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Welcome to Primary Northeast


Our classroom is a place where your children are invited to experience their world at their own pace, we hope that you will find these brief synopses helpful in gaining insight to the many facets of our classroom.

"Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment."
Melissa Cole & Julie Shearer
929-9325 ex. 34
Melissa Cole Melissa Cole, Primary Guide
B.S. Western Michigan University, Graphic Design
AMI Montessori Primary Certification, Ohio Montessori Training Institute, Cleveland
The Children's House experience (2004- present):
Primary Classroom Support
Primary Guide
Julie Shearer Julie Shearer, Primary Guide
B.S.W. Ferris State University, Social Work
AMI Montessori Primary Certification, Ohio Montessori Training Institute, Cleveland
The Children's House experience (2001- present):
Primary Classroom Support
Primary Classroom Guide

December 19, 2017

Wishing you all a magical holiday season and a glorious New Year. We are grateful for this time together and are looking forward to 2018. See you next year.

December 7, 2017

We enjoyed fresh roasted beets and fresh steamed carrots from the last of our harvest from our raised beds. Two children rubbed the beets down with coconut oil then the beets were roasted in our classroom oven. We had these in addition to our pizza lunch and many of the children enjoyed them, there were a few holdouts but we will keep trying new items next year in the garden.

Everyone is waiting for snow! The children have been asking repeatedly, "When is it going to snow"? We have been talking about the weather and the temperatures that are needed for snow. When ice crystals form it is a type of condensation and when the snowflakes fall it's called precipitation. This has led to questions about when the season of winter begins and it is fun to hear the reasons that the children have as to when it is truly winter.

As I’m sure you can imagine our classroom is filled with excitement along with the sounds of the season. We have been practicing many songs in anticipation of our all school holiday sing. The primary children will be singing Jingle Bells (all three verses) and Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah specifically. Many of you have asked what other songs we are practicing so I have listed them below along with the words to one you might not be familiar with. Happy singing!

Silent Night, Up on a housetop, Rudolph, Fire’s burning and Build a little snowman.

Build a little snowman round and fat
Find a carrot nose and an old straw hat
Now my little snowman won’t you stay?
Out comes the sun and you melt away

November 16, 2017

Last week even though there was snow, a student found some very tiny snail shells while caring for the patio environment. He so sincerely wanted to take the shells home, but we thought that maybe the snails might still be using their homes. We put them in a container so they could easily be observed and to our amazement, they began to come out of their shells and move about in the warmer temperature of the classroom. Ask your child if they remember why the snails were able to come back to life.

We have begun our preparations for our Harvest feast with the most important aspect being; thankfulness! During our collective group the children are asked what they are most thankful for and the responses are as unique as each of your children. The thankfulness theme will be carried through to the new year in hopes that we can all remember how fortunate we are.

Thank you to those of you who participated in "Shop Your Community Day". It's such a fun way to support our community as well as getting a jump start on holiday shopping. We received a lot of wonderful books from our wish basket at Horizon Books and are looking forward to sharing them with the children.

November 2, 2017

It was wonderful to see all of you during conferences. It is always so nice to have the time to slow down and chat with you all about the amazing things your child is doing. It is an important part of how we can work as a team to help guide them in finding their full potential. Thank you for sharing this time with us and know we welcome your input anytime.

Thanksgiving is fast approaching. We have been talking about this unique American holiday and what it really means to be thankful. We have also begun planning for our harvest feast and there are lots of ideas about what we should prepare for the occasion. More information about this celebration will be coming in the next couple of weeks.

Pumpkin fun day was a blast! We had pumpkin pancakes with a sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar and fresh fall apples for our snack. We roasted pumpkin seeds in the oven, made masks, colored pictures, sang our Halloween songs and talked about our costumes. I think the poor arachnids have gotten a bad reputation (through no fault of their own) as we made spider hats and spider webs. The huge snowflakes falling on the playground added to the festive mood.

Just a reminder to send plenty of warm options for outside activities, Winter is on its way!

October 19, 2017

Two of the big topics of the season are apples and the changing colors of the leaves. In small groups we share stories about these two amazing traits of our fall season. We have learned that leaves have different colors inside them and when the leaves are producing chlorophyll the green covers up the other colors inside of the leaf. Apples begin as a flower and need to be cross pollinated with pollen from a different apple tree in order to bare fruit. We will be making applesauce later this week in our classroom.

The firemen from the long lake department visited the primary wing and shared with us what to do in case of a fire in our home. Every family should have a planned meeting place outside of the home in case of a fire. The children were able to hear the noise that the breathing tanks make and see what all the gear looks like on the firemen.

Halloween is fast approaching and the children have been very excited to share what their costumes might be this year. We have been learning a number of songs and poems about this festive holiday so be sure to ask your child to share them with you. Here's one to get you started.

There was an old witch
Believe it if you can
She tapped on the window
And she ran, ran, ran
She ran helter skelter
With her toes in the air
Cornstalks flying
From the old witches hair
Swish went the broomstick
Meow went the cat
Plop went the hop toad
Sitting on her hat
Wee chuckle aye
What fun
What fun
Halloween night

When the witches run

October 5, 2017

Local singer, Miriam Pico, came to entertain us all in the barn last Friday. She sang original music ranging from some very sweet children’s songs to a lovely song in Spanish about her Grandparents. She even rocked out I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor! Needless to say the children were all a-movin-and-a-groovin.

A few weeks ago Taylor took a cruise to and around Alaska and returned with so many amazing pictures and stories. The children have been enjoying hearing the tales and reading many of the wonderful books she brought back. Taylor even brought back sand from a glacier to and to our growing collection.

Did you know…
The state capital of Juneau has not roads leading in or out and can only be reached by air or water?
Tidewater glaciers reach from the mountains down to the ocean and when ice breaks off making icebergs, it’s called calving?
Polar bears are the world’s largest land carnivore?

Last week our last Monarch emerged over the past weekend, its chrysalis was spotted by the keen eyes of Oliver on a day lilly leaf! We are sure it is happily headed south for the winter. Monarchs lay three hundred eggs and sadly only one percent makes it to the final stage of butterfly. It has been fun following the development of the caterpillars and we look forward to finding even more next year!

September 21, 2017

We have been having lots of fun harvesting vegetables from gardens. Carrots and peas have been the latest to find our taste buds and tummies. The children have made many comments about how wonderful they taste and how crisp they are. Whether or not they are plain or dipped in homemade ranch they all agree it is a delicious treat.

Hopefully you all know that a new child has joined our classroom as an extended day student. It has been eye opening to witness all the amazement from this new child at the amount of independence that is offered in the montessori classroom. This serves as a reminder to us that our children are so fortunate to have this as their first educational experience. 

It was wonderful seeing many of you at our class social. We live in a very busy world and it’s nice to slow down and reconnect with one another every once in a while. We are looking forward to the rest of our school year together.

Partnering with families to
 raise exceptional learners. 

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Room Parent

Rachel Taylor-Franks

Classroom Support

Taylor Vancil

Taylor Vancil


tch_icon.pngThe Children's House - An Independent Montessori School
5363 N Long Lake Rd. | Traverse City, MI | 49685 (p) 231.929.9325 | (f) 231.929.9384 | email: learn@traversechildrenshouse.org