There are many wonderful established traditions at Pine Grove School that make lasting
impressions, such as our Friendship Fire, Peace Ceremonies, Pony Rides, Field Trips, Spring
Cultural Celebration and all-school assemblies. We also celebrate our parents with an annual Dad’s
Day and a special Mother’s Day Tea.
Peace education is the backbone of the Montessori tradition, and influences every aspect of the
Montessori curriculum. We think of our Peace curriculum as the Golden Thread that binds every
other subject, ceremony and celebration together. Here are some of the ways we create a peaceful
community in our classrooms and our community:
Planted at our school is a Peace Pole with the inscription “May Peace Prevail on Earth" four different languages. We use the pole as a focal point of our Fall Peace Ceremony, and as a reminder everyday of our school’s mission of spreading peace throughout our classroom and community.
Each classroom has a dedicated area that helps childrent to focus on practicing peace with our minds and bodies. The Peace Corner is a place where students can rest their minds and bodies, and reflect and recharge.
We reinforce peaceful activities throughout the day, through Peace Circles, where children sing songs about friendship and work through activities that build and strengthen our community. We have special objects like our silk Peace Rose and Peace Baskets, that become physical objects that children can focus on when they are praticing the important work for conflict resolution. A Kindness Jar collects notes or drawings that applaud peaceful acts in our community, and our Peace Chain, which was started in 1986 and now wraps around our school, gives students a visual reminder of their vital role in our peaceful community.
Our teachers have been specially trained in Peaceful Conflict Resolution, using Peer Problem Solving methods that give children active roles in solving conflicts with their peers.
Throughout the year, we use seasonal celebrations to incorporate our Peace Curriculum in to our students’ larger communities. We hold UNICEF collections around Halloween, host a Friendship Fire in our pine grove around Thanksgiving, and enjoy caring and sharing celebrations for Valentine’s Day, among many other celebrations.