What a beautiful way to end the year, by celebrating Jesus and the gift he is in our lives. We began our day with a visit to the church's food pantry. It is a special lesson to learn at an early age how important it is to give to those less fortunate than ourselves. The children helped me wheel the donations down, then sorted, and filled the shelves with what they brought. It was sweet to see them so interested in helping others.
We returned to the classroom for some play time. The children are really enjoying cooking in the kitchen, sharing "meals" together, and blowing out birthday candles.
Others enjoyed playing with baby's, reading books, and checking out a few new games found on our shelves today.
Our party was another success. Thank you to all the parents who sent in food, crafts, and the music. The children enjoyed everything from the pizza lunch to the balloon release, to the cupcake decorating.
It's hard to believe this is my last blog post. I have been dreading this day for weeks. Saying goodbye is bittersweet. I have truly loved teaching your children and seen so much growth in them. I am humbled by the lovely video, sweet words, and generous gifts. I am going to miss you all but I will take a little piece of each of you with me to Dallas. You have all made my life richer and I will keep you in my prayers. God Bless!
We were at it again, playing with the babies and serving up lots of birthday treats. We even took a little break from the classroom to dress up and act out the nativity story. Everyone chose their own costume and posed for a few pictures.
These pictures were so cute I had to share them all. I love how the costumes don't always cooperate.
Meanwhile, back in the classroom...
The highlight of our day was a mini experiment Ms. Rebecca and I call, "Diaper Dissections". We presented the children with a diaper, cup of water, pipette, and the freedom to put as much water into the diaper as it would hold. The pipettes didn't last too long before the boys and girls were pouring water into their diapers. And when the diapers could still hold more liquid, we used a pitcher to add water until the diaper was full. Then we ripped open the diapers and checked out the amazing silica inside that absorbed all the liquid. It is a really fun substance to play with, almost snow like. We added the silica from their diapers to the sensory bin and headed outside to play. The giggles were the best part of the experience. The children loved the cool, gooey feeling between their fingers.
Next Wednesday is our last class day before Christmas break and we will be having a wonderful birthday celebration for Baby Jesus. Lunch will be provided. Party starts at noon and we hope you will all join us.
Wow! I can't even begin to express the amazing growth I have seen in this class. Today the dramatic play was alive and well. The children were engaged and communicating with one another like I haven't seen with this group before. I had to call Mrs. Kunkle in to see. The conversations with one another were precious and watching the kids play with the props and immerse themselves in another world was inspiring. Some took on the role of mommy or daddy while others were bakers and cake decorators. If you are looking for Christmas ideas anything that inspires this imaginative play will be a big hit.
We also enjoyed some fun fine motor work on the trays.
We also painted birthday cakes for Jesus. And added special royal sprinkles for our new born King!
Keeping with the theme of babies, I thought it would be fun to have a baby food tasting. To my surprise the boys and girls were really into it. We tried carrots, sweet potato, applesauce, blueberries, and a combo of pineapple, pear, and avocado. As you can imagine the fruits were a hit and not so much with the vegetables.
I had a story and play dough time planned for the end of the day but the children were drawn back into more dramatic play so we went with it.
"Cupcakes are ready! Hot!"
"Blow the candles."
"The cupcakes fell on the floor. Awe!"
"I can cut the cake."
"It's the baby's birthday."
"Beep! Cake's ready."
"Look out this is hot."
"Can I try the oven this time?"
We will continue with our play on Friday and Ms. Rebecca will be joining us again. We will also engage in a really fun exploration as we dissect diapers to see what is inside them and how much liquid they can hold!
The Owls enjoyed their time with Ms. Rebecca today. We played in the kitchen baking cookies, wrapped gifts, and read stories together. The children are really enjoying the dramatic play area. They are beginning to exercise their imaginations and have fun with pretending vs. just playing with the toys offered. The other day they thought I was crazy when I exclaimed that the cookies they served me were hot and I blew on them and bounced them from one hand to the other. They knew the cookies were not real. At first they thought I was just funny but after a while they too were pretending the cookies were hot. At this early stage of role play they need to be shown how to pretend the toys are real and to make a story up with them. Feel free to have a tea party at home with your child and model how to pretend.
We worked on trees today for art. First we painted one. Then we made one and ate it.
We concluded our day with a little water transfer.
Next week we will focus on babies and birthdays. There will be birthday cakes and cupcakes in the kitchen, babies to wash and diaper in the sensory tub, and many other surprises. See you next Wednesday!
We had so much fun wrapping presents today. It is a simple thing that most of us don't realize it so exciting for a child to participate in. We had a pile of blocks, wrapping paper squares, bows, and rolls of tape available to work with. Even thought everyone knew there was a block inside the package each child that ripped open the paper was thrilled. Many were wrapping and gifting all morning. And don't get me started at how much fun the tape roll was!
We also enjoyed several fine motor tray activities as well.
During art we painted pine cones to look like decorated Christmas trees.
We finished our morning with some play dough fun. Many of us were making play dough cookies or pizzas. It is really exciting to watch as their little imaginations are developing and expressing themselves through play.
Ms. Rebecca will be visiting with us on Friday and we look forward to welcoming her. Hope you all stay warm and dry. See you Friday!
The bakery shop was a huge success today. It was a challenge to focus on anything else. The boys and girls loved selling their cookies, pretending they were hot, and taking turns at the cash register. Every chance they got they made there way back to that corner and picked up right were they left off. It is exciting to see them so engaged and cooperating with one another. The language being exchanged with each other is the most exciting thing to listen in on.
"Cookie sale! Cookie sale!"
"Cookies hot! I burnt my fingers."
"My baby wants a cookie."
"Ding! Cookies done, hot!"
"I buyed a cookie for mommy."
"Me want cookie."
"I have cupcakes!"
"Look at the sprinkles, yummy in my tummy!"
Yes pretending to be bakers is one thing but decorating your own homemade gingerbread men is more exciting! Not to mention delicious.
We also took a little time to make some very special ornaments that once dry will go home for your family trees.
Next week we will be wrapping up presents in Santa's Workshop as well as trimming our mini Christmas tree. Have a blessed weekend and we will see you all on Wednesday.
We are back from our Thanksgiving holiday and ready to play. We were all so excited to see each other this morning. The children enjoyed exploring several different cookie themed learning games as well as having our kitchen area transformed into Santa's Cookie Shop. As the children have grown more comfortable with each other and their play styles are beginning to change it is time to introduce more dramatic play. This role play is wonderful in helping develop social skills, language skills, and personal boundaries.
Overheard while playing in the cookie shop...
"Hey, who wants to buy my cookies?"
"This one has sprinkles."
"Here's your cookie, now pay me."
"I'm going to sit in the chair and sell these cupcakes."
"Cookies for sale, cookies for sale!"
"Now I need to bake them."
"Use mittens, they are hot."
"I decorated with sprinkles and icing."
During our story time this morning we decided to have a cookie tasting. We tried three different types of cookies and then voted and recorded our favorites. Interactive math involving cookies is always a hit!
We also enjoyed some painting and scissor work as well. The children are making good strides in their scissor work. The awkward positions are slowly coming around to proper holds and the children's interest in scissor work is increasing because they are finding more success.
We will continue the fun on Friday. Wear your orange school t-shirts as it is the first Friday of December! This year is flying by!
Another busy day in the books! We popped our own popcorn and made kernels dance.
We all enjoyed a little science experiment. We made kernels dance. It is a simple process and most of the materials are readily available at home. Give it a try together as a family.
YOU WILL NEED:
After playing with kernels we just had to pop some!
I will be out of town next week but wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving. Please remember to wear a brown or orange t-shirt next Friday for the feast. We are going as turkeys.
Our day was full of hands on learning!
I put out these cool pop blocks and some children found these really engaging. They spent a good chunk of the morning building!
During our story time we learned a fun little song about popcorn. We used scarves to sing with.
It goes like this... (tune of Are You Sleeping)
"Popcorn kernels, Popcorn kernels," (scarf waves over head)
"In the pot, In the pot," (scrunch scarf into your fist)
"Shake them, Shake them, Shake them, Shake them, Shake them, Shake them, (shake fists)
"Til they POP! Till they POP!" (toss scarf up over head and catch it)
As you can imagine we did it over and over and over again.
We made beautiful "stained glass" artwork.
Our favorite activity of the day was plucking corn kernels off of indian corn. We were engrossed in this process. Some used their fingers to accomplish the task while others favored tweezers. The children were focused on pinching the tiny kernels and pulling them from the cobs. One friend was so determined he stayed at the table until his cob was cleaned! What an amazing fine motor activity.
Overheard while working...
"These are like teeth!"
"I'm squeezing hard."
"I did it!"
"I pulled one out!"
"Whoa, it flied across the table!"
"I did two at the same time!"
"What is this thing called?"
"I need help!"
"Look, I did it with my finger!"
Friday we will be popping our own popcorn and tasting it.
Just a reminder I will not be in class next week so the blog will update Friday and then not again until after Thanksgiving.
We worked on naming shapes all around our environment today. The children noticed that the crackers we had for snack today were rectangles and when we broke them in half they were squares. We saw circle tunnels on the playground and triangle patterns on one of our friends lunch boxes.
During our story time, Little Mouse joined us and read Mouse Shapes to us. We were so excited after hearing the story we decided to make our very own mouse shape necklace by lacing a variety of shaped buttons. This was a challenge for some but everyone really stuck to it and the necklaces are precious. What a great shape recognition and fine motor activity all rolled into one.
The boys and girls also enjoyed some watercolor painting.
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. Hopefully the weather will be a bit more seasonal next week. We will be learning all about popcorn and our five senses. Should be a lot of fun! See you then!
Here you will find little snippets of our days together. When my children were in preschool and would come home I would always ask, "So, what did you do today?". All they ever said was, "Played." That didn't tell me much. I hope this blog will be a place to share what we have done and help you ask more directed questions of your child. You will see first hand just what we do after you kiss your little one goodbye in the morning. It will also be a great place to visit and see just how much your child has grown and learned throughout the year.