Hands off in preschool

In our zest to help children "create" sometimes it is easy to forget what it means to be creative... Creativity is inspired when we give children the opportunity to explore the art process and materials without the pressure of having to do it in a specific way... In an effort to teach children, adults get the idea that if they control a child's movements or actions that this will help the child be more proficient [...]

Playing the train game in preschool

During our musical a few weeks ago, I taught the older children a little train song and dance. Part of what we did was use our chairs to make a train for the musical. The two year old children would often come into the room and watch us as we practiced the train song... I went in the twos classroom sometime later and found them making their own train... At first only one or two [...]

Try the frog leap in preschool

In preschool, the frog leap is just a bit different than the old fashioned leap frog game where you jump over another person's back... In this classroom, the teacher laminated some lili-pads on the floor for her little frogs to leap across. We have the two-footed leap... The split leap.. The full-body leap (sorry for a blurry photo - he was leaping kind of fast:) ... And the partner leap... Another simple way to create some [...]

Creative challenge: The little box carpenter

It is my sincerest privilege to share this post along with 20+ fabulous bloggers who have collaborated together to present this creative challenge: creative ideas to do with a cardboard box.  This terrific blog linky was put together by the tireless efforts and leadership of Tinkerlab in honor of her 1 year anniversary.  Congratulations to Tinkerlab! As I have mentioned before, I am really not all that creative so coming up with a box idea left [...]

By | May 5th, 2011|Categories: The Value of Play|Tags: , , , |24 Comments

An earth day poem: What do you see?

I wrote this little earth day poem based on the story "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?" by Bill Martin Jr. and  Eric Carle. Teacher, teacher what do you see? I see lady bugs, sorting, and counting games looking at me.... Teacher, teacher what do you see? I see paper animals, trees, flowers, and instruments looking at me... Teacher, teacher what do you see? I see bowling pins, spy games, and painting tools [...]

By | April 23rd, 2011|Categories: Special Occasions, The Value of Play|Tags: , , , |6 Comments

Getting babies and toddlers outside to play

This week Childhood 101 is celebrating "Get Outdoors and Play" and that is one thing my nieces and nephews love to do.  There are all kinds of fun things infants and toddlers can do outside... My little niece Clara is having a ball swinging in her backyard... If this doesn't look like fun, then I am not sure what does... My nephew Wyatt loves the outdoors too...   Click here to see Wy [...]

By | April 17th, 2011|Categories: Painting, Science and Nature, The Value of Play|Tags: , , , |2 Comments

The color game in preschool

This is a little game we made for our preschoolers to have fun working on color recognition... First we made a little cube and put a different color on each side - red, yellow, blue, green, orange, and purple. Then we cut out 6 large circles from construction paper and laminated them... The object of the game was to roll the color cube and then stand on the color of circle that matches the color [...]

By | April 3rd, 2011|Categories: Games, The Value of Play|Tags: , , , , |7 Comments

Y is for yarn in preschool

Preschoolers are unpredictable when it comes to what they will find interesting and how they will play with the different items we put in the activity boxes. I found this adorable idea of making yarn designs on sandpaper by Polwig and decided to turn this idea into one of our activity boxes... We placed sandpaper and yarn in the box with the idea that the children would make yarn designs and pictures on the sandpaper. [...]

Adding to the science and nature center in preschool

Lately, I have been trying to find items to add to our science centers. Filling baskets in the science center is an ongoing effort. I am trying to use items that I find already available in our school and so I have been searching through the old materials in the school storage area... As you can see, there is room for a few more baskets so I keep working on it a little each week. Last [...]