Tuesday, November 13 - What We Did Today!

Today there were several new options set up for the kids.  I changed out the dry table to painted and glass rocks and added the pirate ship and orcas.  The kids were busy searching for treasure, gold rocks, and/or glass rocks of specific colors.  They were loading up the ship with rocks or carrying rocks in buckets.  Harlan had an entire crew listening to whatever she had to say!

The water table is now the home of pipes of various sizes, connectors, funnels and cups.  Today I set up the pipes for the kids to investigate.  I heard lots of “where did the water go?”  “how do I get it over there?” and “why isn’t it coming out here?”.  All good inquiry questions.  From there, they were able to research (follow the pipes), and problem solve.  Many of the kids spent most of their time at the water table right up until the end of snack.

Baker and Lisette were outside for a while, but it was too cold for most of the kids.  We read about two Can Do Kids - Oliver and Baker.  We are posting these on the front bulletin board once they have been read to the group.  Be sure to get your child’s Can-Do homework in soon, so that we can share it with the class and hang it up.

My thanks to Michelle and Debbie for all of their help today!

Friday, November 9 - What We Did Today!

I enjoyed today so much, even with the loud and rowdy gym time!  These kids showed me how much they could do independently as well as in a team.

After circle, the kids independently split into three groups, one to the art table, one to the sensory table, and the last outside.  It turned out to be a split of seven outside and seven inside and stayed that way throughout the morning even though the kids themselves moved in and out.

Nathanial was working with kids at the art table painting with chalk.  The interest in this only lasted about 15 minutes at best.   At that time, they headed over to the sensory table where three or four kids were helping me make some new play dough.  When the next group headed over, we had finished, but they wanted to help also, so we made another batch.  For a while, all seven were hanging at the play dough table creating, cutting, or making blob-blobs. 

I headed outside to see what was happening outside.  Wow!  The first time I went out, they had begun to make a Yeti trap.  Mark had volunteered to be the Yeti dummy and test out the trap.  At this point it was made up of boards set up like balance beams with dirt on top.  I was told that the dirt was to make the Yeti slip and get caught.  The next time I came out, it was twice as long and had pieces going off the balance beams to confuse the Yeti or possibly to be an additional trap.  All I know is that poor Mark did more testing then the crash dummies!  The last time I was outside, I took a video to show you the extent these kids went to in creating the trap. Be sure to watch it.

The interesting thing for me, was that the kids changed throughout the process.  The seven that started slowly returned to the classroom as those at the sensory table began switching to outside.  A few stayed in place the entire time, but most kept the Yeti trap going when they joined outside. 

My thanks to Nathanial and Mark for all of their help today!

Oops, they won’t let me post the video! Sorry!


Thursday, November 8 - What We Did Today!

Today was a fascinating day for me.  I wandered a lot and watched as the kids moved around grouping and regrouping at different centers.  In general, they created their own centers as they passed through.  This was most clear in the car, train, and truck area.

At first only Knox stopped in.  He found the blocks stacked in an unusual way and immediately found a way to add a board allowing him to race his car down the now present ramp.  This kept him busy for quite a while.

Eventually, Morrie came over started building with the train tracks.  Oliver joined him and as they continued, they discovered a train mystery.  They couldn’t find a way to add track to one of the overpasses.  Boy, did I blow it!  I showed them how there was a piece that slides forward for adding track.  As soon as I stood up to watch, Ali told me they had been wondering and working on this for a while.  They had been problem solving and working together to find the answer.  As I said, boy did I blow it!  They probably would have figured it out on their own with a bit more time.

As they worked more on the train track, Lisette and Baker joined in.  They were mainly interested in the train track and trains while Morrie was starting to find ramps to use within the set-up.  Everyone was still working well together, but it was getting a bit crowded.

James came in at the edge of the area and noticed that I had moved a board to make room for the others with the train.  He picked it up and leaned it on the writing table creating a ramp for cars – different from Knox’s but still a ramp.  He then added a gutter drain from the opposite side essentially creating an x with the board and the ramp.  He took turns putting the cars down first the board and then the drain.  Morrie was trying to leave and when James moved one of the ramps, Morrie said it was too crowded to keep working.

The fascinating part for me was that this process went on from 10:15 to 10:55!  No arguments that needed adult interference.  At one point everyone was working together and at other times there were two or three groups working in the same space but doing different things.

My thanks to Alicia and Ali for all of their help today!

Wednesday, November 7 - What We Did Today!

Today we talked about our favorite foods.  We checked out some fruits and vegetables in an A to Z fruits and veggies book.  Then we made a favorite food collage to add to our books.  Not surprisingly, mac and cheese and Spaghetti were very popular.

Outside, there was a group of Ninjas.  They were practicing their sword play.  Unfortunately for me, they were using me as the practice dummy.  This is a normal development for many kids.  It is a chance for them to test out their power and ability to keep safe and protect themselves. 

Today’s game of Ninja had three players.  When one player approached a new player and pointed his stick, the new player said, “I don’t like that!”  This allowed me to remind everyone that if others don’t want to play you need to stop.  This group told the new person that they were ninjas and asked if she wanted to play.  She said yes, and the game continued without incident for about 15 minutes.

One of the kids pretended to stab another saying, “I won.”  When the player was obviously upset about “not winning” the first replied, “this time you can win”, at which point he started the process again showing her where to stab him.  She did and said, “I win!”

Now, I could have stopped this play as soon as I saw the sticks being picked up but look at what they would have missed out on.  Conflict resolution, team playing, and problem solving at least.  Who knows what else they picked up regarding treating each other with respect and listening to one another.

If you notice kids “fighting” and are not sure whether to stop it, step back and watch for a bit.  Is anyone trying to leave the play?  Are their faces relaxed and happy or angry and tense?  I like to ask the participants if they are playing a game.  This gives kids who are uncomfortable with the play to say “no” at which point I will suggest to the others that they find someone who would like to play that game.

My thanks to Kristen and Trisha for all of their help today!

Tuesday, November 6 - What We Did Today!

Today we celebrated Seyi’s 3rd birthday with confetti cake and a song. We started our day with the water table.  Most of the kids were hanging there from the time they walked in until it was time to make the cake.  There were 7 kids surrounding the table most of the time.  The interest was water beads.  They are polymers that absorb water growing as they do.  We have them in multiple colors creating a great visual display never mind the textural experience.

At the art table, we had grated chalk in various colors, water and cotton swabs for painting.  The kids were interested at first, but then making the cake or playing in the sun became higher interests!

Outside, the sun was out, and Alex, Morrie, Harlan, and Oliver were digging for buried treasure or worms which, for some of them, is the same thing.  Morrie went away with a pocket of treasures (no worms, I promise!)  Cordelia, June, and Baker were climbing Mt. Everest using the slide and a rope.  I was chanting grab, pull, step over and over until they made it to the top!

Morrie and Oliver had decided to go down the roller coaster backwards by turning the car around at the top and kicking off.  There were a few jolts as they veered too close to the red box and stopped dead!  We talked about why they thought they were going off course, but they didn’t get too far into the mechanics of weight shifting.  Something to bring up another time.

Inside, I noticed Knox using blocks to build something for his cars.  He was creating a bumpy road out of castle blocks. Harlan and Baker joined him with the cars only using the garage instead of the blocks for the cars to go down.  Elliette, Seyi, and Lisette were in the dramatic play area making food.  I think they managed to use every piece of food we have!

My thanks to Ayo and George for all of their help!


Monday, November 5 - What We Did Today!

Today we talked about homes.  We read a book called “Homes” and then talked about what our homes looked like – were they houses, apartments, tents?  What shapes were they – did they have a flat roof or a triangular roof?  What color were they?  From there, they went to the art table and drew their rendition of their homes with pencil.  Once getting the details complete, the kids painted their home with water color paint.  They look awesome and will be a part of their All About Me books.

Outside, Brad had many kids.  He was playing a Yeti and chasing after the kids.  They, of course, loved every minute of it.  I was surprised when I was able to bring some in to draw their homes!

Inside, Addy and Eliza were making food for some finger puppets, Simon was building with the Legos, and Molly was building with Magna Tiles.  I was at the play dough table with Una for a bit working with a mixture of black and purple play dough.

The water table was filled with warm water and Rowan thought it would be great to put a can drum into the table.  When I mentioned that the drum belonged to someone and I didn’t want to ruin it, I asked if any large tin can would work.  I found two cans and added them to the water then found several measuring cups.  The kids enjoyed filling up the cans using the measuring cups.  After a while, we discovered one of the cans wouldn’t stay filled.  After checking out the can, we found two holes in the base of the can that the water must have been coming out of, but because the can was sitting in the water, we couldn’t see the water escaping.

My thanks to Cheryl and Brad for all of their help!

Friday, November 2 - What We Did Today!

Today we had our special guest!  Jennifer from Wood working with Children also works at Catlin Cable as the wood working teacher for the younger group.  She has been coming to Irvington almost as long as I have been here. 

Most of the kids stayed and learnt about the various tools, what they are called, and what their job is.  From there, Jennifer sent them to the wood box to choose some wood.  The main idea is to have them connect two pieces together, but Simon said he needed more than two pieces.  I asked him if he had a plan.  He did, so we headed to the writing table to draw a diagram of his plan.  From there, there was no stopping him.  His design changed a bit as he put the pieces together, but only for the better.

Liam put two pieces together trying both the hammer and the screwdriver.  It followed this up by using the saw to cut one of the boards (he was the only one to use the saw!)  When he was finished, I asked him if he wanted to add anything or make it into something.  He decided he would like to add wheels.  He chose some beads that Jennifer had in her box and attached them to the sides.

As most kids decide to start by attaching their two pieces in the shape of a cross, we have many airplanes.  Bodhi and Margot were both flying the pieces on test flights once they finished.  Others, like Josie and Bash, were so excited and proud of themselves for hammering nails all the way into the wood without any help that the experience was all they needed.  Others like Lex and River continued to add things on to their original two-piece connection creating many connections with both screws and nails!

Eliza waited until it was quieter and fewer people were working at the benches before she chose a triangular piece of wood and used screws and a screw-drill to add beads in a decorative manner.

My thanks to Talieson and Brittni for all of their help today!

Thursday, November 1 - What We Did Today!

Today we had our special guest!  Jennifer from Wood working with Children also works at Catlin Cable as the wood working teacher for the younger group.  She has been coming to Irvington almost as long as I have been here.  I love having her for many reasons.  The main reason is that she works so well with this age group!  She knows they may be crazy or calm, interested or not, and persistent or easily turned off.  The second reason is what a great example she is for the girls in the group.  It is always nice to see someone doing something that would be considered non-stereotypical!

I wasn’t sure how it would go at first as several kids would rather just get down to the business at hand and play, but once they were sent to pick out some wood, they jumped right in.  At this age, we typically see a piece of wood with a nail and or screw embedded, and there was some of that.  But we also had a duck (planned and executed), a helicopter, a plane, a house, and a dinosaur!  Pretty amazing for this age group.

The special guest took up most of the day, so we only had a bit of time for free time.  I was outside with several kids.  They were digging and driving trucks off of the slide.  Inside, many kids were working with the cars and the garage.  Their play with the garage evolves each day, so I am never sure what I will see in that area.  Today we had the opportunity to work on conflict resolution!  As the kids become more comfortable, they will begin to test their power within the classroom.  This gives me a great opportunity to work with kids on feeling empowered to stop something that they don’t like as well as to help an aggressive child find alternative ways to work with others.

James was using a piece of downspout as a ramp for some of the cars.  He tested the best way to drive the cars (on top or inside), the best angle to use (straight up and down didn’t work very well), and whether it was better outside or inside (outside their were less kids trying to put their cars down the ramp at the same time as he was)!

My thanks to Dustin and Amber for all of their help today and for all of the thoughtful birthday wishes!

Tuesday, October 30 - What We Did Today!

With Halloween just around the corner, we had our party today.  Many of the kids came in their costumes while others chose to change just before the parade.  We had Minnie Mouse, Poppy, Supergirl, Superman, Hay-hay (I’m not sure how that is spelled, but you know who I mean!) an astronaut and many others. 

We made pumpkin bread for our party which must have been good as there were only crumbs left.  We gave pumpkins faces, and spiders legs at the art table.  But, I noticed that most of the kids were playing in one of three areas.

In the dramatic play area, Lisette was cooking for Baker and her baby.  When they were through others took up where they left off.  The cars and the garage were very popular as Knox, Morrie and Alex took turns taking their car down the garage ramp.  This left us with many opportunities to work with kids on talking to others rather than screaming, letting others know when we don’t like something, and solving problems!  James found a time to work in this area when he was the only one allowing him to do whatever he wanted with the cars and garage.

Over in the manipulative area, Oliver was building a tower with Duplo’s.  I asked him what kind of tower it was, and he told me it was a king’s tower, and he had lots of kids, so the tower had to be tall.  Check out how tall it got before it fell.  At the same time, Alex was working with the marble run.  At first, he was just holding some runs that he had put together and running the marbles.  I showed him the bases and how to set up the beginning runs. He worked with the marbles for about 15 minutes.  This interested Lisette, so she asked about the runs and we showed her where they were.  She also put some together so that she could run marbles down the chutes.

Elliette and Seyi had found many marbles and began to create their own game.  This lasted until last call for snack when they decided it was time to eat.

My thanks to Griffin, Leanne, and Sara for all of their help today!  Also, thanks to those of you who attended the parade and party, it means a lot to the kids!

Friday, October 26 - What We Did Today!

Today at first circle, we talked about our homework assignment.  I asked the kids what their favorite foods were and told them they were going to write a recipe for that food.  Many kids said Mac and Cheese was their favorite.  They will draw a picture on the paper I sent home and then dictate the recipe.  Any adult can help them with this project.

At the art table, we were making webs with wood, nails and yarn.  Those interested did a great job and immediately put their spiders from Wednesday into the web.  This project always draws a different crowd to the art table!

Some of the kids who hadn’t made a spider decided today to create one today.  Addy was adamant that her spider, Milo, needed long red, blue, and green hair which she added before we hung Milo up in our web!

Outside, kids came and went a usual, but Eliza was out there most of the morning.  She was up in the play structure and climbing the rock wall.  She found some worms that she came to show me as well.

The energy level was very high today and the noise level followed suit.  I made sure they had as much time as possible in the gym to work through some of said energy before story and home.  The neat thing, though, is that even though they were very loud, it wasn’t because someone was hurt or yelling at someone else.  It was purely excitement at what they were doing.  For instance, Simon and Liam were continuing physics experiments with cars, balls, and spiders using ramps, marble runs, and tables.  Molly had help from an alumnus in building a comfortable space for herself and her stuffy friends.

Bash, Sebastian, Bodhi and River were working with the black and purple play dough for a while as they shared, talked and created.  Josie joined in for a while before moving on.

My thanks to Jake and Aaron for all of their help.

Thursday, October 25 - What We Did Today!

Today our 12 caterpillars were inside and outside, working together and working alone, and seeming to enjoy it all!  I know I did.

At the art table, we created spiders.  There were some books for reference, but the idea was to decide what they needed for their spider, put it together except for the legs, and then have Alicia help with the legs using the glue gun.  The kids were so proud of their creations.  Some of them are nestled in out classroom web while others were added to webs created by their owners.  Baker had his placed just right on his web and then taped to the wall.

Outside, Morrie was making a cake in the dirt while Baker was climbing Mt. Everest!  Many of the kids were digging in the dirt having a grand time.

There was much interest in the ramps and car garages today.  Various kids were working together with one of the new garages, while Oliver and Cordelia were running things through tubes at different pitches.  Once the garage cleared up, Elliette, Seyi, and June began using it with people and a script instead of cars.  They were busy for quite a while.

At the play dough table, Lisette and Elliette were rolling out black and purple dough and cutting out Halloween cats, witches, and skeletons.  Others joined in throughout the morning.

During circle, we had the chance to talk about germs from coughing and sneezing.  The Butterfly class made germ gardens, and I was able to borrow one to show the kids the germs that had grown.  With that information and a picture in their minds of what germs looked like, most of the kids agreed they would rather wash their hands then eat those germs!

My thanks to Alicia and James for all of their help today!

Tuesday, October 23 - What We Did Today!

Today we celebrated James 4th birthday with a song and chocolate cake!  Melinda had about seven kids helping with the cake.  They are going to be amazing bakers if they are not already!

We painted pumpkins in the water table and then washed them in the buckets.  Which one was the most fun?  Hard to tell, but there was definitely a lot of participation.

At the art table, the kids were dropping marbles and some white paint into a cake pan lined with black paper.  As they roll the marbles around the pan, they create lines similar to those in a spider web.  Some kids chose to use more paint than others giving their web a different look.

There has been much interest in the car area as we add blocks and ramps to the regular space.  The kids are testing out different ways to send their cars down the ramps, different types of ramps, and materials to make the ramps.  We are just starting to do some problem solving in this area.  How high should the ramp be?  Can we add another ramp?  How can we stop the car at the end of the ramp?

Many of the kids were working on our number puzzles.  These can be tricky.  They are set up so that for each number, the puzzle board has the same number of objects painted on it and the same number of puzzle pieces.  For instance, the number 3 puzzle has three caps on the board and three pieces to put together.  This helps begin the process of connecting the numeral 3 to three objects.

This class is such a joy, thank you for sharing them with me!  My thanks to Michelle and Melinda for all of their help today!

Monday, October 22 - What We Did Today!

Today in first circle we the kids talked for quite a while.  We talked again about germs and colds, but the kids took the discussion to various other subjects.  We instigated the quiet hand policy, and, amazingly, most of the kids were able to remember to raise a hand if they had something to tell us.

There were many new things going on the centers.  We were painting pumpkins and then washing them.  For many of the kids the washing is the best part!  Bodhi and Bash worked on a pumpkin together which led to Josie telling Cheryl she wanted to share her pumpkin with someone.  It was obviously more fun with two!

There was purple and black play dough with many Halloween cookie cutters available.  Several of the kids joined in play dough to bring out some spooky Halloween creatures!

The dry table is full of leaves and spiders.  There are tweezers available help find and pick up the spiders.  At first, many of the kids were pretending to be afraid of the spiders, screaming when they spotted one.  This changed during the play to catching the spiders and building a spider home for them.  The tweezers (which look like alligators) became a part of the game by eating the spiders.  This game involved four and sometimes five boys and lasted for most of the morning.

Simon and Liam have been working with ramps for the last two weeks, so when I spotted a building toy that was about putting planks together to create different types of ramps, I bought it and brought it into class.  What I discovered was that there was much interest.  That if I was willing to help with the building, I would be doing ALL of the building.  And that it was probably to advance for these kids.  It was certainly worth a try though and I will bring it out again near the end of school.

Outside, Brittni was busy the entire morning.  She had house builders, diggers, cricket spider hunters, and tree climbers.  I wasn’t out long, but I did notice kids having to work together and doing a good job!

My thanks to Cheryl and Brittni for all of their help!

Wednesday, October 17 - What We Did Today!

Today in first circle we talked about germs again and then we started our own germ gardens.  As with most gardens, germs need to grow in or on something, so we used bread.  Each child received a ½ slice of white bread and a bag with their name on it.  I asked the kids to cough, sneeze, or spit on the bread then mist it with water before putting into their bags and sealing them.  They are presently in the kids’ cubbies though they are not for taking home yet.  We will be watching over the next week to see how they grow.

Outside, someone was busy the entire morning.  At one point, Jeff had several kids digging, working in the play structure, and riding the roller coaster.  We checked out the ghost pumpkin which was split in half yesterday to see what was inside.

The first page of our “All About Me” books was finished up today with collages of families.  Next, we will be comparing our homes – do we live in an apartment, tent, house, or something else?  What color is it?  What is it made of?

The baby washing was busy off and on this morning.  The two busiest stations today were by far, the dramatic play center and the ramps, blocks and balls.  Dramatic play began with about three kids deciding to go on a picnic, so they packed up the food and plates and headed for the manipulative area.  Later, Lex started a restaurant with unusual food options.  He made me a trout sandwich.  When I showed concern about the eyes staring at me, he offered to cut the head off.  Very thoughtful!  Gus came over to join him and was quickly offered a job at the restaurant.  Josie joined in and they continued for a while.

The ramps had been set up in a way that the kids had control over.  They could move them around, rebuild with the blocks, or take out the blocks altogether.  At some point in the morning, all of these were done!  There was a basket with ping pong balls, bigger 4-inch balls, a tape roll, and some smaller round things.  The ping pong balls became such a hit they asked me for more, so I brought the eight out that I had.  Their use changed immediately from rolling to bouncing.  Liam discovered how to throw the ball so that it would get caught in a back and forth movement between two blocks, he continued checking out other things he could do with these very bouncy balls.  I look forward to seeing how these balls motivate kids to problem solve!

My thanks to Kristen and Jeff for all of their help today!

Tuesday, October 16 - What We Did Today!

Today was another beautiful day shared by many while outside digging and sliding.  Our white, or ghost pumpkin, was beginning to rot on the bottom, so we took the opportunity to open it up and check it out.  It had split on the bottom early in its’ growth, so we found a false outer skin on the inside!  I was probably more excited about this than the kids, as Seyi and Elliette looked at me trying to figure out what was so cool about that!

Harlan, Oliver, and June were busy building a home for the worms in the garden.  They very considerately added some unripe tomatoes for food.  Oliver told me that once they were finished, they would build me a comfy home with a bed and t.v.

Morrie and Alex were very busy digging up the drier dirt and filling a truck over and over.  I didn’t hear what their plan was, but it was obviously a good one as it keep them busy for a long time.

At the art table, the kids were making collages using various Halloween themed items.  It was an opportunity to discover how much glue is enough!  James had a great time using stamps to create stickers that he then could put on his paper.  Cordelia stuck with the felt ghosts and pumpkins.

We were washing babies at the water table and I heard that Baker did an awesome job getting his baby extra clean.  As usual, the cars and trucks were popular with most of the kids.  I had set up a few ramps near the cars and a basket of other things that rolled giving them something else to think about.  Knox was sure to test out everything in the basket to see how they rolled.

My thanks to George and Debbie for all of their help today!

Monday, October 15 - What We Did Today!

Today we talked about who was in our families.  We counted each of the kids’ families.  Some of the kids included their cat or dog, grandparents, or aunts and uncles.  From there, the kids headed to the art table and began making collages of their families.  This can be a tedious job for those who would rather be somewhere else, so they may have taken a break to finish another day.  This will be the second page in our “All About Me” books.

We were washing babies today in the water table.  They are not yet ready to be washing any real babies, but they sure seemed to be enjoying themselves.

Outside, Eliza and Gus were rebuilding the play structure.  They were hammering and sawing away in construction hats while Lex was deciding whether or not he should sit sideways on the roller coaster.  Bash and Margot were digging away in the garden and River was working in the sand box.

Addy and Una were playing guitars together and singing softly while Liam and Simon testing every slanted surface they could find to roll cars down.  Their theory at the time was to see which cars and which ramps would allow the car to roll down and land right side up!  They have been pursuing this for over a week now.  I set-up some different blocks and ramps near the writing table to see if that would help them to move their testing up a notch, but I think that they were enjoying running ramps out the loft windows, off the loft bannister, and through the tubes way too much.

My thanks to Cassie and Keane for all of their help today!

Thursday, October 11 - What We Did Today!

Today we celebrated Cordelia’s 4th birthday with a song and strawberry cake.  There were many bakers helping with this.  I did not see a crumb in the compost, so I’m guessing it was pretty good!

Outside, the weather was gorgeous and brought a few kids out to enjoy it.  Lisette, Baker, and James were out when I was out sliding themselves and trucks down the slide.  Baker was also working on his balancing with a beam across the stair and palette. 

Many of the kids came, played, built, and left the car and train area.  It started with Lisette, but through the morning, I saw Baker, Harlan, June, Alex, Elliette, Knox, Morrie and Oliver join in.

The dry table with the boxes and tubes was tested out a bit more today.  Someone found a way to climb higher up so they were able to reach the tubes.  Some of the tubes send the chestnuts into containers while others just send them back down to the table.  So far, no one has asked for the ladder or found a chair to move to the table, but they will figure that out soon enough.

The water table is still drawing interest.  Bubble making is always a fun thing to do especially if the water is warm!  Using the whisks builds muscles in different areas of the hands and wrist necessary for fine motor operations.  Next week I will try to find other tools to make bubbles.  Perhaps straws.

We have large pieces of paper on the easel which seem to allow for more large body movement.  Rather than just putting one or two lines on the paper, the kids are working across the paper with big arm movements!

These kids are doing an amazing job in circle as well as walking in the hallway.  We can share some information, sing a song, share some information, and then sing another song with little interruption.  As we walk down to the gym, these kids truly are as quiet as a worm, or butterfly, or whatever they choose to walk as!

My thanks to Jeff and Josh for all of their help today!

Wednesday, October 10 - What We Did Today!

Today at first circle, we started a book called “We Are All Alike…We Are All Different!”  This is a great book, written by Kindergarteners comparing our similarities and our differences.  It is a beginning to celebrating diversity.  The books that we will be writing, “All About Me”, will be expressing each of us as individuals.  We will be reading these to our friends and to the classroom as a way to compare how we are the same and how we are different.

I was able to help the kids finish their self-portraits which will be the cover of their “All About Me” books.  I took six kids at a time to the art table, gave them each a mirror, and had them tell me what they saw.  We talked about colors, shapes, and places on our heads.  Most of the kids took this seriously and were very proud of how their portrait turned out.  Be sure to check them out!  They are on the front bulletin board in alphabetical order.

As I was focused on helping with the self-portraits, I didn’t see a lot of what was going on elsewhere, but I did notice that Naomi had about six kids outside doing various things such as digging up worms, climbing Mt. Everest, and riding the roller coaster.

Once finished up with their portraits, most kids stayed inside and played some games.  There were several marble runs being built, fairy houses with magna tiles, Duplos and Legos, and cars speeding down ramps.

After snack, we have been looking at magazines while others finish up.  Once circle comes, I ask if anyone read or saw something they would like to tell us about.  This has been readily accepted as opposed to when I was having them read books.  As the main idea is to allow kids to practice turning pages in a book, knowing the front and back of a book, noting the writing in the book and for early readers reading something they are interested in, the magazines are just as good as an actual book.  Especially if they enjoy it!

My thanks to Bevin and Naomi for all of their help today!