After years of dreaming and researching, and many, many months of planning, preparing and collating, on Sunday we were able to share our new Miro Room with prospective families and their children. The Miro Room will be the first Montessori programme for infants and toddlers in the entire Nelson region. An existing building behind the preschool class at our Kauri site has been transformed into a beautiful and peaceful environment with a large garden for the children to explore.
To watch on as the tamariki (enrolled to begin in the classroom on the 21st of November) used the furniture, delighted in turning on the taps they could reach unaided, and explore everything in the environment in their own way was such a delight.
Having siblings present solidified the feeling of whanau / family which can only contribute to the children feeling that it is their place. Feeling safe and nurtured within an environment that is predictable will in turn enable them to access new learning, new ways of being and hopefully a great deal of joy!
One aspiration for Miro Room is the Maori concept of whakawhanaungatanga or relationship building. As a teacher in Pohutukawa class at Founders Park for 15 years, I saw that as we built a community of learners within the classroom, another community was being built among whanau outside the classroom door. Over time we shared celebrations and also came together to support each other through some very painful periods. When I come across families many years after they have moved on from Montessori, it is this sense of community, and talk of friendships that have endured over time, that they hold closest to their hearts.
As Nissa, Louise and I talked afterwards we became aware of just how multi-cultural this new community Miro Room is with families from at least eight different countries! We shared too the conversations of delight and interest people had expressed about the space we have created for the children and how excited everyone is feeling about this new step in all our lives.
Together, we will celebrate the joy of your tamariki learning and growing through these very precious early years.
If you are interested in viewing the Miro Room, please contact Nissa by emailing her on firstname.lastname@example.org