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Post Thanksgiving

Published on November 28, 2016 under DAP
Post Thanksgiving

Most of you know that I have gradually become more natural, hippified, simplistic , reggio – inspired , child centered, …. there are so many adjectives that could explain or might be pinned on me for my current method of ” teaching ” children.  Please believe me when I say the things I execute each day are usually well thought out and planned . I seek intentional ways to incorporate learning through fun and play.  Well, of course there are days that don’t go as planned and that is ok too.  Life doesn’t always go as we plan especially in a home with 16 preschoolers.  But even when things don’t go as planned at some point there is an intentional decision to ” let go ” of what was planned and follow the children’s lead.  I try to be continually growing as a teacher.   I read. I watch. I listen. I ask questions.  . One of the sites I peruse often is filled with some amazing teachers.  They don’t believe in theme based teaching but once in a while get caught in an activity or two around the holidays.  The holidays tend to do that to the most grounded teachers that believe in process over product and child centered over teacher initiated.  As I read though a post I was intrigued by a thought.   The teachers were discussing that children learn more after there is foundational knowledge.  ( Hence the reason we expose them to so many things in preschool. )    This particular teacher said that IF she teaches or explores holidays she does it more after the holiday when children’s interest is peeked and they have information to base opinions and questions on.  Make sense , right ? I am not sure I am ready to pack away all my holiday books and activities and only bring them out if the children ask for them but I certainly am game for hanging on to them a while longer.  Today we talked a lot about what we did over Thanksgiving. What were our favorite foods ? That is the part of Thanksgiving that is real to children.  Anyway, now you know why I am still working Thanksgiving like a store clerk on Black Friday. Work it  !

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I took out the new model magic dough that I got at the dayspring sale. Now, I wish I had gotten several.  The kids love it and it is so much more clean.  Put some feathers on the table. I wonder what you can make with the model magic and the feathers?

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Indian Corn.  What will happen to the Indian corn if we submerge it in water? ( Remember that prior knowledge thing we just talked about ?  Look at P’s answer on the chart.  She is using prior knowledge to base her answer on.  It will not turn out to be what happens but she doesn’t know that and its brilliant to draw that conclusion based on what happened with the pine cone.

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We did a little fine motor work today in the guise of drawing another turkey  . ” Oh , you DID draw a turkey.  I wonder if you can write your own name on your paper.  Or ! HERE ! I am writing turkey on this paper. Can you write it on your paper so we remember what it is ?  ”   Sneaky ….

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Do you see Brynlee’s name ? 🙂

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This is Gracie’s first year at preschool . She made a wonderful attempt at making a G.

There are different expectations for 3 year olds than 4 year olds.  You also have to appreciate the unique pace each child develops at.  By looking at these two papers B’s tells me that she is ready to move on to writing her last name . I will look for fun playful ways to introduce that to her and encourage her.  G’s tell’s me that she is willing to try and needs a little more fine motor support to be ready to write.  Things I could do to help G would be bead stringing  and playdoh activities.

Pushing a child to do something they are not ready or willing to do can back fire. I want my littles to leave me feeling confident and in love with learning .

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Five fat turkeys resting in nest.

And lastly , Simon had fun at the magnetic board making his name.  I said , you did it Simon.  I knew he was ready for a challenge. ” Can you make Parkers name also ? ”  Of course he can.

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