Parents can expect positive changes at Bristow Montessori School, including gourmet catered lunches and a new playground installation.
Starting in February, Twisted Cork Grille will now be catering lunches for the Montessori-based daycare, pre-K and primary school in Bristow. Twisted Cork is the new American restaurant within Bristow Commons that also offers some farm-to-table dishes.
Bristow Montessori parents will have the opportunity to purchase a meal for their children or have them bring their lunches. The school will continue to provide children with two ample snacks thoughout the day.
Food catered by Twisted Cork will be delivered hot to Bristow Montessori and served in its classrooms. All of the dishes are right off Twisted Cork’s restaurant menu and are of restaurant quality.
Bristow Montessori Head of School Anita Ercole believes the meals are a step above the usual school lunch program.
“It is a very nice option. They are doing it specifically for us, which makes it a very custom program,” Ercole said.
The menu eschews usual kid foods for home-style comfort foods. Ercole is proud that the food is not shipped in from an outside vendor.
“We’re excited for our students. In Montessori we teach them about plant cycles,” Ercole explained. “To offer them a lunch program of primarily fresh or locally grown food, it reflects the Montessori culture.”
Teachers and staff at Bristow Montessori are also excited about the school’s new playground structure that was completed this January. It includes a slide, climbing wall and features designed for physical activity and imaginative play.
The entire playground has also been outfitted with safe, spongy, all-weather turf. The new turf will allow the school to use the playground more frequently, and the playground’s colors reflect the natural environment.
Ercole believes the new slide will enhance the recess experience at Bristow Montessori, allowing the students one more way to have fun, get exercise and blow off steam. Parents can rest assured that teachers monitor children on the playground and structure.
One the first day of its opening, children were excited to try the new slide. They slid, wearing big smiles and enjoyed climbing up and down while laughing and chatting with their friends.
Ercole feels the outdoor experience is an important aspect of the Montessori philosophy. She encourages her teachers to plan lessons in which the children interact with nature.
“Montessori is about connecting children to the environment,” said Ercole. “They spend a lot of time working with animals, working with plants and being exposed to the outside."
The class garden is also ideal for teaching the natural sciences. “Children will go outside and sketch plants they see in the environment, or uproot them, and take them in and draw the roots.”
All Montessori learning is experience based. The curriculum includes scientific experiments designed for young children. For instance, teachers used a frozen water balloon in water to teach them about glaciers.
While many schools have come to realize the benefits of incorporating Montessori elements, Ercole hopes parents will consider the powerful impact of a complete Montessori experience at Bristow Montessori School.
Bristow Montessori School is located at 9050 Devlin Road in Bristow Commons. Their phone number is 703-468-1191 They are now enrolling for this year and next. Call ahead for a tour.
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