March 2018

Tuesday, March 27th, 2018
Category: Blog, Bumblebee Classroom, Lafayette Campus

Birthday celebrations in early March:

First was Eliza’s 3rd:


Then Jake turned 4:


We also had Naomi and her Mom, Nancy, come in and talk about Chinese New Year and showed us how to make Red Lanterns.  Naomi handed out red envelopes to all the children:

Jake and his Mom, Michelle, came in and made tissue paper flowers with us in Afterschool too!

And the highlight of the month was having our families come to see our Art Gallery:

Kayla works on her self-portrait

Camila works on painting her clay bowl 


We started our study of Frogs in March and learned about different types and Parts of the Frog.  We also had a visit from Lila’s tadpole!


In After-school we built and experienced an exciting volcano eruption!


Yoga and Mindfulness in the classroom…



We made Spring Baskets and decorated “Eggs” with a cool machine that Simone brought in…she demostrated in circle time and in Ladybug classroom.  A special thank you to Simone and her family for donating the Eggs and Coloring Machine:


Many families ask, “What is ‘Sound work’?” Children learn to identify the name of the letter “a” with the sound it makes, /a/ as in “apple”.  Children work in groups, sing songs, play games such as “I Spy” and then work on writing the letter in a sand tray and on paper:


Some classroom moments:

Fine Motor & Scissors activities:

Working (and eating!) with Friends:



Thank you for sharing the happenings in our classroom!

March Madness

Sunday, March 18th, 2018
Category: Blog, Ladybug Classroom, Lafayette Campus

March was very busy for us. A lot of our toddlers turned two this month, including Graham, Luca, Noa, Aiden and Charlize.

The children had fun creating their art masterpieces for the first annual GLMS-Lafayette Art Gallery & Show.

This month the children worked on learning all the different types of vehicles and the beginning sound of each as well as which vehicle belongs in the air, road or sea.

They learned some new sounds “w -William, b-boat, h-helicopter”, and enjoyed matching the objects to the old ones they already knew.

We are also working on sorting and counting from 1-5, trying to recognize the symbol and eventually learning the quantity.

Next month we will be working on bugs, insects and moving into Spring .

Art projects for the Art Show:



working on pincer grip trying to get the straw in the hole



February 2018

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018
Category: Bumblebee Classroom, Lafayette Campus

February is a short but full month!  Lots of celebrations and happenings!  

This month we welcomed Mikayla to our classroom!  Please join us in welcoming her and her family to our school.  Mikayla is four years old and comes to us from a Montessori school in Berkeley.  

We also celebrated three birthdays!  The first was Naomi turning 3:

Next was Miles turning 5:

And finally Angelina turning 5:

We have been growing into our Caterpillar classroom with small group lessons in all our curriculum areas including Spanish.  We will continue using the classroom in March and in April will migrate our first Caterpillars and have more circle times and lessons.

A lesson in Parts of the Fish                   Talking about Africa

We celebrated our 100th day of school by ceremoniously changing the number of days in school to 100 and counting lots of things…100 pennies, 100 pom-poms, stringing 100 beads and more:

We made Groundhog Day crafts and learned that there will be six more weeks of Winter 🙁

Valentine’s Day was a wonderful time to deliver our Valentines to our friends as we decorated our bags the day prior:

Sharing is our favorite event on Wednesdays!  Children have an opportunity to share a page from a favorite book, something from nature or something they made, or they can talk about something.  Children stand up in circle, say their name and show/tell their sharing and then take questions/comments!

Continuing our Botany studies, we are learning about stems, from small flowers to LARGE bamboo:

Photos from After-school:

Painting Projects in After-school:

Outside Time Fun:

Classroom Moments:

Doing the Moveable Alphabet and making words, practicing our reading with Rhyming, Sound-Letter Correspondence, Magic “E” and blending sounds:

Doing an Art Project with the Ladybugs…tracing their bodies:


We heard the story of the Chinese Zodiac animals and learned which animal we were born under (rabbit, dragon, goats, snakes & horses!):

We had our first Earthquake Safety Practice this month!  Children learned to Drop, Cover and Hold and quietly found a table to go safely under until they heard us say, “All Clear”:


Next month we begin our study of Europe, talk about Spring holidays and learn all about the Frog!

Thanks for sharing our classroom happenings!

February fun

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018
Category: Blog, Ladybug Classroom, Lafayette Campus

This month we started our new unit on Transportation.  The children are enjoying matching the vehicles to the cards and sorting the different vehicles by which ones travel on land, in water or in the air.

We’ve also been working on our pouring skills, whole hand transfer and our pincer grasp in Practical Life.

In Language the children are learning the new sounds (L for Luca, H for Helicopter, and B for Baby) and we have also started matching objects to the letters.  We are learning some new songs that tie into our vehicle unit and learning what the traffic lights mean.

We celebrated Valentines Day by passing out our Valentines Day cards to our friends and decorating our bags, it was also William’s birthday and we sang him Happy Birthday during our circle time.  We also visited with the Bumble Bees and got a lesson on Chinese New Year.

The children are also enjoying yoga with Rasika.  She is working with them on meditating at the end to calm themselves down and also some transportation poses such as airplane, boat, and bicycle.

Working on putting the sticks in the hole

Working on the knobless cylinders 

Pouring beans

Whole hand transfer

         Matching the object to the pictures

Giving hugs to comfort our friends

Being silly riding the toy garbage truck

Catching a fish

Practicing our yoga meditating

Practicing our yoga moves: Downward Dog


Working on our table pose during KinderDance

Playing with Kinetic Sand

Making silly faces in the mirror

Spooning beans

Celebrating William’s Birthday

Ladybugs: January 2018

Tuesday, January 30th, 2018
Category: Ladybug Classroom, Lafayette Campus

Welcome back! We hope everyone had a great winter break.

As we start the new year we welcome three new students Lucas, Sydney, and Emi (who has an older brother in the Bumblebee class).

This month we are working on learning about penguins and the letters “n” (noa), “i” (igloo) & “p” (paige). We also have a few children going through potty training and they are doing a great job with very few accidents.

Next month we will be celebrating Valentine’s Day please bring 15 Valentine’s Day cards with just your child’s name in the from section and we will make little bags for everyone to distribute to their friends.

Playing with a puzzle.

Rolling a rug.

Working on a puzzle.

Having a good day.

Jumping with Ms. Kira at Kinder Dance.

Kinder Dance.

Learning parts of the penguin.

Working on the pink tower.

Working on the cylinder blocks.

Matching colors.

Circle time.

Marching with Ms. Kira.

Bumblebees: January 2018

Tuesday, January 16th, 2018
Category: Blog, Bumblebee Classroom

We welcomed two new children and families this month!













Kiele or “Kiki” and Angelina or “Angie” join us from Miss Mireya’s previous school.  Both are four years old and have transitioned easily into our classroom!  Please join us in welcoming them to Bumblebee Classroom!

We celebrated two birthdays…

Camden turned 5 at the end of December! His Mom and two younger sisters joined us for the celebration!









We also celebrated Lila’s 5th birthday!

Here are some scenes from worktime:

We are studying Africa this month.  We are learning about the animals in Africa and the different biomes where these animals live (desert, grasslands, wetlands, mountains).  We are trying on clothing from a region in Africa, reading African stories and making maps of Africa:

Helping each other happens a lot in our classroom, especially with challenging jacket zippers and shoes!

Scenes from worktime:



Scenes from outside time:


Thanks for sharing the happenings in our classroom!

Ladybugs: December 2017

Tuesday, December 26th, 2017
Category: Ladybug Classroom

We are happy to add a new member to our Ladybug team!  Rasika Senanayake has been teaching pre-school for six years and will be providing additional support to the Ladybug team.  In addition, she will be leading the Ladybugs in a morning yoga class (called “Morning Magic”) as well as drumming with the children.

Rasika lives close-by and her 22-month-old son (who currently attends Lamorinda Montessori) will join us in the Fall.  She is completing her AA in Early Childhood Education and starting her Montessori Training.  Below is a short note from her:

I am from the beautiful island of Sri Lanka located in Southeast Asia.  We have been living in the Bay Area for about 14 years and we love this community.  We have two children, a nine-year-old daughter, and a two-year-old son.  I speak three languages and have some experience with sign language.  I used to be an on-stage cultural dancing performer and dancing teacher.  Also, I have experience in the areas of oil painting, cake decorating, yoga, mindfulness meditation, and clothing design.  I love spending time with my family, traveling, dancing, watching movies and cooking for friends and family.  I also love preparing and sharing food for the needy communities in the Bay Area.  I am truly excited to join Growing Light Montessori School and share my experience and love with all the beautiful children and their families.
Thank you very much,


Bumblebees: December 2017

Tuesday, December 26th, 2017
Category: Bumblebee Classroom

Shannon will be coming out of the classroom at 1pm each day to work on her part-time administrative Director duties.  She will remain on-campus and available to teachers and families.

Families have already welcomed Mireya Espejo to the Bumblebee Classroom on December 6th.  Mireya works from 8:30 to 4:30pm providing classroom support throughout the day, nap/rest time and after-care.

Mireya comes to us with over 16 years of teaching experience as a Head Pre-school and TK teacher.  She is passionate about teaching and has been enjoying getting to know the Bumblebee children and families.  She is enrolling in Montessori training classes early next year.


We are also pleased to welcome Roxanna Kopp Smith as a part-time Yoga instructor and Substitute Teacher beginning in January.  As a mother of two teenagers, a life-long practitioner of yoga, and a former Growing Light teacher, Roxanna brings her experience, enthusiasm and open heart to her yoga classes for children.  She has an M.A. in Psychology and certified to teach Hatha, Yin and Kundalini Yoga.  She has just returned to the Bay Area after spending the Fall semester traveling on the West Coast, living on the road and homeschooling her 15-year-old son.  You can read more about Roxanna at

Roxanna will be offering the Bumblebee students a 10-week class that meets once a week on Tuesday mornings for 30 minutes at a cost of $50/child.  Each class will include asana (physical poses), meditation, mantra, and pranayama (breath work).  Each class will be specifically tailored to young children.  Here are just a few of the benefits that children practicing yoga receive: body awareness, reduced anxiousness, mental focus and learning the practice of presence, all of which are important life skills at any age.  Registration forms will be forthcoming in the new year.


The First Few Weeks of School!

Friday, September 15th, 2017
Category: Bumblebee Classroom, Ladybug Classroom, Lafayette Campus

The first few weeks of school have been filled with new routines and new friendships!  In both classrooms, Ladybugs and Bumblebees are busy learning the new works.  We also started KinderDance with our favorite teacher, Kira!  We loved learning to dance and move to Kira’s great music!  One of our favorite dance steps was the “Scottish Walk”!  

Growing Light Lafayette Family Social – August 2017

Tuesday, September 12th, 2017
Category: Lafayette Campus

We were thrilled to gather at our Lafayette campus for the first official Family Social & Potluck to kick off our new school opening! Our families gathered to get to know each other before the first day of school on August 21, 2017. We enjoyed the Taco Bar brought to us by our own Hector and Mari and all the wonderful potluck items the families brought. The best part of the day was the release of thousands of ladybugs! What a great way to start our first school year!!!