Montessori Center School students gathered to celebrate world cultures and peace as part of United Nations Day Friday, Oct. 23, 2015, with the most colorful traditions at MCS, where the children are greeted by flags of many countries displayed all around the perimeter of the beautiful garden campus.
The students along with staff came to school dressed in traditional outfits, some of which were worn by their own ancestors. Toddlers to sixth graders joined hands and sang songs of peace and danced together to world rhythms.
The celebration lasted much of the morning with a special presentation featuring a lively and interactive capoeira performance put on by Brasil Arts.
The day also included a talk by MCS alumnus, Emma Read, an active member in 2020 A Year Without War, which is a local nonprofit group.
Recently, Read and others were invited by the U.N. to participate in its Sept. 21 International Day of Peace program, and MCS Upper Elementary students were captivated to hear her tell about her experience at the UN and inspired to learn about her personal call to action.
After the presentation, the U.N. Day festivities continued in the Elementary classrooms well into the afternoon, culminating with an international potluck luncheon featuring delicious offerings from all over the globe. Families enjoyed taste traveling from continent to continent sampling a wide variety of dishes.
MCS Upper Elementary Teacher Loric Box said, "The Montessori philosophy starts with a promise of encouraging cross-cultural understanding by focusing on common human needs across the world. At MCS we support independence, encourage freedom within limits and have respect for the child's natural development. The U.N. celebration very much honors the tradition of peace education, which was so important to Dr. Montessori."
The day was a huge success with the ideas of peace, global community and understanding alive and well at Montessori Center School.
Montessori Center School, located on Fairview Avenue in Goleta, has provided students ages 18 months through 12 years old with creative and compelling education in a supportive, nurturing environment since 1965.
MCS, in its 50th year, implements the internationally renowned Montessori method of teaching and works to ensure that the school flourishes for today's children and for generations to come.