Cedarwood Montessori Education

We offer alternative educational settings using the Montessori method. For more info pop over to our website.

Operating as usual

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 02/12/2022

Last week in the nursery our solar system continued to engage the children - and inspired the planning.
They made a play-dough orrery; ordered pictures and names of planets; formed starry artwork in frames and built model rockets.
They also acted as planets themselves, orbiting the ‘sun’ (tyre with wooden rays) in the sandpit. Sensory play involved making craters in a floury ‘moon surface’ using pebble ‘meteorites’.
Other activities included shape-sorting and bread making in addition to the Montessori activities.
Circle times concentrated on kindness and courtesy; greetings, use of different voices for indoors and out, and expressing individual likes and dislikes, whilst embracing differences.
The reception children enjoyed a Tens and Units counting game with rockets and glass beads.
Outside, the children held streamers in the strong winds, and went on a leaf-collecting walk on the sunniest day.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 17/11/2022

The theme was ‘Fire and Fireworks’ in the Nursery last week, with the children talking about their experiences of Bonfire Night.

Autumn leaves provided beautiful fiery colours for a bonfire leaf collage and making a giant print of fireworks, using tubes and ‘sparkles’ proved a popular group activity - although Biscuit also turned green and sparkly in patches, being a little too close to this activity!

Indoors, some new play-dough was made and the children enjoyed holding yoga poses, such as the ‘bow pose’ shown here.
The Reception children built a model of the Houses of Parliament, - complete with barrels of gunpowder - from wooden blocks, with great attention to detail.

They joined the Nursery for some practice fire drills, carried out this week to ensure that all children, adults and dogs could safely exit the building in an emergency.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 10/11/2022

Last week the Nursery and Reception children looked at how Diwali, the Festival of Lights, is celebrated within the Hindu population.
They listened to the story of Rama and Sita, acted out with puppets, to show the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness.
Some children enjoyed re-enacting the story afterwards.
They also made decorated salt-dough tea-light holders (diyas) and Rangoli patterns, using coloured rice.
New equipment has enabled the guttering to be built into more complex ball runs and good problem solving was seen in successfully rolling a ball from top to bottom of these.

The thick layer of Autumn leaves in the outside area have been a source of great amusement and industry as the children devise various ways to scoop them up (..to be scattered again, soon after!)

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 05/10/2022

Over the last two weeks the nursery children have started thinking about Autumnal changes at circle time.
The September sunshine has allowed a lot of playful learning outside, for example balancing skills on obstacle courses with beams, seesaws, and bouncy tyres; the original ideas being developed further by the children themselves.
Also outside there has been wall-painting with water, mark-making in a tray of oats and cooked, coloured spaghetti provided wonderful sensory play.
Under supervision, some children also used a real saw on a log.
Catching and throwing skills have been practiced with ball and beanbag games and a skipping rope was used to improve jumping skills.
After singing and playing: “Autumn leaves are falling…🎶” the children collected some leaves and made imprints in salt dough.
The children also made their own play-dough and used it to hold spaghetti strands, onto which they dextrously threaded breakfast loops. This activity kept them very busy during a particularly wet and windy Friday!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 19/09/2022

Caring for our Oceans was the theme this week in the nursery, using the story book, ‘Sharing a shell’, to illustrate symbiotic relationships in a rock-pool. ‘The Rainbow Fish’ was also read at circle time, to help understand the advantages of sharing. A large communal picture from The Rainbow Fish was made for the wall.
The children enjoyed cutting, sticking, drawing and sewing jelly-fish models and the youngest particularly enjoyed a sensory play activity with ocean animals embedded in jelly!
The Reception children tackled challenging jigsaws, and worked on number place values using Montessori beads to help them. Everyone sang the ‘months of the year’ song, whilst looking at the new nursery frieze, to help remember the names of the 12 months.

The staff are delighted to see how cooperative the children have become over the last year, for example working together to construct a house for All (kitchen, bedroom, even a garden for vegetables!) using ‘loose parts’ in the outside area. A joy to see!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 11/09/2022

The new term began with a reminder of routines and work cycles in the nursery.

With the summer holidays and beach trips fresh in the children’s minds, there was a seaside theme for activities; painting sandy sandcastles, fishing in blue rice ‘rockpools’ and sharing stories of beach trips.

The children made their own sparkly play-dough and the children in our new reception class (for children aged 5-6) the children enjoyed working in the dedicated Montessori rooms, working on Early Literacy, Maths and Practical Life activities.

Outside, the guttering was used to race different shapes and colours of autumn leaves, with only water from watering cans to propel them.

The life cycle of an oak tree was demonstrated and some children planted acorns, hoping to see saplings emerge soon… 🌱



As the holidays come to an end and the new academic year starts, this feels like something we should try to be mindful of.


Happy birthday to an amazing woman who fought long and hard to be taken seriously and thank goodness she did!

It's a shame that Google aren't acknowledging her birthday and not only are they not, but they're not even acknowledging anything else so could have easily done so.
It feels particularly wrong considering the following...

"It is well known that Google's co-founders, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, as children were educated under the Montessori education system. They are proud of it and consider it one of the fundamental reasons they are so successful today."


There's so much we can learn from children ♡


Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 25/07/2022

Last week in the Nursery was our final week before breaking for the summer holidays and it was spent finishing our life cycle wall display/story board with a beautiful butterfly.
Sewing skills were needed to finish off the individual felt butterflies, too, and suitable sticks collected to turn them into puppets.
A coastal scene was set up outside, as a new kingdom to explore, and expanding gel balls provided plenty of sensorial play, using hands and feet!
Biscuit looked very tempted by the food arriving for our end of year picnic. She is very much looking forward to seeing you all again in September - as are the rest of the nursery team 🙂

Wishing you all a wonderful summer!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 18/07/2022

Last week the nursery cocoons emerged into beautiful small tortoiseshell butterflies and the Primary children joined us to watch them being set free.
The lifecycle wall display was continued with the chrysalis stage and individual caterpillars and butterflies made using various media, including clay, felt and paints.
Circle time focussed on sensible clothes to wear in the summertime and how to keep safe in the sun.
The children also enjoyed making temporary pictures from natural objects in empty picture frames.


Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 11/07/2022

The Nursery children enjoyed learning about Space last week; acting out the solar system, making their own junk model rockets, using a ‘moon-dust-and-asteroid’ model to show how craters formed, baking ‘moon-rock’ cakes and watching water rockets being launched outside.

Meanwhile, the hungry Nursery caterpillars stopped eating and turned into cocoons, after attaching themselves high up in their tank.

This inspired the children to continue with their Eric Carle-style collage of the lifecycle, for our Nursery wall.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 03/07/2022

And these too...



Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 03/07/2022

Eric Carle’s ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ book has been inspiration for various cross-curricular activities in the nursery this week; along with the nursery’s own hungry caterpillars.
These have been munching their way through freshly-picked nettle leaves and been doubling in size every few days.
The children are amazed at the amount of ‘poop’ they have produced!
In addition to animal growth, the children have been looking at plant development. Some of the beans planted in plastic bags showed both the roots and shoots developing from a seed. These were out-growing their bags so were planted outside this week - well away from the caterpillars! 🐛
The grass seed has sprouted and grown so well the children needed to cut it before they could use it in a mini world scene!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 01/07/2022

Over the last few weeks in the seniors they've been drawing and exploring the properties of 3D geometric shapes. And completing their Henri Rousseau page and zoomed in painting studies of his work.

They have started their exploration of the abstract artist, Kandinsky with the aim to make some 3D models inspired by his art.

And have also been looking at a range of myths & mythical creatures from different cultures, ready to create their own imaginative pieces of creative writing!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 27/06/2022

The children were sad when the froglets left the Nursery, but -great excitement- they now have baby caterpillars to watch metamorphose into butterflies!
Last week in the nursery some of the children helped make a happy environment for the caterpillars in a tank, with nettles for food, and have noticed how much they have already grown over their 2 days with us.
As if on cue, a meadow brown butterfly landed in the playground on a child’s finger, to demonstrate the adult stage of their lifecycle.

The Nursery was full of benign pirates this week, with origami hats and telescopes. The Pirate theme extended into Literacy at Circle Time, when ‘treasure’ words (correct sounds) were separated from ‘rubbish’ and put in a treasure chest.
Outdoor water play included testing hypotheses on whether given items would float or sink and also looking at the capacity of containers.
The number line was used in various Numeracy games.
Biscuit watched on, providing support where needed, in loco parentis.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 23/06/2022

Over the past couple weeks in the primary...

The children have been busy making a giant tree out of cardboard tubes for a literacy/ biology project on Cedarwood values and wishes for the earth.

The subtraction board has been popular and many children have been making their own little books on subtraction facts, with lots of enthusiasm. We’ve heard comments like “I just can’t wait until I can do my next pages!!”

Morgan introduced a material for exploring area, which really took off and the children started to draw each other pages of rectangles to calculate the area of.

The children also learned a few new songs and came up with associated actions, which they then performed to the whole school.

The children who have joined us recently have integrated further into the rhythms and culture of Cedarwood. They are coming up with their own ideas for taking the work further, and being successful in making them happen.


Exciting news!

We are holding an Open Day at our Seale Hayne Nursery site, this Saturday (25th June), from 10am-12pm.

No booking required and directions are available via email if needed.

See you there!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 20/06/2022

With the recent lovely weather, the Nursery children have been playing outside a lot.

Water-play was popular in the heat last week- and the children made sure the garden plants also stayed hydrated!

A corner of the garden, in dappled shade, was perfect for eating lunch outside.

Using letters painted onto stones, and a temporary number line painted on the fence, the children continued working on literacy and numeracy skills in the outdoor area; blending letter sounds to spell CVC words and calculating their scores in ‘beanbag skittles’.

Beanbags were also used for ‘egg and spoon’ games -and in a stacking challenge.

The children studied a variety of sea shells and sorted them into groups by their characteristics.

There were also opportunities for venturing further afield out of doors - for minibeast hunts and nature-inspired art.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 13/06/2022

Last week in the nursery, the children enjoyed making their own cordial, using flowers from the Nursery garden. (Both children and staff enjoyed the result!)
New equipment this term has included lovely wooden building blocks, used for construction and small world play, and some small beanbags. The beanbags were used for balancing challenges and also for skittles, which the children made from tubes and bottles, weighted down with sand and then painted.
Sensory play with coloured, cooked spaghetti was enjoyed by the youngest children and uncooked pasta was coloured and threaded into necklaces by others.
A lovely listening game allowed the hearing sense to be highlighted too; matching sounds into pairs when blindfolded.
Some children learnt to order the letters in their names using labelled cars and a garage with matching letters, to drive them to, eventually managing to order their letters without the help of the garage.
Studying the parts of the plant alongside watching a bean sprout in a plastic bag in the window helped explain the function of roots, stems and leaves.
There was also a multi-cultural triple birthday celebration in the Nursery this week, where the ‘Happy Birthday’ song was sung in 3 languages. In addition to English, a Mexican grandmother sang in Spanish and our Polish staff and families gave a good rendition, too!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 31/05/2022

Last week was a busy week for the seniors...they completed their magnificent poems inspired by William Blake’s ‘Tiger Tiger’ poem and illustrated them beautifully.
They calculated angles in maths and focused on marine biology in science where they created marine animal top trump cards.
They also baked some cookies and decorated them Kandinsky style!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 31/05/2022

Last week there was some lovely focused work in the nursery on numbers, letters and colours.
Fun games have helped to consolidate the phonemes learned this half term.
Other activities have included food-tasting and a Jubilee tea party, prepared by the children themselves whilst wearing the crowns they had made.
Some, fascinated by a book on volcanoes, made a papier mâché volcano - which ‘erupted’ a number of times in the sandpit. After this eventually disintegrated the children collaborated nicely to build their own craters from sand using water as larva.
Two children celebrated their birthdays with Montessori ‘walks around the sun’ and by sharing edible treats.
A vet’s corner was also set up, where injured animals received excellent care.
The nursery flowers are blooming as we end this half term.
Wishing everyone a happy half term and we look forwarding to seeing you all after the holidays!

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 25/05/2022

Last week at Cedarwood the primary aged children have continued exploring butterflies - naming and painting them from ID books and photos.

Also lots of children have been working with the golden bead material to match symbol and bead 1-9000.. it’s epic work and it involved fantastic team work and precision whilst also being a fun counting and building game.. this kind of big work inspires other children to also have a go ✨

Other work includes… crayon rubbings with the sandpaper letters to become little alphabet books, a number scroll to record all the numbers in their hierarchy (Cedarwood’s record is 655!!), finding factors with the coloured pegboard, careful snack preparation, flower parts labelling and antonym card matching...


Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 16/05/2022

Last week, in the nursery...
The last of the nursery froglets have now been released and the frog lifecycle models coming along well.
The children did some good early number work and rose to the challenge of writing the digits 1, 2 and 3 in various ways, inside and out.
The older children worked on place value of larger numbers, too, using the golden beads.

The large moveable alphabet was used to sound out and spell CVC words in small groups.
Paper aeroplanes were flown in the playground on a particularly windy day, flowers were planted outside & some fascinating mini beasts were found on a mini excursion.
Indoors, the children enjoyed musical activities and arranging Spring flowers.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 14/05/2022

This week in the primary....

Our youngers ‘wolf cubs’ group has blossomed this term with lots of new children. So much wonderful exploration happening...

Big projects so far include a forest of Cedarwood trees and our values, stop-motion animations + story boards and flower dissection and labelling.

Alongside this, all the children have been exploring arithmetic through the Montessori beads and materials, geometry studies (3-D, polygons and quadrilaterals in particular), language through isolated sounds, spelling common 100 words and writing funny poetry. Also after lunch quiet reading time offers a chance for the children to make their way through our early readers library.

Our rhythm of the day continues with a morning circle where we sing and introduce the day, a focused work cycle including chosen / offered work + snack prep, then lunch+play, reading/work, jobs rota and then a final circle.

We’ve been learning lots of new songs recently - such a great way of building community.

At the core of Montessori is the principal of following the child’s development and their interests. We offer the children lots of new presentations that are embodied and based in material whilst also sparking the children’s inspiration and curiosity in the world (hence the name ‘cosmic education’). The environment is set up to allow the children to be curious, successful and empowered.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 08/05/2022

Meanwhile, in the nursery...
Further successful release of froglets encouraged the Nursery children to look at life cycles this week, comparing those of different animals including humans.
Also thinking about what human babies need to keep healthy and thrive. There were two Birthdays to celebrate this week, including our team leader, Dyane.
All the children have been busy cutting, sticking, painting and baking for her. This gave the children lots of opportunities to practice practical life skills such as grating and cutting with knives.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 08/05/2022

Over the last couple of weeks in the 11yrs+ class they have been analysing William Blake’s ‘The Tiger’ poem and starting to write their own poems inspired by his. They have been looking at regular & irregular polygons, and calculating angles. Time has also been spent on research for their personal projects, some monoprinting and learning how to enlarge images using accurate proportions. Some larger scale collage, mixed media and abstract work will develop from this!

There's also an example of some sketchbook work showing the completion of our investigation into Hindu festivals and symbols.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 03/05/2022

A few thoughts to keep in our minds as we start the week ♡

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 01/05/2022

This week the children enjoyed exploring the new nursery layout and sharing their holiday news.
With May Day approaching, the children collected flowers to prepare floral headbands. They sang Spring-time songs and danced to the recorder, both around a maypole and under branches of May.
Some of the greenery collected was also used to make a giant ‘Green Man’ collage outside.

There was great excitement seeing that some of the class tadpoles had developed into jumping froglets over Easter (which have now been returned to their pond)

In order to sew grass seed, there were mini-expeditions to collect soil to mix with the compost and water. This made a tremendous gloop that provided lots of fun! Once mixed they then sprinkled grass seeds on to the mix.

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 09/04/2022

‘Spring’ and ‘Nests’ were the themes in the Nursery this week.
The children looked at information books and built model nests with blue (blackbird) eggs. They sang an egg & chick song involving addition and subtraction, and successfully divided nine ‘dragon eggs’ in the outdoor area between 3 children.
A fun Science session was spent looking at different types of primates (monkeys being a continued interest of the children), and phonics/ letter work was practiced daily. Looking at shapes and ordering different lengths of Montessori rods was also enjoyed.
Biscuit watched attentively, legs crossed..! 

Photos from Cedarwood Montessori Education's post 02/04/2022

This week in the nursery one of our Primary children shared her project on Nests with the and the empty nest she brought in inspired the children to make various nests of their own outside.
Practical Life skills this week included washing our tablecloth, (following a spillage of milk); cleaning chairs (after messy play), preparing snacks and sweeping the floor.

The children continued number work, with adult support, using the Montessori rods and sandpaper letters, Biscuit watching the presentations attentively, with the others, sitting nicely with legs crossed!

The children also worked on independent activities on their own mats, such as threading beads, sorting shapes and completing jigsaws.
There was also great excitement when a large lorry with hydraulic arms arrived in the car park to change the skip!





Seale Hayne
Newton Abbot

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