Thank you to those who completed the Volunteer Engagement Survey or attended the Coffee with Jon regarding our parent organization held just before Spring Break. The ideas offered and opinions expressed gave us valuable insight into the thoughts of our parent body. Our parent organization’s chief purpose is to support the mission of the school, but we recognize that Springmont is now serving a new generation of families and that it is time to refresh this vital community organization.
While survey participation was not as robust as we had hoped (7% of parents submitted responses), there are important and meaningful results to share.
- Respondents feel that the most important school-wide events to attend are Opening Night, International Night, Academic Fair, and the Springmont Festival & Montessori Mile.
- Almost 50% of parents who responded indicated their “preference/vision for involvement in the Springmont community” is “attending as many class and school-wide events as my schedule permits” while 22% felt that “volunteering to help plan school-wide events” was their preference and 15% chose “volunteering in a leadership capacity” as their vision for involvement. Most parents who wished to volunteer but had not yet done so commented that limited time/scheduling conflicts were significant factors while some parents noted they would like more detailed information about tasks and time commitments for the various volunteer opportunities.
- Almost 90% of respondents’ primary reasons for wanting to attend parent association meetings/events were “to be involved in the Springmont community” but high numbers also selected “to socialize with other parents” and “to see my child(ren)’s work and school experience.”
- The overwhelmingly preferred time for parent association meetings was 8:30 a.m. and the “best method(s) of communication about parent association meetings/events” were email reminders and Springmont Weekly News.
Taking survey and meeting feedback into account, Head of School Jon Alden committed to four important initiatives designed to allow and encourage more parents to become involved.
- Simplifying our parent organization’s branding, most meaningfully by updating its current name from IMPACT (Involved Montessori Parents in ACTion) to something more easily and immediately understood
- Requesting a parent representative from each class designated to attending each parent organization meeting
- Having more frequent parent organization meetings, allowing meetings to serve as social opportunities in addition to discussions of upcoming events/volunteer opportunities
- Continuing to emphasize the importance of volunteerism in the admission process
Our next parent association meeting is Friday, March 27 at 8:30 a.m. We hope to see you there!
The winter blues, the doldrums, the blahs…by now, we’re all feeling them! While not a particularly cold winter, it’s been a wet, gloomy one. But just because it’s miserable outside, doesn’t mean the campus farm and our students aren’t working hard! Given the choice, which they are, our Middle School students still opt to work outside despite the cold, wet weather. On particularly raw days, we do stay inside to watch the documentary Keep the Hives Alive. (If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it!)
So, what on earth are they doing on these wintry days? The animals always need clean living quarters so there is mucking out and refreshing of barns and coops to be done. During warm weather, the apiary gets overgrown with goldenrod and wild raspberries which need to be cut back. Garden beds must be turned over and cover crops replanted before spring. One hive needs a new platform so pavers must be laid and leveled.
We are extremely fortunate to have two greenhouses at Springmont. One is inside and already full of flats seeded with tomato, zucchini, eggplant, catnip and basil! In the outdoor greenhouse, thyme, turmeric and sage overwintered wonderfully well. Students have sown flax, delphinium, cilantro, celosia and milkweed, and we anxiously await those first sprouts.
This is also an exceptional time to plant trees. Our students have planted apple, plum, pear and chokeberry trees, and we look forward to more apple trees, an almond, and a crabapple tree. While trees may seem dormant in the winter, they actually do most of their root-growing during this period because there is no new leaf growth to support. These high-nectar-bearing fruit trees will support our bees during this spring.
So, just because it is winter, doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty to do outdoors. And, our students love to get out, get some fresh air, and burn off that cabin fever!
Thanks to the 2019-20 Springmont Fund, eight Springmont faculty members and one administrator attended the AMI-USA Annual Refresher Course in Seattle, Washington, during Presidents’ Day weekend. Alongside “The Child and Nature” theme, keynote speaker Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods, set the tone for the weekend as he discussed his newest book The Wild Calling and the powerful link between nature and the development of the whole child. Our faculty were represented in nearly every workshop track, including Infant/Toddler, Primary, Elementary, Adolescent, and Equity. They are thrilled to bring what they learned back to Atlanta to share with their Springmont colleagues. Thank you to all the generous Springmont Fund donors for this wonderful professional development opportunity.
Springmont is happy to offer fun and educational activities after school! This spring, Primary students ages 4 and up can enjoy Bricks4Kidz, Sports Mash-Up, Music & Movement and/or Yoga while Elementary and Middle School students can select from a plethora of favorites plus new offerings including Exploring Our Senses, Bee Club and LEGO Career Academy.
Click the links below for additional information and online registration.
There's something for everyone! Spaces are limited and filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration and payment are due by Thursday, March 19 at 4 p.m.
Questions? Email Tiffany Orem
IMPACT is going green! Announcing IMPACT's first annual Landschool Gear Pop-Up Shop! Clean out your closets and swap some outgrown Landschool gear. Parent volunteers will collect gently-used hiking boots, rain boots, sneakers, pants, hats, backpacks and jackets in the Pavilion and at the Fine Arts Cottage today through Wednesday. Then, plan to pick-up some Landschool items before your child's Spring Landschool Trip by attending the Pop-Up Shop at the Activity Court this Friday, 9:30-11:00 a.m. and 2:30-4:30 p.m.