Montessori Foundation | MFA | IMC The Online Resource of the Montessori Foundation, Montessori Family Alliance and the International Montessori Council Fri, 24 Mar 2023 18:47:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Montessori Foundation | MFA | IMC 32 32 Social Justice Parenting book review Fri, 24 Mar 2023 18:09:41 +0000
Social Justice Parenting

Written by Dr. Traci Baxley

A friend of mine gave me a copy of this book, and I’m so glad that he did! Dr. Baxley is an interesting, honest, and insightful author. She has taken social justice and parenting (which makes some of us a bit uncomfortable) and delivered a book for parents and other caregivers for children. She has produced a work that not only goes straight to the heart of the American ‘legend’ that is more commonly known as American ‘history.’

Many of the ideas and strategies that Dr. Baxley espouses in her book are very much in alignment with Dr. Montessori’s pedagogical method and philosophy. She cites values such as: respect for self and others; giving children a voice; actively seeking change; problem solving as a family in preparation for problem solving in their community and country; and trusting intuition along with factual information as the main components for social-justice parenting. And she shares real life stories to demonstrate how to put these values into practice.

“Modeling Advocacy” is just one of the chapters in this book. The author states in many of the chapters that parents (adults) in children’s lives must model through their actions the values and principles that they want children to learn and practice in their lives. She states, “Self-education, effective communication, and maintaining a support system are the keys to self-advocacy.”

One of the main characteristics of Dr. Baxley’s writing is that she lets the reader know that parenting takes conscious awareness of ourselves and others, that it can be challenging, that she has made mistakes with her own children along the way, and that we can mend mistakes and move forward. Readers will feel encouraged, develop new parenting skills, and appreciate their own commitment to children and to helping make our world a better place to live for all people.

I highly recommend this book for your adult library and for parent or faculty discussion groups. It can be purchased from amazon. com and other booksellers.

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Healing Breath book review Thu, 23 Mar 2023 16:40:01 +0000

Healing Breath: A Guided Meditation through Nature for Kids

Written by William Meyer

Illustrated by Brittany R. Jacobs

Mr. Meyer wrote this book to help children release anxiety in general and more specifically about the condition of the planet through meditation. The illustrations are colorful and calming and they bring the author’s words to life. I would suggest that this book be presented to children during the elementary years, as these are the years of great imagination. They will need to use their great imaginations to picture the ideas and places in the meditation. They will also need to have had enough life experiences to use as a basis for this imagining.

If I were going to present this meditation to students or to one of my own children, I would definitely start them off with a shorter meditation or with practicing the Silence Game that we often use in Montessori schools. Depending on their comfort and skill levels, I would read the book aloud with children or let them read it to me. Seeing the illustrations and hearing the words will help children imagine the scenes when they actually go to meditation, close their eyes, and visualize the scenes the author describes.

I would also read the author’s words out loud, alone, before leading the meditation with children. Practicing this way will help me become familiar with the language, set my tone of voice, and determine the pace of reading.

This is a beautiful meditation and I think that elementary children will relax and enjoy this quieting practice.

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Whatever It Takes! Keeping Your Children in Montessori through High School Graduation Tue, 14 Mar 2023 22:20:40 +0000

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I Wish You More book review Tue, 14 Mar 2023 08:52:33 +0000

I Wish You More

Written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal & Tom Lichtenheld

For the most part, we wish more good, kind, and together things for our children than the opposite. The illustrations are wonderful as they capture in very concrete ways the ideas in the text. It has few words and two-page spreads for each wish. That gives lots of room for talking about the illustrations. I would recommend this book for children two years old through young adults. It can be purchased from most book suppliers.

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