It isn’t surprising to find a wide range of food allergy information on student’s health forms these days. Studies show that food allergies affect up to 2 1/2 million children. Six foods account for 90 percent of all allergic reactions to foods in children: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, and soy. Most children will outgrow their food allergies with the exception of peanut and tree nut allergy, which are considered life-long.Read More
As a parent, you become immediately aware that you are your child's first teacher. Then it should not be surprising that your child's initial important learning environment is your home. Your home setting can be a comforting, warm cocoon where your child very naturally learns about love and trust while you snuggle together reading a book in bed. Or it can be a stimulating place in which he learns to satisfy his curiosity while sinking toys in the bathtub.Read More
In Fall I leap in a crispy leaf pile
And lie still for a good long while
As I look past the trees and into the sky
To watch the v’s of geese honking by
With my friends I know a leaf fight’s in store
Which will make raking a longer chore.....Read More
As we well know, young children are very active and egocentric, need lots of hands-on opportunities to learn, and require constant challenges and stimulation (Wardle, 2003). When the traditional calendar activity is presented, one child gets to identify the day, week, month, year, and other information—for example, the weather for that day—while the rest of the children quietly observe.Read More
Exploring science is an exciting and wondrous part of early childhood. Innately curious, young children seek to investigate and discover “how their world works.” They question; they look; they listen; they talk about their findings. They investigate the passage of light through various materials; how insects crawl on the ground; and what sinks, what floats, and why!Read More
The first day of school is always exciting! But it can also be a little bit scary for first-time students (and parents). Here are some first day tips and activities to help students feel comfortable and start off a successful school year!Read More
Circles, squares, rectangles, and triangles are everywhere. By using the children’s immediate world to discover shapes in things that are familiar to them, they will have the opportunity for a hands-on approach to learning both two- and three-dimensional shapes. With a close look at nature, school environments, and even common items found at home, many shapes can be observed and explored.Read More
As seasons go, spring is generally considered to be the symbolic time of new beginnings and fresh starts. However, for young children and their parents and teachers, no season can compare with fall and the jittery excitement of starting school!
Even if children have been in summer childcare or are simply moving to a new level within their current school, a new school year can be a time of some stress and anxiety for all concerned. Parents and caregivers may have concerns about new schedules, new teachers and the bittersweet emotions they have about their child’s increasing independence. Teachers, whether novice or well-seasoned, face a new dynamic every year and the excitement of developing relationships with new children and parents. Of course, children are likely to be the most anxious about this adventure: new teachers, a new daily schedule, new friends and the broadened expectations that are placed on them may counter their anticipation to begin school.Read More
ntegrate! Motivate! Authenticate! Sometimes it seems as if mandates to improve our early childhood curriculum are hurled at us from all directions like pedagogical Frisbees. What's a teacher to do? Adopt the project approach? Go Reggio? Climb onto High Scope? Switch to Waldorf? Modify Montessori? Forget curriculum? The answer may not be so drastic. Increasingly teachers in a broad spectrum of programs have decided that they can integrate their curriculum, motivate their children, AND provide authentic experiences by teaching with themesRead More
Parents should be informed about your program’s rules and policies, especially the ones directly affecting their children (e.g., no profanity). Classroom, playground, and bathroom expectations, as well as field trip and bus rules, should all be clearly communicated. While rules and policies should be written in your parent handbook, it is also helpful to remind parents of them in your monthly newsletter. Some rules – for instance appropriate behavior for school-age children while getting on the bus – must be communicated to parents immediately. Other rules, such as those for field trips, may be communicated closer to the actual event.Read More
Now is the perfect time to begin preparing your classroom for your fall program and the new school year. The key to being well prepared in September is to make sure that you, your staff, and parents all have the same expectations about your program, rules, and policies.Read More
Ryan is allergic to milk, please be sure he isn’t served milk...Jennifer is allergic to peanuts, she must avoid all foods with peanuts...Lindsey is allergic to milk and eggs, do not allow her to eat foods with either of these ingredients...Read More
Seasons and holidays provide wonderful chances to redecorate the classroom and to change up classroom themes. Make the space interesting with decorations for bulletin boards, walls, doors, ceilings, windows. You can design and create your own pieces, or have the whole class join in the fun. Here’s some ideas for how to decorate your classroom.Read More
It’s important to know how to prepare for the school year. Don’t wait until the last minute! There are always things that unexpectedly pop up that you didn’t even think about. Make the most of your summer break and cut the anxiety by starting early. Here’s how to prepare for back to school.Read More
In honor of Father’s Day, I wanted to reflect on the need for positive male role models in education and the early educational environment. Preschools and early education have primarily been a female dominated industry but as times have changed, more men are drawn to contributing to early education by becoming teachers or helping out more as volunteers in their own children’s classrooms.Read More
Find and use interesting natural items to paint a picture!
- To explore different textures within nature
- To explore color mixing
- To practice using descriptor words
- To practice using fine motor skills
Before You Start: Gather materials needed: BioColor® paint, art paper, paper plates or paint trays and various items collected from nature.
Let's Get Started! Step 1. Lead a nature walk outside to gather items to use to paint with. Provide the children with a small bag to use to collect their items. Some items could be assorted leaves, flowers or small twigs and branches.
Step 2. Pour various colors of BioColor® paint onto paper plates or plastic art trays.
Step 3. Dip a nature item into the paint, then carefully use the nature item to paint onto the art paper.
Step 4. Add or mix additional colors onto the picture. Use multiple nature items to create different effects.
Furthermore: Discuss the different effects that various nature items have when they are used to paint on art paper. Does it make a difference if the item is soft, hard, rough or smooth?
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Using icebergs made from paint, children watch the melting process and make observations of the combination of colors, flow of the melting colors and the elapsed time needed for their "icebergs" to melt.
- To practice measuring
- To understand the difference between liquids and solids
- To hypothesize about the new colors created when colors are mixed
- To create art and patterns from the melting "iceberg" paint
- To discuss where real icebergs can be found
Before You Start: Gather materials needed: small paper cups, markers, water, BioColor® paint colors and a covered working surface.
Let's Get Started! Step 1. Give each student a small paper cup and have them write their name on it. Students should add their own mix of BioColor® paint to their cup. Freeze overnight.
Step 2. Have the children guess (i.e., make hypotheses) what will happen when their icebergs begin to melt and blend together. What new colors will be created?
Step 3. Tear away the paper cups to release each iceberg. Place the icebergs on a plastic tray, panel or another type of water container.
Step 4. Observe the melting icebergs. Which hypotheses proved to be true? Encourage the children to develop new hypotheses as they observe.
Furthermore: Discuss further scientific principles that can be observed while the icebergs are melting. For example, solid water (ice) floats on liquid water. Do the melting paint colors blend the same way they do on paper?
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