Congratulations Class of 2013!

We would like to congratulate our eighth grade middle school students who are graduating from Foothills Montessori School and going on to the exciting realm of high school!

Next week they will be honored at a special Graduation Ceremony, where they will give speeches, receive diplomas, celebrate with parents, fellow students and staff, and commemorate their academic achievements.

2013 Foothills Montessori Graduates and their chosen high school:

Helena Ward – Bishop Gorman

Elizabeth Carleton – Bishop Gorman

Javid Habashi – Bishop Gorman

Spencer Schmidt – Lake Mead Christian Academy

Robyn Myers – Green Valley High School

Noelani Mattstedt – Green Valley High School

Allie Weddell – Las Vegas Academy

Cindy CK Tung – Las Vegas Academy

Cristina Pate – Las Vegas Academy

Marleigh Pape – Las Vegas Academy

2012-13 sure was a busy one, filled with history, science, math, language arts, hands-on projects, foreign languages, field trips and more. Ms. Erica has been meticulously recording it all in her classroom blog, complete with pictures and video. Check it out!

Foothills Montessori School is a private Montessori school serving families in Henderson, Las Vegas and Southern Nevada.

The Montessori Mafia

In this Washington Post piece, Peter Sims calls entrepreneurs like Jeff Bezos, Jimmy Wales and Larry Page “the creative elite” and “the Montessori Mafia,” an idea echoed by a follow-up article by the Harvard Business Review, “Montessori Builds Innovators.”   [button url=”” target=”_blank” size=”small” style=”coolblue” ]STUDIES, VIDEOS AND MORE[/button]

Foothills Montessori School is a private Montessori school serving families in Henderson, Las Vegas and Southern Nevada.

Loving the Earth

All throughout the month of April, FMS students learned about the earth’s ecosystems and focused on how to preserve them for future generations.

Primary students learned about “the three Rs” (reduce, reuse and recycle) and sewed cloth napkins so they wouldn’t have to throw away so many paper towels. Elementary students toured Whole Foods to learn about where our food comes from and participated in a variety of upcycling projects like planting herbs in old Chinese food takeout boxes, making natural air fresheners from baking soda and essential oils, and using old T-shirts to make headbands and bracelets.


On Earth Day, middle school students helped the primary students in a completely student-directed project that involved planting a basil garden, building a homemade birdbath and making windchimes out of found materials.

We encourage parents to check out to learn more about the environmental impact of waste and this Pinterest board for upcycling projects you can do at home.

Finally, seventh grader Kyla Savage wrote a poem about her Earth Day experience. Enjoy!

“On Monday we went to go celebrate

Earth day because our earth is so great

We went to P4 to help them with crafts

We had lots of fun and shared lots of laughs


There were 3 main things we wanted to get done

All earth friendly and all lots of fun

It involved paint, glue, pots, cans, hangers and flowers

We managed to get it done in just under an hour


Wind chimes are what the first group made

They will blow in the wind as the preschoolers play

They were made with recycled materials such as cans, buttons and string

They were a great addition to the garden this spring


The second group planted in the yard of the class

They planted Basil that was next to the grass

Even though the planting made some what of a mess

The preschoolers still loved it and thought it was the best


Making bird baths was also lots of fun

We worked together until the pots were done

We stacked the pots and painted them yellow, orange, pink and blue

These projects were eco friendly and we had a great time too”

Foothills Montessori School is a private Montessori school serving families in Henderson, Las Vegas and Southern Nevada.

Parent Survey Results

Dear FMS Families;

A few months ago we sent out a survey asking for your feedback on various aspects of Foothills Montessori School. As you can see, the responses were overwhelmingly positive, with the average response a 4.4 out of 5 in every category across all grade levels. We enjoyed reading the comments from the “What do you like most about FMS” section, and made a word cloud which might show up on future staff T-shirts!

We want to thank you for taking the time to give your input. We are paying special attention to your suggestions for improvement and expansion as we prepare for the 2013-14 school year. Here are just a few of the areas we are focusing on:

1) Parent-Teacher Communication. Many of you expressed the desire, especially those with children in the Primary grade level, to receive more ongoing feedback about your child’s progress. As you know, Montessori students don’t leave much of a “paper trail” nor are measured as frequently with tests, grades and other rubrics like those in public school. This can make it difficult for you to understand in which subjects your child is excelling and in which he/she may be struggling. Also, younger children are sometimes unable to fully explain their day-to-day activities. We hope the teacher blogs have provided a window into their world and strongly encourage you to subscribe to their classroom blog (so you get automatic email updates when new posts are added) if you haven’t already done so. However, we understand that while the blogs can provide an overall snapshot of classroom activities, they do not provide individualized feedback about a particular child’s academic and social progress. Therefore, we have been working on a pilot program via Google Apps that will allow teachers to track and share information about your child that will only be visible to that child’s parent. We are experimenting with various ways technology can be used as a tool to communicate more information about your child’s weekly and monthly progress. We are also upgrading our email system and emphasizing the importance of one-on-one communication.

2) Technology. Technology in the classroom is a hot topic these days and one that is on the minds of FMS parents and staff as well. Survey responses showed that you are overwhelmingly in support of adding more technology into the FMS curriculum, especially at the elementary and middle school levels. Over the summer we will be updating our bandwidth capabilities as well as our hardware and software infrastructure as we move forward with this new agenda. Typing classes, MS Office basics, and Adobe programs are some of the new subjects we are considering integrating into the curriculum. We discussed this subject at length at our most recent in-service and are committed to moving forward in a way that will ultimately prepare our students for 2020 and beyond.

3) Parking/Drop-Off Issues. We encourage staff and parents alike to drive with courtesy and to not linger in the drop-off and fire lanes. We know there is limited parking and that the morning drop-off can be hectic as parents rush to get children to school on time and themselves to work. We are planning to have more staff members monitoring the parking lot during these times to keep traffic flowing and make sure everyone is safe and can continue on their way with a smile.

4) Safety/Security. After the unfortunate incidents that occurred in Newton last year, many parents were understandably concerned about school security protocols. We have an extensive safety and security system in place, which includes an alarm system with panic hardware and surveillance cameras. We also reviewed all safety and emergency procedures with our staff. Other options are also being considered.

First and foremost on our priority list is creating the best school possible for your children. As you know from last month’s State of the School Address, this has always been and always will be our utmost goal and the guiding principle on which all decisions are based. As we weigh options for improvement and expansion, your opinions are invaluable, and we hope to hear more of your ideas and suggestions in the future. Your commitment and involvement is integral to our mission and your input is always welcome.

We will be making more announcements at the start of the 2013-14 school year. Until then, we hope to see you around campus, on our website and Facebook page and at upcoming school events.

All the best,

Leanne Jorgensen

Head of School

Foothills Montessori School is a private Montessori school serving families in Henderson, Las Vegas and Southern Nevada.

Escape Education’s Death Valley

In a dynamic 2013 Ted Talk, Sir Ken Robinson outlines three ways we can spark an education revolution.


[button url=”” target=”_blank” size=”small” style=”cherry” ]WATCH NOW[/button]

Escape Education’s Death Valley

In a dynamic 2013 Ted Talk, Sir Ken Robinson outlines three ways we can spark an education revolution.


Westward, Ho!

Upper elementary students have spent the last couple months learning about (among many other subjects) Nevada and U.S. history.

In March they visited the Springs Preserve and Nevada History Museum and built wagon train models out of shoeboxes and canvas.


In April they visited the Eldorado Canyon Mine where they explored tunnels, panned for gold and played horseshoes.

They also held a Pioneer Day celebration where students dressed up in traditional outfits and had a blast line dancing, churning butter, quilling, making applesauce, playing pioneer-style outdoor games, making jumping jacks, creating thaumotropes, and more!

While learning about the exciting and action-packed Gold Rush era, students designed Gold Rush “trading cards” and advertisements to lure people out West; published newspapers with typical headlines of the time complete with ads, important events and classifieds section; and built sod house homestead replicas in the back garden, for which they received an authentic certificate of ownership.

Last week Elementary 5 students participated in a “Choose Your Own Adventure” Activity where they learned how to make crucial decisions regarding survival and success. Now they are creating a class book to teach others about this thrilling and challenging time period. Ask your students for more details, and be sure to check out the Elementary 5 and Elementary 6 classroom blogs for some great pictures!

Cadbury the Rabbit

Until one has loved an animal a part of one’s soul remains unawakened. — Anatole France

An FMS Parent has kindly gifted us with a wonderful new addition: a sweet and handsome rabbit named Cadbury. Cadbury is living the dream life in the outdoor classroom, eating lots of carrots and hay and snacking on basil leaves and fresh strawberries.


The students were taught to treat Cadbury with respect and gentleness, and they love to give him soft pets and feed him treats. They are becoming the best of friends!

Many flowers, fruits and vegetables are in full bloom, making it the perfect place for both students and rabbit. The students are also learning about carpenter bees and other insects who have made the garden their home, and we have even spotting a hummingbird’s nest! Hopefully we’ll catch a glimpse of the colorful bird soon.

Elsewhere on the FMS campus, E3 is planting a beautiful backyard garden, E5 is growing herbs such as chives, basil and spearmint in old chinese takeout boxes for an “upcycling” project, and E4 has planted a salsa garden, complete with tomatoes, onions, garlic and cilantro! We sure do love to be outdoors!

See more pictures of Cadbury and the children and the outdoor classroom here!