SHOW AND TELL
Bring a something you use to adapt to the weather. (A bathing suit would be fine.)
The what and why of weather.The value is justice. In our country the first rule is that all people are created equal.
For science we’ll make a tornado in a bottle and a rainbow.
Outside we’ll play figure 8’s, rubber bands, and ball toss.
The songs we’ll be singing are Frosty the Snowman, You Are My Sunshine, Let’s Go Fly a Kite, Singing in the Rain, We Shall Overcome, and It’s Raining, It’s Pouring.
Our art activities are rainsticks, macaroni snowflakes, frosty shapes, and peace doves.
Creative dramatics will find us acting like different kinds of wind, rain, and sunny days with floating clouds.
For body development, we’ll work on strength with push ups, sit ups, leg raises, and squats. For motor development we’ll do motor planning exercises with cotton ball blow, chimp race, blind walking, and hip hop.
COMPETENT KIDS/NEEDY PARENTS
There is a fine line between being a supportive parent and being a “hovercraft”, especially for our preschoolers. Human infants are born helpless. I suspect from an evolution perspective so that we quickly get into the parenting role of being dependable. But then we hang on too long, and even our infants who need to be able to move about for themselves are strapped in, locked down, and spoon-fed. We discover that we rather like having this charming creature dependent on us. The child may struggle for a while, but eventually a symbiosis begins to develop where a needy parent is hindering the child’s competence. It begins to be really obvious when a child who is able to walk is carried into the school. He may feed himself very competently at our table, but dad still dutifully spoon feeds baby food at home. Toddlers who stay dry all day here may come to school in the mornings in a diaper. Mom may come back three times to say goodbye until finally the child is upset and cries. Mom can leave now feeling that her child really does love her and is upset to have her go.
So if you’re a parent who knows that your child exhibits competent behavior at the school but you can’t get them to do it at home, what do you do? Talk about it with us. Start by saying “I know my child gets himself to sleep at the school, but we absolutely can’t get him to sleep at night or to stay asleep. How do you do it?” We love to brag on our kids and to share our techniques. If what we say seems strange, tell us. If your active 4-year-old tells you he can only have a half glass of milk – that’s strange. It’s out of the context that he can only have a half glass at a time, but he can have as many glasses as he wishes. If your child is terribly upset every morning coming to school, let’s talk. She seems to like school. Do you hate going to work or the stress of getting everything together every morning? We can talk about techniques here, things like laying morning things out the night before, talking about what we’re looking forward to today, and eagerly planning the evening.
When we study what hang ups adults have, the first glaring issue happens in early childhood, maybe between the ages 2 and 4. This is where our children are now. Now is our time to bypass that hangup so our children can move unfettered into their elementary years. We have to pay attention to our own blinders and narrow vision and open ourselves up to the possibilities of having no-limit children (a wonderful term from Wayne Dyer in his book What Do You Really Want for Your Children?) When our children’s parents can see their own blind spots just in techniques of child raising, our children are free to become as truly and freely competent as they can be. We love to talk about how to start a happy day, how to be secure in what’s going on, how to get children to eat green peas, and how to go to bed calmly. If we can’t talk right this minute, let’s schedule a time we can be focused on this critical topic.
Martin Luther King Holiday – Reminder for you that we’ll be closed on Monday Jan. 21, in honor of a person who stood up for equality and justice for all people.
Stone Soup – This event is from an old folktale of soldiers returning from the war. They stopped in a village to ask for food, but the villagers were terrified of them and said they had no food. Taking pity on the villagers, the soldiers vowed to help them by preparing a huge pot of “stone soup”. As they heated the pot in the village square, one villager allowed as how he had a few potatoes. Another volunteered some onions. Finally one came forward with enough meat to season the soup. At the end, the whole village had a jolly party with the kind soldiers. We have put a little twist on this folktale and we’ll call it “Stone Snack” For our children, this is an opportunity to share with everyone. On Thursday January 24, please plan to allow your child to bring a handful of something good to go into the big snack bowl for morning snack; raisins, carrots, toasted o’s, are just a few suggestions. Remember not to include nuts.