Weekly Update 3/28/19

Message from the Head of School

Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed. ~Maria Montessori 

Dear Parents,
Happy Spring! Thanks to all of you who have let us know about your decision for next year. If you haven’t been able to do so yet, please take a moment to let us know. It drives all of our admission decisions and planning for the year to come. Thank you in advance, and if there’s anything we can help with, please reach out!
I love the quote above. To me it captures the essence of the Montessori difference, and the counter-intuitive approach that it demands on the part of the adults in the child’s life. I also like to remember what it implies, that we SHOULD help a child with a task at which he feels he needs help, while leaving as much room for them to grow into their new capabilities. It’s a delicate balance to strike, not just with children but with all the people in our lives.
Speaking of tasks we need help with, I hope you’ll all be able to come out to our Spring Yard Clean Up this Sunday!  See all the details and RSVP link below. Many hands make light work, as the saying goes, and it will be a great chance to spend some time together!  Thank you!

God bless,

Sean P. Garvey
Head of School
Renaissance Montessori School

Messages from the Environments


The children in the YCC have been enjoying a rich experience of Practical Life and Language throughout the year, but recently I’ve noticed an explosion of language!! Daily we share stories, sing songs, and play little games, exposing them to spoken language. Maria Montessori suggested playing lots of language games with children, after they have normalized in the classroom through practical life, and it is spot on what I am seeing, which is so fun! There is an increase interest in classified objects and cards, which introduce children to the names of things out in the world (this week we have had fun with breeds of dogs), sound games help the children hear that words are made up of individual sounds and we isolate those sounds for children to hear clearly. A new game that we are introducing is the command game, which makes a game out of following instructions! (Now that is sneaky, isn’t it!) Better yet, I hear children clearly expressing themselves when they are upset, or need to work without being interrupted, and using such lovely manners at the community snack table! Next Monday at Montessori Mondays at 8:30 we will explore how this exposure to rich spoken language lays the foundation for a joyful pathway to reading. Open to all parents.


With the beginning of Lent, we have brought out the City of Jerusalem again. This is a beautiful topographical map of the city of Jerusalem with removable landmarks and walls. When the child is introduced to this, he works with it, putting the pieces together, and exploring the layout of the city, all while hearing the story of the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus. At this age, whenever we tell the child the story of the crucifixion and death of Jesus, we always also remember His resurrection. The young child feels these things so deeply, we cannot leave him hanging without the fulfillment and hope of the resurrection.


In Elementary, we are moving right along with our spring production, “Harlequin.”  The children decided that they wanted to cast the play themselves, which took longer than it might have if the staff had done it, but was a great opportunity to learn about how challenging it is to make - and live with! - these decisions.  We had casting guidelines from Mr. Jones about the roles, and we followed them and carefully considered, as a community, how to begin to put together a cohesive cast.

We have a piano, but a few of the keys no longer work.  Is there any chance anyone has a lead on getting a working, tuned piano (or full-sized electronic keyboard) for RMS?  Please let us know if you might be able to help!


The results of our drawing workshop with Mr. Jared Seff are amazing. After an introductory talk, Mr. Jeff had each person choose a master portrait to copy. He then gave us time to attempt to copy it ourselves. Then he demonstrated several techniques. The second afternoon we set up a second attempt after having received instruction. The transformation was remarkable. It was very empowering and we were encouraged to continue using these new techniques! Here is an example of one of the masterpieces chosen and a before instruction and after instruction attempt at copying.


RMS Community Yard Clean Up Day Sunday!

Get your volunteer hours in!

Join us for a Yard Party on Sunday afternoon, March 31 from 2:30-4:30. Bring the kids and your yard tools---we have lots of jobs for all ages that can be done to beautify our property.  This is a great way to earn Volunteer Hours, and it will be fun to get our families together to take care of this amazing property.  Adult and kid beverages provided.  

We will especially need rakes, clippers and sheers, trimmers for bushes, edging shovels, wheel barrow and a chain saw and power washer.


Spring Parent-Teacher Conferences

Parent-Teacher conferences occur twice a year; once in the fall and once in the spring. The conferences provide parents with one-on-one time with the teacher, to share our joint observations of the child, so we can best acknowledge who they are and what they need next. 

Use the links below to schedule a conference. Please be aware that because of the HVAC work going on in the building during conferences, the Parent Lounge and other indoor spaces are not available for children not participating in a conference. Thank you in advance for your prompt arrival.

Toddler - Coming soon.

Parents Guild Farm Brew Live Event

We invite you to join other RMS parents (and kids if you would like) at 2 Silos/Farm Brew Live in Manassas in the afternoon on May 19. (Exact times TBD.) Come enjoy the afternoon with us--Two Silos features an outdoor fireplace, a Peterson's ice cream truck with specialty ice cream and drinks, a playground, corn hole, fire pits and several different food options. They do ask that you do not bring in outside food and children must be with their parents the entire time. We will try to meet in the area near the fireplace. Check it out:  http://farmbrewlive.com 

Upcoming Events

  • 3/31/19 - RMS Grounds Clean Up 2:30 - 4:30 PM

  • 4/1/19 - Montessori Monday 8:30 AM

  • 4/2/19 - First Communion Meditation 6:30 PM

  • 4/9/19 - First Communion Meditation 6:30 PM

  • 4/10/19 - Parents Guild Meeting 8:30 AM

  • 4/15/19 - NO SCHOOL - Teacher Work Day

  • 4/16/19 - NO SCHOOL - Parent-Teacher Conferences

  • 4/17/19 - NO SCHOOL - Parent-Teacher Conferences

  • 4/18 - 28 - NO SCHOOL - Easter Break


New Tenant on Campus

We are happy to welcome Pampas Fox Catering to our campus. The old school kitchen is being refurbished and Pampas Fox will be cooking out of it on a regular basis. They have their own parking and entrance in the alley so we will not see much of them, but the owners, Jorge and Lucia Bruno, are long time members of the local Catholic community and we are pleased to have them put the kitchen to good use!

Siena Academy is looking for a Head of School

Siena Academy is a small Catholic Montessori School in Great Falls, Virginia. The ideal candidate must be a faith-filled, practicing Catholic with a strong commitment to the Catholic philosophy of Montessori education and experienced in the Montessori method. Applicants must possess educational, managerial, communication and leadership skills. 
The start date for the position is July 1, 2019. To apply, please complete the application process outlined on the Office of Catholic Schools website https://www.arlingtondiocese.org/Catholic-Schools/Careers/  For more information, email Danielle at office@sienamontessori.org

How to Earn a $500 Tuition Credit

Many of our families have come to RMS because they've heard from an existing school family how happy they are at Renaissance. These personal referrals are the best marketing any school could ask for and we want to reward you for them!

With open enrollment beginning, now is the perfect time to to make a referral through our “Referral Bonanza” program.

Here's how it works:

  1. Talk to your friends and family with young children and encourage them to schedule a visit by calling the office or through our online scheduler at https://www.renaissancemontessorischool.org/schedule-a-visit/. We will be sending home a flyer for you to hand to a family you think might be interested as well!

  2. Any referred family that decides to apply after their observation and visit will have their application fee refunded.

  3. If a referred family is admitted and decides to enroll, the referring family will get a $500 tuition discount.

If you feel you don’t need that discount but your referred friend does, you can gift it to them!