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SHOW AND TELL

Bring a wish for our star bright

Topic: Astronomy

Learn about the immensity of the universe

The value we’ll be studying is humility, which means to be not proud in mind and spirit.

For science, we’ll perform experiments to help us understand how light works.

Outside, we’ll make a sundial.

The songs we’ll be singing are Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, It’s a Small World, When You Wish Upon a Star, This Old Man, and Catch a Falling Star.

For creative dramatics, we’ll tell our own stories about space.

Our art activities will be space goo, moonscapes, astronaut helmets, star bright wands, and rocket ships.

For motor development we’ll work on strength with sit-ups, chin-ups, and wheelbar-rows. For postural response, we’ll be playing body ball, clapping rhythms, and bounce a ball around the circle.

TO BE OR TO HAVE?

This commentary is from Linda Weither of the Boston Globe. She writes: “I was eating lunch with a friend at a restaurant. Seated next to us were two boys about 10 or 11 and their dads, who were deep in conversation. The boys were searching for a topic. “What are you going to have when you grow up?” one finally asked. And they were off and running.

That odd substitution of a single word – “have” for “do” or “be” – shocked me into wondering. When did that original question lose its hold upon our children’s imaginations? When did youngsters stop seeing the future as an arena for action and begin to see adulthood as an opportunity to shop? When did their dreams shrink so small? I don’t know when, but I think I know why. The average child is exposed to about 10,000 well-made television commercials a year, and each one of them is a little sermon, saying: “What you have isn’t good enough. You need to buy something to make you happy.” It’s naive to think this repetition doesn’t powerfully shape our children’s values.

Oh, we understand that the underlying purpose of all advertising is to create a dissatisfaction with our lives and a craving for a succession of compensating products. What’s just seeping into consciousness is the way advertising has begun to infiltrate and affect every aspect of contemporary life.

Brian Swimme, in his book The Hidden Heart of the Cosmos believes that advertising is now fulfilling the initiatory function that earlier cultures handed over to shamans and priests. For 300,000 years, human beings created myths to make sense of their place in the universe, stories they passed on to their children to give them an idea of their purpose on earth. Today, education and religion are supposed to fill that role, but how much impact can teachers or ministers have when the average high school graduate has spent more time watching ads than going to high school itself, when each one of those 175,000 bits of propaganda is saying: “The purpose of your life is to work at jobs to earn money to get stuff.”

We would never give any organized religion that kind of access to our children’s minds. If any such messages were constantly flashed in our faces, it would be recognized and denounced as indoctrination. Advertising, somehow, is merely business as usual. Seen as neutral, it soon becomes invisible.

Not parents, but “the advertisement is our culture’s primary vehicle for providing our children with their personal cosmologies,” Swimme writes. “As this awful fact sinks into awareness, the first healthy response is one of denial. It is just too horrible to think that we live in a culture that has replaced authentic spiritual development with the advertisement’s crass materialism.” In fact, what’s so horrible is that once we acknowledge the power ads have to shape our children’s view of the world, we’re left with the uneasy feeling that we really ought to do something about this seductress in our midst, whose images invite us, entertain us and distract us 24 hours a day. Who or what can replace her?”

This is a powerful warning. At the school, we listen in horror as our children tell us about having dinner in front of the television, of spending most of Saturday watching videos, and of what they’re going to get. Determine to turn off the TV, and take back control of your children’s minds.

      Coming Up

Martin Luther King Holiday – Please notice that the school will be closed on Monday, Jan. 15, in honor of the man who refused to tolerate the status quo any longer.

Stone Snack Day – On the order of “being prepared”, on Thursday, January 25, we’ll be bringing a snack ingredient to share the old story of soldiers returning from the war. As they came into the village, they asked for food. When the terrified villagers claimed they had no food, the soldiers took pity and volunteered to provide a grand soup dinner for everyone. They set up a huge pot and filled it with water to cook a large stone. One by one, the villagers offered some carrots, a few potatoes, even a bit of meat. Eventually, there was indeed a fine dinner for the whole village. We’ll put a spin on this story; each child is asked to bring in item to contribute to the snack bowl. You might want to think ahead what your child would want to bring to share on that day.

Inspection – We are proud to announce that during a recent unannounced inspection we passed 100%.

All pre-schools are regulated by Family Protective Services; they make inspections to make sure we are in compliance with state policy. The following were reviewed and or evaluated:

Health and Safety Audit Checklist was completed during the inspection

All items listed under Risk to children check box on were evaluated.

Background checks were compared from employee names on the People List from CLASS.

Ratio, supervision, physical facilities and playground areas were evaluated.

 

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