First Tantrum

Oliver, like all children, regularly exhibits dismay when things don’t go his way. In the past, this has always appeared as a bout of sad tears. Often he would hug us even while being upset that we were denying him what he wanted. Today, however, is different. When Oliver brought a book over to Sarah, hoping she would read it to him, she said, “Oh, smells like you need a diaper change. Let’s go change your diaper!” At this point, Oliver’s face turned red and he literally hurled himself on the floor, spinning in a circle, kicking his legs, and slamming his fists on the floor. His movements were so dramatic that he actually slid on his belly—like a maniacal crab—from the dining room into the kitchen.

His first temper tantrum.

(It was pretty adorable.)

Last Days of School

Big transitions are afoot. Today is the last day of school for Griffin and Maggie at Cornerstone, and it is Andrew’s last work day at SPA. Not only are we all transitioning into summer mode, but Griffin and Maggie will be moving into new classrooms with new teachers next year. While this sounds entirely normal to those of us who attended regular schools, in the Montessori model, students work with the same teacher for three years.

Griffin has been in the same classroom since first grade, beginning as a neophyte being mentored by older students and ending, this year, as one of the third-grade leaders. Although Maggie first enrolled this year as a kindergartner, she was part of the top cohort in her classroom, working with younger pre-k students. In the fall, both of them, as fourth- and first-graders, will be entering a new world where they will grow for the next three years.

Maggie has been very excited about the transition, eagerly looking forward to her “Fly Up!” ceremony and the dance her class has been practicing. Griffin has more mixed feelings, leading to some conversations about the term “bittersweet.” He’s excited to continue learning and doing new work (in Montessori parlance), but he loved his teacher and will miss his many younger friends that he’s leaving behind.

Close Reading

While reading the chapter on the battle of Helm’s Deep in the Lord of the Rings last night, Maggie exclaimed, “Whoa! The walls are 20 feet tall!”

“I know! That’s almost as tall as our house,” I replied, thrilled at her level of engagement.

“Yeah. . . . Did you know that dogs eat their own poop? And rabbits do too?”