Lower Elementary students recently encountered their first Cosmic Lesson; The Story of the Universe. In Montessori, Cosmic Lessons are meant to help students embrace a vision of expansive events that bind and unite us all. The Story of the Universe is the adaptation of scientific ideas meant to give impressions and ignite wonder and interest in the birth of our Universe and the coming of the Earth. Offered in story form, this story blends wonder and mystery with unknown truth, helping to establish relationship between notions and events – and of course to inspire further questions.
The students gathered in the Resource Room, viewed impressionistic charts and listened with rapture and intent to their teachers (who had prepared their presentation with aspects of Elise’s AMI training and Nina’s training with AMS). The water-colored impressions and experiments inspired students to consider states of matter, forces of attraction, temperatures from freezing to the explosion of a volcano!
As the formal presentations were complete, there were many questions by students (including a request to “please do it all again”).
As you know, in many traditional school settings, students are asked to locate their place in time and space with regard to family, neighborhood and community. In Montessori, we begin with the cosmic view so our students’ earliest orientation to their place and sense of belonging is rooted much more expansively in the Universe and upon our earth.
There was certainly a buzz among students who then moved to the classroom and outside, to embark on extensions, including original work on Pangaea globes.