Toledo Campus
(419) 866-1931
7115 W. Bancroft
Toledo, OH 43615-3010
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Perrysburg Campus
(419) 874-9385
13587 Roachton Rd.
Perrysburg, OH 43551-1154
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woods

Head of School Lynn Fisher walks on WSM’s wooded trails.

The urge for adventure, exploring outdoors, is one of the joys of childhood. This summer, in addition to the zoo and our 12 amazing Metroparks of the Toledo Area, take your children for a walk on the wild side to one of the more isolated nature preserves in the area. One of my favorites is Irwin Prairie located on West Bancroft Street just west of Irwin Road. A boardwalk winds through the wet woods to Irwin Rd. and then crosses the wet prairie to an isolated observation deck.  There you feel like you are in a remote location. There are no crowds, no thrilling rides, but if you stay very still and listen very carefully a blue damselfly might land nearby or a frog dive into the water.

Traveling farther west and north of Airport Highway, at 10420 Old State Line Rd, west of Eber Rd., Kitty Todd Preserve has one of the highest concentrations of rare species of any nature preserve in the state. Explore the low lying wetlands and sand dunes any day between 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and you may see wild lupine in bloom and glimpse an endangered karner blue butterfly. Have you ever seen an earth star? Before you go, have your school-age children use their Internet savvy to research some of the plants and animals found in the Oak Openings area of northwest Ohio. Or take a side trip to your local library to discover what awaits you.

Travel doesn’t have to be at a great distance to open children’s minds and hearts. What matters is leaving the comfort of the familiar and introducing them to a world apart from their own. Cultivate a sense of wonder in your children by stepping out and into the natural world where their senses will be reawakened and mysteries revealed.

Don’t forget the sunscreen and bug spray!

Lynn Fisher, Head of School

Lynn Fisher, Head of School

How will your children spend their time this summer? Riding bikes? Swimming? Playing with friends? Attending summer camps or classes? Relaxing and reading?

What about screen-time, the amount of time watching TV, playing video games or using mobile devices? We are in an era of accelerating screen-time for children of all ages. Current research shows an average of 7+ hours per day of screen-time for young children and as screen-time increases the amount of sleep-time decreases.

According to The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) the use of media is the leading activity for children and teenagers other than sleeping and there is considerable evidence that a bedroom TV increases the risk for obesity, substance use, and exposure to sexual content. The AAP now recommends limiting screen time for children to 1-2 hours per day and discourages exposure to all screen media for children under age two.

Many child development experts are concerned. When children are physically engaged in a challenging activity, like learning to walk or ride a bike or skate, their brains are stretched; muscles are strengthened; coordination improves. Children’s brains are elastic and grow the most during the first 10 years of life through lots of physical and mental exercise.

Social and emotional development is equally important and is dependent on human interactions. Children learn to read body language and appropriate behavior from experience, trial and error. The less time children interact with peers and nurturing adults, the less time to develop life skills that determine success.

How are your children spending their time this summer? Encourage them to get outside and move, stretch their bodies and minds, develop friendships through play and shared experience, and savor summer with time to relax and rejuvenate. Come to think of it, we could all benefit from more outdoor play.

parent surveyWest Side Montessori is in the process of being re-accredited by the American Montessori Society. This is a title that WSM is very proud to have as one of only five schools Ohio and of 126 schools nationally who have this special recognition!

An important part of the process to retain the accreditation is to offer an anonymous parent survey which allows families to express their opinions about our school, including our strengths and areas of improvement. Every opinion counts!

Please take a few moments to complete the specific campus – Perrysburg or Toledo – by clicking a link below to participate. Complete the general questions and then skip to the program-specific questions that pertain to each of your children.  Your comments are welcome.

Perrysburg Campus Families
https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/PerrysburgCampus

Toledo Campus Families
https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ToledoCampus

If done online, follow the directions to print off the “Thank You” page at the end of the survey, add your name, and return it to school. In doing so, you will earn two free hours of child care for your child!  Your survey will still be submitted anonymously. Paper copies also are available at the front desk or you can complete an online survey using a laptop set up in the lobby.

Thank you for your continued support of West Side Montessori.

Lynn Fisher, Head of School

Lynn Fisher, Head of School

Picture a peaceful nine-year-old child, kind and giving, passionate and joyful, and mostly in control of his or her emotions. Is this some alien species? Or is it possible to nurture peaceful children in our highly competitive, cynical and polarized society?

Research tells us that educating the emotions, teaching self-control, has a wider impact than preventing violence. Look at the widespread anti-bullying programs in place across our country today. And yet, mean spirited, demeaning behavior persists in elementary schools and beyond.

Surround your child with a caring community of adults who model emotional competence. Gently but firmly set the boundaries for your child’s behavior to provide both physical and emotional security. When you lose your temper with your child out of frustration or exhaustion, apologize. Explain your feelings and actions to help your children recognize and accept their own mistakes, to understand that no one is perfect, no one is superior.

Stop calling your children good or bad. A child labeled good is only good in relation to someone else’s being bad. Labeling encourages children to invest in keeping others bad to ensure superiority.It perpetuates a cycle of judgment and blame and discourages cooperation.

Build your child’s self-confidence and empathy by supporting them in moments of personal crisis and demonstrating that helping others is as important as superior grades or winning the game. Each step you demonstrate toward cooperation and compassion is a step toward developing a peaceful child.


First Thursday | Come Experience Montessori

Seeds of Peace
Thursday, March 6, 8:45-9:30 a.m.
Toledo and Perrysburg Campuses

Join us for a lively discussion led by Montessori-certified teachers on planting the seeds of peace within our children at school and at home. Each month features a new topic geared for the parents of children ages 3 through Kindergarten. Free and open to the public.

Fisher_picHow do you nurture a child to become his or her best self? Lovingly, tenderly, slowly, just like in nature. The transformation from baby to adult human being takes a full 24 years from birth to maturity. West Side Montessori capitalizes on the critical early childhood period of development through the tween years with insight and expertise by providing enriched learning opportunities as well as the time and opportunity for children to investigate their world so they develop the confidence to reach for the stars.

While exploring West Side’s 37 acres of woods, meadows, pond and swales tiny children may discover skunk cabbage or feel the velvety leaves of marsh mullein while older children collect and learn the parts of native prairie plants, classify those plants by phylum, study the ecology of the Oak Openings and plant reproduction, and tend their own gardens. By middle school the pond becomes their classroom again when students collect and analyze water samples in preparation for community involvement in our local Maumee River Watershed Watch program.

Our highly-trained and experienced Montessori certified teachers create enticing indoor and outdoor classroom environments full of abundant learning materials where children challenge themselves and ask for more. An atmosphere of shared learning creates a peaceful and purposeful learning community. At each age and stage of growth West Side Montessori students cultivate high level skills and develop creativity and leadership. Each child gains independence as natural curiosity blossoms into a love of learning at West Side.

Montessori students develop a high degree of self-knowledge and grow up to be creative problem solvers and leaders who face the challenges of the future with grace, confidence, and tenacity.

Come and see for yourself how your child can grow with Montessori.

Warm regards,

Lynn Fisher
Head of School