From the Desk of Roy & Kathy – December

November was a fun month.  Barros chess night was great fun for Mr. Roy”s chess club.  There was plenty of pizza chess and Good Company for everyone.  Look for Mr. Roy to host another chess night in January.  The Thanksgiving feast was a big success.  The children worked hard to prepare for this event with plenty of art cooking and learning about Thanksgiving.  A big thanks to you parents for all the wonderful food and help to make this all possible.


We will be holding the second annual cookie exchange December 12th at 5:30 – 6:00pm  Please bring in three dozen cookies.  Two will be to share and one left to take home.  Cave Creek Montessori will provide hot chocolate and coffee.  This was so much fun last year and we expect the same.



We are very proud of the music program at Cave Creek Montessori.  Mr. Jason & the children will be giving a winter program performance for all to enjoy on the morning of December 18.  Please check with your child’s teacher for exact times. This is a great time to learn more about music at Cave Creek Montessori and see the children perform.


This year we are supporting the Youth Assistance Foundation to provide at risk children, homeless children, & military families with presents for Christmas.  Please participate by bringing in a new unwrapped toy. The YAF toy drive has provided thousands of toys for children each year throughout Maricopa County.  With your help we can make Christmas day bright for many more children.


We wish everyone a save and happy holiday season.

Good nutrition is a vital part of introducing your child to a healthy lifestyle.

Since healthy eating habits are established early in life, it is important to introduce young children to nutrition and healthy foods at snack times as well as at family meals. At Cave Creek Montessori our standards include the following guidelines for snacks provided by parents for their child’s class.

The snacks that children get accustomed to eating at school are also part of the patterns for nutrition your child will follow for the rest of their life.  An occasional dessert is fine once in awhile but should not be the norm or the replacement of a healthy snack. Rather it should be a small portion introduced as a “treat” complimenting a meal or a special occasion.

We strongly recommend when it is your child’s day to bring in snacks for the class a healthy snack is provided.  We recognize preschoolers are frequently picky eaters and can be very vocal about their preferences. These occurances can become power plays that a parent should quickly recognize and avoid. In these situations we recommend keeping a list of wholesome snacks from which your child can choose.

Preschool-age children should be eating nutritional foods that include fresh vegetables & fruits; nonfat or low-fat dairy products such as milk, yogurt and cheese (we recommend organic milk); lean meats such as chicken, turkey, fish, and lean hamburger; whole-grain cereals and bread. As mentioned we strongly recommend parents provide organic low-fat milk for the class. Additionally, portion sizes for these ages should be less than adult size portions.

Easy examples of snacks that have proved popular with the kids as well as rating high in nutritional value include:

*Various bite-size veggies such as cherry tomatoes, baby carrots, broccoli or cauliflower flowerets served with a humus or yogurt dip

*Fresh fruit such as sectioned apples or oranges, cherries and of course bite-size squares of watermelon in summertime. Feta cheese is always a great compliment!

*Whole grain crackers or whole-grain bread served with cream cheese or cheese squares 

For other healthy snack ideas Google provides numerous sites for organic snacks as well as pre-school snack recipes (see meatball recipe below).  We recognize parents with young children have very busy schedules and we appreciate the extra time and effort required in the preparation of any wholesome snack. Please check with your child’s teacher if we can be of assistance on healthy snack options.

Roy Catalo

Baked Turkey Quinoa Meatballs

These meatballs are packed full of delicious quinoa, spinach, red onion and turkey. They can be made in under five minutes and baked in just under 30 minutes. You're not going to believe how much flavor and nutrition they pack.

Baked turkey quinoa meatballs  Yield about 50 bite–sized meatballs


  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa, cooled
  • 1/3 cup chopped spinach
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and cover a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat.
  2. In a bowl of an electric mixer add ground turkey, quinoa, spinach, red onion, garlic, Sriracha, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper, panko breadcrumbs and egg. Mix on low till combined.
  3. Roll into 1 to 1-1/2 inch balls and add to prepared baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes until firm and cooked throughout.


From The Desk of Roy & Kathy – November

 Police Day Yoga Classes

Pumkin Patch Day Pizza Days

We welcome the fall weather & the children have been so happy playing and having fun out doors! The field trip to the pumpkin patch was a huge hit and a big thank you to all the parents who volunteered to make this event possible. The pictures above show fun days in October: children enjoying the start of yoga classes, held a Fire Safety Day, Phoenix Police Day, and the children are as always enjoying their pizza Fridays.

Parent/Child Yoga Class

Ms. Shelley will be inviting parents to join their child for yoga on November 6.  Please check your class newsletter for times.

Thanksgiving Feast

On November 26 every class will be having a Thanksgiving feast. Please leave lunch boxes home and be sure to sign up to bring a dish for your child to share in class.

Kindergarten Chess

The kindergarten chess club is on its way.  This group is very excited about learn to play chess!  Mr. Roy is holding the first chess night November 19 @ 6:00 p.m. at Barros Pizza on Tatum and Dynamite.  So come have dinner and enjoy watching your children having fun playing chess & eating pizza with their friends.

New P.E. Class

Cave Creek Montessori will begin including a new Physical Education class on Monday morning for all children (Toddlers, Preschool, Kindergarten). We have contracted with Team Impact to run this program at no additional cost to parents. Here is a link to watch a short video of the type of things your child will be learning:

Wishing for our CCM family’s a safe and happy holiday!!

"Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving" W.T. Purkise.

Roy & Kathy: October News

October is a wonderful time in Arizona, bringing beautiful weather to play and garden.  At Cave Creek Montessori we have many exciting activities to announce.

October 9  5:30-7:30  Cave Creek Montessori will be hosting our first Chamber of Commerce mixer.   We are proud to support our chamber!  This is a adult only event!  Parents are welcome to come enjoy a mixer with other local businesses in the area.  We will have finger foods, music and wine.

October 14-18 Parent teacher conferences are held.  This is a very important time for parents to understand what their children are learning and the direction in which they will be moving.  We strongly encourage all parents to sign up.  If you do not see a time that meets your needs, please let us know.

October 31 The children will be having a Halloween party.  Please refer to your class newsletter.  This is by far one of the children's favorite day here at Cave Creek Montessori. 

After eight years of running the after school program, we are sad to say goodbye to Ms. Christina!  We wish her all the best in her next chapter she has accepted a position as a visual merchandiser.  We are happy to have Ms. Chelsea accept this position!

This month's topic is movement. Please be sure to read the article online.  As always, we value the families at CCM!  Our doors are always open!

Roy and Kathy: September News

August was full of joyful learning and play! The staff has enjoyed getting to know our new students and parents and reconnecting with our wonderful returning families. The adjustment to class starting at 8:30 a.m. has been a little challenging. However, parents and staff are on track now, and the feedback we’ve received has been mostly positive.

Extra-curricular Classes Begin in September
Mandarin will be on Monday, Spanish on Tuesday and/or Thursday, yoga (when the weather cools a bit) on Wednesday, and music on Friday. Please check with your child’s teacher for scheduled times.

Two important Reminders:
1. It is still very hot and the sun is intense! Please apply sun block to your child before coming to school.
2. Please sign your child in and out of school. You (the parent or guardian) must do this. Children may NOT write on the document. This is state law!

Peace Day Celebration – Wednesday, September 18
Peace Day falls on a Saturday this year, so we decided to celebrate at school on Wednesday.

In honor of Peace Day, the children will do a community project this month to remind our community about the importance of living in a peaceful world. They will learn about great advocates for peace and will work on art projects and learn a peace song.

Peace Day Festivities, 9:30 a.m.
On the morning of the 18th, parents are welcome to participate with the children in the Peace Day festivities. At 9:30 a.m. everyone will sing “Light a Candle for Peace”. Over 85,000 children attending Montessori schools all over the world, from the Netherlands to the Virgin Islands, will be singing this song. Be sure to mark your calendar!

Please sign up for a dish in your child’s classroom. A Cave Creek Montessori tradition for the last 15 years, Potluck Night for Peace is a super fun evening, not to mention great food!

Parent Education Night – September 10th, 5:30 p.m.
This is your opportunity for you to learn more about Montessori! Your child’s teacher will go over Montessori material, philosophy and schedules. Childcare (RSVP required) is available for $3 per child. We encourage all toddler parents to attend education night. There is no presentation in the toddler room, but toddler parents are welcome in any of the classrooms.

We will be celebrating Dr. Maria Montessori’s birthday on Tuesday, September the 3rd. The children will be learning about this brilliant lady and how she loved and educated children all over the world. We strive to fulfill her vision for education of the young child and her ambition for creating world in which people live in peace!

Open Door Policy
Lastly, our doors are ALWAYS open! One of the most rewarding aspects of working with children is collaborating with you, their parents! When parents and educators share their observations and thoughts, it benefits the child and facilitates consistency

Montessori in the Home

Many parents over the years have come to me with the notion that it would be wonderful to provide their children with Montessori materials, including the movable alphabet, sand paper letter and the addition strip board. This is a well-intentioned idea but not usually in the best interest of their children’s Montessori journey.

So we are back to the question of how you, as a parent, can support this wonderful journey your child is on, when you’re at home. So often we are so busy in our own daily routines that the obvious goes unseen or seems too time consuming. The reality is with repetition your child will be doing things independently, gaining skills, and ultimately helping with household duties.

So how do we start? Go through your home environment, asking yourself how your child could be included in meaningful activities. Give your child the ability to do what they can. Include the child in your work.

Here are some examples. In the kitchen, have a low cabinet where there are items for the child to set the table, get a drink, and clean up a mess. Have the child work along side you in the preparation of a meal. This task can significantly aid in developing small motors skills in preparation for writing, concentration, grace and courtesy, language and math skills in measuring. But above all, this gives a sense of accomplishment and worth.

Television and electronic games have become today’s entertainment and even a babysitter for the young child. This deprives a child of the opportunity to work with the hand and mind. The hand is an extension of the mind and utilizes the child’s natural development through the use of the senses. Television and computers at a young age should be monitored and limited.

Outings are opportunities to learn about our society and the world. A simple trip to the grocery store can provide the child with self-control, language, manners, math, sensorial stimulation, nutritional lessons and so much more. Almost any outing can be turned into a fun field trip for the young child and holds endless possibilities for learning.

In the home environment, when possible, design furnishings at the child’s height. Children approach work very differently than adults. They welcome the chance to work side by side with the adult, and this will give them the best chance for success.

Above all, children are busy watching and listening to the adults in their lives. Providing role models of love and kindness is “Montessori in the home”!

Please always feel free to contact me should you have any questions or are in need of some advice!

Welcome to the CCM 2013-2014 School Year!

Our staff is very excited to welcome new and returning students and parents to the 2013-2014 Cave Creek Montessori school year!

Summer Program

The children had a great summer. Thanks to all the parents for your help and support. We all had a blast!

New Students

Our first step towards making sure students succeed here at Cave Creek Montessori is by helping them make friends and feel comfortable. The initial few days can be exciting yet challenging for both parents and children. If your child has separation anxiety, it will subside as soon as friendships form. This process will last only a week or two. You can help by introducing your child to teachers and peers. The teachers will also help your child find some “mentor” friends.

How Parents Can Help

-Be sure to check your child’s folder daily

-Share your excitement about school with your children (i.e. friends they meet, or things they have learned)

-To help ease separation anxiety, please leave as quickly as possible and/or use our drop off service.

-Call the office at anytime to check on your child; it is never an inconvenience

-Make play days outside of school (exchange telephone numbers with other parents)

-Have your child well prepared for school (i.e. proper clothing, lunch, snack, show & tell)

Important Safety Rules

-Drive very slowly in the parking lots

-Be sure the gates are closed upon entering/exiting the school

-Sign in and out with your full name (adults only please)

-Take all clothes/linens home on Fridays for washing and return on Mondays

-When you are present at the school, please understand your child and siblings are your responsibility. Please make sure they are following the rules (i.e. no running inside, jumping on tables, throwing things)

Toddler Class

We are very pleased to announce Ms. Samantha Salerno completed her first of two summers of American Montessori Society certification training. She is very excited to be back in the classroom and will be implementing many new ideas. Mrs. Uma will be joining her in the Toddler Room and sharing teacher responsibilities this year. Mrs. Uma did a great job this summer as the toddler teacher, and with her eight years working at CCM, she’ll bring stability and enthusiasm.

Our goal in the toddler classroom is the help the children with potty training, improve verbal skills, develop large motor skills, & gain academic & social skills. The ultimate goal with toddlers at CCM is to facilitate a smooth transition into the 3 – 6 year old classrooms. We are looking for a great year with our toddlers.

Mandarin Chinese/Spanish/Yoga/Music/Chess

We will be starting with our extracurricular classes the week of Monday September 9, 2013. Mr. Adam will also be offering semi-private Chinese classes twice per week for ½ hour classes for a fee of $80.00 per month. The classes will consist of 2-4 children and be held on Tuesdays & Thursdays from 3:30pm – 4:00pm. Mr. Jason also plans on offering private guitar or keyboard lessons here at CCM after 3:30 pm for an additional fee.

NEW!!! Sports & Arts Program

Beginning the week of September 9, we will launch our new Sports & Arts program. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we will have Sports Camp from 3:45pm till 4:30pm, and on Mondays and Wednesdays, we will have an Open Art Studio, also from 3:45pm till 4:30pm. These activities will supplement the other activities we currently offer during our afterschool hours.

Thank you for choosing Cave Creek Montessori for your child. Please feel free to contact us anytime and share your ideas. We look forward to partnering with you to make this year super special for your child!

Roy & Kathy Catalo


Chess Class

Music Class

Spanish Class

What Parents Say

Fantastic school ! If you want to get your kids way ahead , this is where you need to go!

— Submitted by a parent

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