Topic: Faerie Tales
It’s okay to be silly sometimes
The value is joy, one of the surest ways to live life most deeply.
For cooking, we’ll make pretzels as numbers, letters, and shapes.
Outside, we’ll make all kinds of bubbles.
The songs we’ll be singing are Puff the Magic Dragon, Do Your Ears Hang Low?, Ain’t It Great to Be Crazy?, Zippity-do-dah, and Where is Thmbkin?
For creative dramatics, we’ll have an imaginary friend.
Our art activities are snouts, Pinocchio, the boy who cried wolf, emperor’s new clothes, and Jack and the beanstalk.
For motor development, we’ll work on stamina by being bubbles for 20 minutes. For bilaterality, we’ll play food chain, golf, wishing well, and sack race.
THE VIDEO CULTURE
This generation of parents is the first group of adults who were raised in a society where virtually all homes had a television. The changes and results of research are staggering:
o The 1975 crop of 3-yar-olds had a 28-point decrease in SAT verbal and math scores from those of 20 years earlier.
o In addition to IQ scores, there is a physical difference in brains of children who have participated in activities compared to children who have merely observed the same activity.
o In addition to 20% reduced creativity, children who watch TV demonstrated reduced problem-solving persistence, greater sex-role stereotyping, and a dramatic increase in aggressive behavior.
o TV robs children of the chance to develop their own mental pictures – the kind of visual imagery that helps in solving math and science problems.
o A great deal of the brain structure that will eventually support adult thinking and behavior appears to be present by the end of a child’s second year. By age 5, 80% of the brain’s interconnections are in place.
Researchers have found that children watch television very differently from adults. Their different goals, life experiences, and assumptions markedly influence how children respond to what they see. While adults willing suspend their disbelief while watching a television program, children often have no disbelief to suspend. Parents use television for entertainment, but children use it to seek out information about the world. Until children reach grade school, many children can’t tell the difference the program and the commercials. They can’t understand motives behind the messages promoting products. Also, preschoolers and toddlers tend to believe everything adults tell them. They don’t have the personal experience and cognitive development to allow them to question the accuracy of what they see. Even older children routinely accept the information they receive from television without questioning it.
As products of the video culture, today we have to be particularly on guard to what television is doing to our children. We unconsciously accept television as a pervasive part of our lives. Analyze for a minute the messages on the TV in your house. Hear the sexual innuendoes, “put downs”, biased remarks, verbal or physical acts of violence, and the message that if you don’t feel good, take a drug. Notice how many hours your children are sitting still while you are thankful that they are quiet. Take action to promote the ability to carry on a conversation, to occupy yourself with meaningful activities, to promote courtesy, integrity, strength, intelligence, and accomplishment. We owe it to ourselves and to our children to take a stand for a better future.
Magic – This is the one time of the year we use make believe in the classroom. Maria Montessori was adamant that preschool children who are in the concrete/operational phase of their development have so much to contend with just in reality that they don’t need make believe things also. So we’re doubly careful in the classroom to be totally real. Except this week. It’s really in preparation for the next week, which is April Fool’s. This week we’ll talk about silly and pretend and be as creative as we know how to be. Please join with us in this joyful, fun, and childlike time. Plan at home to read faerie tales for bedtime stories and have pretend friends for dinner and walk like a “wild thing”.
Extra Clothes – Our supply of extra clothes is empty if your child has come home in barrowed school clothes please make a point to return them to the school. If you child has out grown his/her clothes we really could use pants and underwear our supply of shirts are plentiful.
Easter Egg Hunt – Wow it really caught us off guard this year and now we need to start making preparations. We are asking that parents fill at least two bags of eggs with trinkets (no candy please) for our Easter egg hunt. Stuffing could include feathers, stickers, rings, and cars. The Easter egg hunt will be Friday April 2, and we would like to have all the eggs in by Wednesday March 31st. Please pick up your two bags of plastic eggs during pick up time.