North America, the United States, and Ohio

This week we began our exploration of the continents. This journey will take us well into spring as we discuss each continent and several countries within it.

We began our discussion by talking about the seven continents and identifying the one we live in—North America! Within North America, there are many countries, including our own, the United States. The United States comprises 50 states. We identified Ohio, the place that we call home.
We discuss indigenous peoples of each culture we visit throughout our Social Studies curriculum. We talked about the Miami Tribe, also known as the Myaamia, who once inhabited the Oxford area and the Cherokee Nation of America.

Traditionally when we take attendance at our morning meeting, we use the language of the country we are discussing to say “here.” We now include a choice of here, present, or “ahani” (pronounced “ah-hah-nee”), Cherokee for “here,” when taking attendance. 

The children can explore many works on the shelves about landmarks and monuments, North American animals, geography, flags, artifacts, and wooden blocks printed with the Cherokee syllabary. We have also included materials that are specific to the state of Ohio. These works will remain on the shelves for two weeks until we move on to our next country.

Posted in Primary, social studies

Monarch Butterflies

Several classrooms have been raising monarch butterflies from eggs found in our community. Following the life cycle is a fantastic way to kick off the new school year! Once a butterfly emerges from its chrysalis, we tag it as part of the Monarch Watch program, and then send it on its way to Mexico.

Posted in Lower Elementary, McGuffey, science, social studies

Something Special(s) in the Air

With the 2021/22 school year we have been able to bring back our Specials program safely. That means all our McGuffey students get to enjoy Art, Music, and PE every week!

We’re excited to add a new member to our Specials Team, this year McGuffey alumnus Emily Brosier has taken over our choice based art program. We’re thrilled to have her back home in the McGuffey community.

We’re holding a lot of our music classes outside whenever possible so that our students can sing and play joyfully and freely while keeping ourselves safe and healthy.

PE is back this year too so our students have the opportunity to get outside and be active while learning about teamwork and being a good sport.

Posted in art, Lower Elementary, Middle School, music, outside, physical education, Uncategorized, Upper Elementary

Preschool Playground Is Back!

We are happy to share that our Preschool Playground returns this summer. This is a free program that is open to the community and offers an opportunity for children to come together for socialization, play, and informal learning. It is held every Monday on McGuffey Montessori School’s main playground from 10:00am-Noon, June 7–August 9.

Children ages six and under will explore opportunities including a large sandbox, sports field, climbing and play structures, riding vehicles, athletic equipment, and a basketball court. Art activities will be provided in the spacious shaded picnic shelter. Parents are encouraged to bring drinks and snacks. Siblings ages nine and under are also welcome.

There is no fee, but a parent or guardian must be present with their child during their stay. For COVID safety, everyone 3 years and older is required to wear a mask.

Any weather-related cancellations will be posted here, so check in if it looks like it might rain. For more information, call (513) 523-7742 or reach us via our contact form. Hope to see you!

Posted in Uncategorized

LE Changemakers

We are changing the world! We’re really doing it! We’re making a real impact!” were just a few of the comments enthusiastically sung by our Lower Elementary students, reading about the impact that their Changemakers project has already made. 

Students in Grades 1/2/3 have been working tirelessly on their Changemakers project, identifying problems that matter to them and using their voices to advocate for change. Students crafted speeches, made advocacy posters, and even produced their own videos of the speeches. Yet, one student said after the videos were done, “we have to get the word out! This isn’t done yet!” He was right.

Miami University got wind of the incredible work students were doing, and wanted to know more! After much planning, students spent a whole morning at a local park presenting their posters, gallery-walk style, and giving speeches about their chosen causes. Turnout was incredible, and students were able to share their work with multiple Early Childhood education classes, department faculty, and various Miami staff. In addition to their in-person presentations, Miami communications did a video and written news article on the work they’ve been doing that went out to over eight thousand Ohio school principals, superintendents, and Deans of other colleges. This is in addition to the video and article being showcased in six different web locations, as well as three different newsletters. Talk about a real world impact.

Students recognized that, though they were passionate about their chosen causes, they also hope viewers see the inherent passion and potential that lies within each child and to give them the space to do the incredible things they are so clearly capable of. To sum it up best, one student said “We’re standing up for what we believe in, but even more than that, we’re standing up for kid’s rights. More adults should see what we’ve done, and treat kids better, and let other kids do this too, because we can make a difference.” Hear their voices, heed their causes. 

To catch a look at the newsletter and video, check out this link: 

To hear their speeches, visit: 

Posted in Uncategorized

HS Graphic Design

Our high school students have been learning about graphic design and digital drawing this semester.  They have had a great time learning the features and tools of the programs Procreate and Adobe Illustrator while drawing on iPads.  Students have learned how to work in multiple layers, how to apply drawing aids like perspective grids and blurring filters, how to resize, rotate, duplicate, and stretch objects. They have used this knowledge to create personal graphic memoirs, to create animated GIFs, to draw portraits of themselves and others, and as a final project, to develop a personal logo that can be printed on a product at our local Oxford Copy Shop. We took a walk there to hear from the in house graphic designer, and to see some work in progress in the shop.  

Posted in Uncategorized

Ready, Set, BID

Our online auction is officially open! It will be open until 10pm on Wednesday, May 26. That’s two weeks of bidding. The auction will close the same day as our Annual Egg Drop.

This is our most accessible auction ever. Bid during the day and night, bid in your pajamas, bid while you are watching Netflix. Just bid! 

For the first time, family and friends can bid from afar so share the link. Grandparents could bid on the pony experience for your child or the face painting. We have some amazing items that range from a Florida vacation home to a quarter cow of beef from Reserve Run, awesome experiences and memberships, handmade items, and yummy baked goods from our own school community. 

Note who offered the item for auction and who you are bidding against (clik on “bids”) so we can get to know one another a little better. Items are still being added so check back after your first round of bidding.


If you bid in the Moon Coop’s auction earlier this year, you already have an account for the auction site. Big thanks to the Moon Coop for blazing the trail with an online auction earlier this year.

In addition to our generous donors of auction items, we are grateful to the following sponsors for our event:

Super Duper Sponsors
Fey Bruder Insurance
Nicole and Joel Malin

Awesome School Sponsor
Downing Fruit Farm
Independence Orthopedics
JYC Customs

Happy Kid Sponsor
Luna Blu Salon Spa Galleria

Posted in Uncategorized

Posted in Uncategorized

High School World History

Together with my students, we have been examining the rise of different types of fascism around the world in the interwar era.  We have studied the social and political events and contexts, as well as the personal background of some of the authoritarian leaders that rose to power in those times in different countries. The new unit that we are just beginning is The Second World War. Students will try to understand what circumstances led some countries to support or oppose participation in the war, as well as how the civilians were as much a part of a war effort as soldiers/combatants. 

I always strive to help my students think like historians. It means learning to ask questions, critiquing or having a critical look at sources of information, considering multiple perspectives and narratives, judging the quality of evidence, and finally, forming reasoned opinions. In our classes, we use investigations and questions to frame our own inquiry.  We scaffold and develop new knowledge based on previous learning.  We incorporate historical sources that are used to back up students’ own claims.  We practice interpreting and bringing arguments of diverse historical narratives.  This is my emphasis on helping students to communicate about concepts, historical events, and processes, as well as on big ideas.

Posted in Uncategorized


Primary students have continued the year of animal study with a unit on reptiles. We learned that reptiles can live in water or on land. They can have short legs or no legs at all. Most reptiles lay eggs and the young reptiles can take care of themselves after hatching.

Our shelves are filled with reptile models and puzzles as well as a snake skeleton and snake skin. Students have been fascinated and creating their own reptile works, for example, drawing in the stripes on a snake after completing a rubbing of the outline. In Kindergarten Studio, Kindergarteners made booklets highlighting and naming the parts of a turtle.

Posted in Uncategorized