Stop , Think and Choose
Today is one of those days that people will look back to say ” I remember the day ( fill in the blank ) was elected President of the United States. ” I hope that everyone has done something wonderful today so the day is attached to a good memory. Either way we vote , the face of America will change . I want to tell you first how grateful I am to live in the United States of America. I have travelled to a few other countries and even lived in Greece for a short while. I moved into my home on the island of Crete the year Greece was holding elections. As movers placed my things in my home the Greek men would crowd around the radio to listen to the elections. As an American I was interested also . If it went the ” wrong ” direction ” I could be moving again really soon. One of the candidates did not want the US on their land. Long story short I lived there for a year . Elections are important . I am also thankful to the momma that read my Facebook post this morning about my schedule today and my fear that I would not make it to the poll and text me to say ” Ive got your back. ” Roshelle, thank you. We are blessed in many ways to have you as part of our preschool family. As I left the poll this morning I teared up. I had to pause to think ” what is going on with me ? Why am I emotional about this ?” What an amazing but heavy responsibility. We are making choices that will affect our children and our grandchildren’s lives for a long time . Deep Breath.
Children this age ( preschool ) don’t have a huge understanding of voting. We can talk about it but many of them don’t understand that 12 is more than 4 . They can count to 12 but they can’t hand me four crayons. Some of the indicators we look for in development are :
Counts with understanding
Shows beginning understanding of number and quantity
Until these skills come on board we are just going through the motions when we vote .
We did do a few fun things today to lay a foundation for what an ” election ” is .
We watched an awesome episode of Daniel Tiger and election day. Daniel had to stop , think and choose all day. His class voted on whether they should get a slide or a swing set. Before making a decision Daniel played on each to help him make a choice. They voted on getting a rabbit for a new classroom pet or a turtle. The teacher gave them a book to read about rabbits and turtles and stuffed animals to play with to help them make an informed choice.
After watching this short cartoon we lined up and voted to have chocolate cookies or oreo cookies with our lunch. We tasted a TINY morsel of each cookie first before marking our ballot. ( Teaching to collect data to make decisions is important ! ) We waited in a line. Waiting was hard but we loved it when our time to vote came.
We tallied the votes and chocolate chip cookies won !
I heard one little girl say ” Oreo’s YOU ARE GOING DOWN.’ I almost giggled.
We had a couple that were sad that oreos were chosen. I replied ” We voted. You can handle this . You wanted oreos. Maybe next time . ”
Again, today is a day that will be an important piece of your child’s history. We made a crafty art project to commemorate. The bottom of their flag says ” The day I made this American flag the day _______ was elected as President of the United States . ” It is dated. Tonight I will fill it in for you and send it home as a keep sake by Friday .
There was also some beautiful art work created today.
We want children to not seek approval or compliments from others. We want their satisfaction and joy to be intrinsic. Let’s move away from ” That is beautiful . You did a great job. ” to phrases like this :
( looking at the art in the picture )
I see you used red and blue a lot. Why did you chose those ?
The yellow reminds me of something. What did you intend for that to be ? Tell me about it .
You made straight lines and you made curved lines. You did it.
Your teacher wrote ” thunder and lightening ” on your paper . Why ? How does thunder and lightening make you feel.
We are moving away from the judgment and approval seeking style.
I wish I had learned long ago not to let others opinions determine the value of my work.
I hope you voted today. Whether you did or did not and whether you voted for who I thought should be the nations ” boss ” I want you to know this teacher loves you and your littles very much . My relationship with you is not contingent upon whether we agree or not. Our common denominator was only concerned today whether the oreos or the chocolate chip cookies would win and I am ok with that. No matter who is in the white house we can love and teach our littles to love .
It really was a good day.