
Back to School Night is an opportunity to hear from Carney O’Brien, Head of School and Coco Sellman, WMS Board Chair, and then to meet your child’s teachers and to hear specific plans for their upcoming year. This year, we will begin with a webinar style Zoom for all parents to attend, and after a short welcome, you will leave that meeting and enter your classroom zooms.
PARENT EDUCATION: MONTESSORI 101
THURSDAY, 9.24.20 AT 7:30 PM
Maybe you’re new to WMS or maybe you’ve been here for a few years. Either way, are you curious about the purpose of practical life? Do you wonder what sensitive periods are or why classes are mixed ages? Join us for a brief but comprehensive explanation of both the basics principles and the value of Montessori Education.
DISTANCE LEARNING INFORMATION NIGHT
THURSDAY, 10.1.20 AT 7 PM
In the event that we’ll need to pivot to Distance Learning as either a whole school, or a cohort, teachers will share their plans with you. As well, they will give you ways to help your child transition to DL smoothly.
LOWER ELEMENTARY EXPLAINED
WEDNESDAY, 10.7.20 AT 7:30 PM
Dr. Montessori understood that children have distinct traits and planes of development. Her methodology and curriculum are based on the observation of these ages and stages. The Elementary is considered the Second Plane of Development. This evening is designed to explain how the Elementary curriculum responds to the innate needs and tendencies of children this age. Bring your questions for discussion following the presentation.
MONTESSORI EDUCATION, SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL LEARNING (SEL), AND EXECUTIVE SKILLS DEVELOPMENT
WEDNESDAY, 10.14.20 AT 7:30 PM
Some of the most important skills our children develop in school are emotional intelligence and executive function. The former helps us effectively navigate our social world and build connection; the latter guides our highest level cognitive thinking to solve problems, move toward our goals, fulfill our responsibilities. Both are essential for a successful life no matter how it’s defined.
In this facilitated discussion, Valerie English Cooper (Leah, ’06 and Julia, ’11) will discuss how the Montessori educational model integrates both SEL and executive skills development at every age level. How this happens within the Washington Montessori Classroom will be described, and parents will be provided with strategies to reinforce SEL and executive function learning at home.
NEW TO MIDDLE SCHOOL PARENT Q&A
THURSDAY, 10.22.20 AT 7 PM
If you are a 6th grade parent or new-to-WMS 7th grade parent, this meeting should be helpful. Our Middle School staff will be able to talk about the adolescent and how our program is designed to meet the needs and tendencies of these budding adults. We’ll discuss the structure of our program, the three-year progression, our social curriculum, and the variety of rites of passage and annual markers that make our program so special. Bring plenty of questions, and we’ll do our best to answer them!
BOOK DISCUSSION LED BY AMY JULIA BECKER, WMS PARENT AND AUTHOR
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2020 AT 8:45 AM
If it’s sunny and relatively warm (above 50 degrees), we will meet in person outside on campus. Please bring a chair. If it’s raining or below 50 degrees, we will gather via Zoom.
Nicholas Carr won a Pulitzer prize for his book, The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains back in 2010. The newly released and updated version came out in March of 2020, and his words are more relevant than ever to us as adults and also as we raise our children in an internet (and now, virtual) age. For parents who are thinking about how to guide and limit children’s internet usage, for parents thinking about how to guide and limit our own internet usage, please join us on October 27 at 8:45 a.m. for a discussion about The Shallows.
In the case of inclement weather, please join us on Zoom.
LOWER SCHOOL INFO NIGHT
TUESDAY, 1.12.21 AT 7 PM
The purpose of Information Nights is to present our approach to teaching at each level and to help you, as parents, feel comfortable as you preview materials and learn about your child’s next step at WMS. The presentations are made by the teachers. Parents are strongly encouraged to attend the meeting if they have a child moving up, but anyone is welcome and encouraged to come to any and all of the sessions. These are a great way to see what lies ahead for your child, and to understand more about the continuity of a WMS education.