Our precious little turkeys are very busy learning all about Fall and Thanksgiving. Our Pre-K class has been studying Native Americans and Pilgrims, as well as using their reading and math skills to make pumpkin pie in a cup, and exploring all things corn! Our younger classes have created turkeys, had mini Thanksgiving feasts, and read lots of wonderful Thanksgiving books. As a school we have created our “Thankful Tree” in the hallway by listing so many things for which we are grateful.
We wish all of our families a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. We are grateful for YOU!
Our oldest two classes took on a special project this morning. They took cards they had made to bless the veterans at The Springs Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.
This opportunity for the children to demonstrate acts of appreciation is something that makes our school very special. We love that we are in such close proximity to a nursing home so that we can learn how to bless the residents there.
We are having a blast with science this year. Not only do the teachers provide fun and engaging weekly science experiments with the children; this year we’ve added in visits with “Scientist Suzi.” Last Friday Scientist Suzi talked about density with the children and we experimented density by both layering liquids as well as trying out solid objects in water.
Just as it is important for children to have concrete “play” social experiences so that they can process and practice real world interactions, it is important for them to play with science as well. They need opportunities to make predictions and then test their predictions. Sink and float games are a perfect way to practice this concept. While it will be many years later before they truly understand density and mass distribution, simply making guesses and “playing” in their preschool years will give them concrete experiences to reference when they engage in advanced learning later on in their lives.
Try counting while touching your nose with alternating hands. Count again while standing on one leg. Try it one more time while reaching across to touch your opposite toes.
In Mrs. Roxanne’s class the kids do this because it’s fun. What they don’t know is that activities that work on crossing the midline actually help them with reading among other things! In order to eventually become a strong reader, our eyes track across the midline as we read. If we have not practiced motor skills that cross the midline it will make it much more difficult to become successful readers.
Standing on one leg is an important balance activity that is a precursor to more advanced gross motor activities such as galloping, skipping, and stair negotiation.
You’ll see Mrs. Roxanne do a lot of these activities in her class and much more. To learn more about our wonderful Mrs. Roxanne, check out the latest podcast episode:
I am having so much fun getting to interview our teachers for our podcasts. Last week I met with the wonderful Mrs. Anna and today I had the pleasure of chatting with our dear Mrs. Crystal. It is always fun to learn more about our staff aside from just what we see here at school. I hope you enjoy learning about them as much as I have!
We are so excited to have some cooler weather! This change in temperature has sparked a spontaneous sense of joy. In celebration, Mrs. Jen’s class enjoyed a picnic lunch today outside. One of the reasons we love play-based learning is that the teachers have the freedom to capitalize on teachable moments, and changing their activity plan on the fly in order to make the most of fun experiences is just one way they can do that. These kids did not just go eat outside today. They experienced the joy of a gentle breeze and sunshine while working on social skills in a unique setting. They learned that even though the location had changed, we still must use manners like staying at the table to eat our food, and not grabbing our neighbor’s food!
After lunch you won’t find children twiddling their thumbs waiting for the next activity. Instead, they take charge of their own agenda! Once they finish their lunch, they clean up their spot by throwing away trash and putting away their lunchbox. Then they visit the “Fun Tubs” center where they have free reign of what activity they will do. The Tubs are open ended, and the true beauty of it is watching the games that the children create on their own. Some might be more mathematically minded by lining items up in a pattern, others are socially oriented and create a small village where the objects interact, while other children may develop a complicated game involving dice, specific moves, and a goal.
It is beautiful to watch play-based learning in action!