Students at The New School Montessori in Cincinnati gathered to feed the Cincinnati homeless and learn about peace. Tommy Thompson, a Cincinnati native, Street Vibes Vendor and member of the Greater Cincinnati Coalition of the Homeless’ Speaker’s Bureau, spoke to the lower and upper elementary students about his personal struggles with homelessness. The students then assembled and donated 300 bagged lunches to Mercy Franciscan at St. John’s Sandwich Window in Over the Rhine.

The school service project was the culmination of a weeklong exploration of
peace. Students reflected on the meaning of peace through dialogue, writing, art, and action. Students began by reading What Does Peace Feel Like? by Vladimir Radunksy. This picture book focuses on exploring peace through all five of our senses. The children, in groups, identified examples of peace using each of the five senses. Children then explored ideas of peace through the four seasons by studying Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Each lower elementary child was partnered with an upper elementary child. The teams of two created a sensorial visual representation of peace for each of the four seasons. These visual representations then became tiles for our peace pole mosaic. The 3-6 pre-primary students explored peace through the five senses and designed glass tiles depicting their own visual representations of peace. These tiles were then suspended from the top of the peace pole. Hanging from the glass mosaic rods are the words, “May Peace Prevail On Earth,” in a variety of languages spoken by members of our school community: English, Russian, Korean, Spanish, French and Hebrew.

The New School Montessori is an independent Montessori educational center. Their mission is to foster the development of the whole child by providing an intellectually rich and challenging curriculum in a safe, caring and joyous environment. All their activities are carried out in an atmosphere of respect for the child and respect for one another. They strive to promote academic excellence, individuality, interdependence, imagination, creativity, inner discipline and self-esteem. The New School Montessori welcomes and honors cultural, ethnic, religious and economic diversity and is committed to teaching peace, conflict resolution and global awareness. Parental involvement is important in all aspects of the school’s operations; thus, we work to cultivate a genuine sense of extended family and community.

The Youth Art Peace Pole Project deeply thanks all the creative children at The New School Montessori, you kids rock!

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