SHOW AND TELL

Bring a small piece of “junk” for our junk sculptures. (Consider bolts or washers, empty thread spools scraps of cloth,

feathers, buttons, etc.)

 

Topic: Pioneers

About life 200 years ago

The value is self-reliance, which means to have confidence in your own ability and in your own judgment.

For cooking, we’ll learn how to make butter and applesauce.

Outside we’ll play outdoor games and learn some indoor games.

The songs we’ll be singing are Clementine, She’ll Be Coming Round the Mountain, Skip to My Lou, Michael Finnegan, What a Beautiful Morning, and Oh, Susanna.

For creative dramatics we’ll play pioneer homestead and grandmother’s trunk.

Our art activities are candles, junk sculpture, yarn dolls, glass bowls, covered wagons, and button on a string.

For motor development, we’ll work on coordination with balance exercises, cartwheels, and back rolls. For postural response we’ll do ball pass, kick the pin, balance beam obstacle course, and walk the ball.

ps of cloth, feathers, buttons, etc.)

 

 

HIGHER ORDER THINKING SKILLS

When we set up progress sheets for our children so that we could monitor the children as they move from infants through toddlerhood and then into the primary years, it became apparent that motor development, social skills, history, learning styles, and creativity were all categories we wanted in the forefront and not get overlooked. As we refined what we wanted for our children, an interesting item appeared in the social skills category. The tag line read “sense of fairness” and under that were two categories: one for self and another for others.

As we considered the ramifications of “is this a valid curriculum item”, “what would Dr. Montessori say”, and “what’s the importance for a child to learn fairness, first for herself, and then for others”, we had to define fairness for ourselves. In the curriculum analysis, at least that this point, is an item for accuracy. Another word for that is honesty. It comes before fairness because a part of fairness is being honest.

Honesty is telling the facts as they happened, and telling all the facts. Most of us learn at an early age to leave out the part that puts us in a bad light. “He hit me” is the story that’s told. The part that’s left out is that she pinched first or called a name. “She took my pencil” is the shortened version from, of course, it was her pencil in the first place. Our highly verbal children learn quickly to change terminology to put a different slant on the story. “Took” becomes “borrowed” and a little pushing match becomes a dramatic, tearful story.

As adults, we have a big part of the honest responsibility in conflicts with children. If we’re threatening or emotional in a situation, a child will lie to defend himself. If we punish instead of discipline, a child will avoid full accuracy in analyzing what happened. We work on accuracy and thought processes with discussions on circle like “Which comes first, the push or the hit?”

So then we go to what’s fair. Fair is not equal. There’s also a lot of inaccuracy in analyzing “fair”. An older child gets to stay up later. The other team won. Johnny didn’t get in trouble when he did that. Marianne gets to use her lovey at naptime. At the school, every one gets what they need, not necessarily what they want. Everyone follows the same rules – all the same rules. Everyone is given the same respect as everyone else.

When we come to the highest level of accepting accountability of not only what is fair for ourselves but also what is fair for our friend, it becomes a very high-order thinking level. Our country is finest when we don’t agree with what our adversary says, but we’ll fight for his right to say it. If we can teach our children to honestly decide what is fair and to have the perseverance to stand up for that – and then to stand up for what is fair for everyone, then we all win.

For Your Information

Self-reliance as a Value – The value we’ll be talking about when we learn about pioneers is self-reliance. Pioneers on the frontier had to be self-reliant because they were the only people there. You might want to explore this topic more with your family.

Go Texan Day – Rodeo Houston will be here before we know it, and we’ll have our own rodeo at the school on March 3. You might want to prepare your little cow poke costume. A bandana works well.

 Talk With Your Child’s Teacher – You don’t have to wait until conferences to ask questions about your child if not a scheduled visit in person maybe a call during lunch could work.

Classroom News

     Samuel  builds his confidence as he works with the color tablets, where he matches all the primary colors. Eleanor uses some of her class time working with the number sorter, where she matches the number of holes in a square with the number of pegs on the board. In the primary class, Eisa, Gwyneth, Elizabeth, Ava and Ameli Beja all had a lesson in fractions using the metal fraction circles. This material is used to introduce fractions with divisions into the tenths. The lesson was continued when we used an apple, cutting until there were eight pieces, we hear Ameli tell a passing teacher the she’s eating 1/8 of an apple.