Thursday, December 19, 2013

Pajama Day

We had so much fun wearing out pj's to school!

Sorting Presents

We had some small present manipulatives at our math area today!

We were curious to see what the children  would do...

Some sorted by colour:

Some sorted by size:

And then we counted to see which group had the most. 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Beading Provocation

Beading is a great way to encourage fine motor practice and strengthen little fingers in preparation for future writing activities. 

The children were provided with an assortment of delicate beads today and encouraged to create art with them. 

This was a very challenging activity that required much patience.

Sometimes the beads would slip off the wire and we'd have to persevere and start over again. 

Next time you walk by our classroom check out the beaded branch!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Beautiful Stuff!

Exploring with Found Materials

"To a young child, the world is full of materials to touch, discover, and explore. To find, collect, sort, and use materials is to embark on a special kind of adventure. For adults, gathering materials means rediscovering the richness and beauty in natural, unexpected, and recyclable objects that are all around us, but not often noticed." (Weisman Topal & Gandini, 1999)

We strive to nurture a spirit of creation and exploration in our children. This requires the use of innovative and exciting materials, many of which can be found in your homes. Please consider donating some of these items to our program, especially as you celebrate and gather with family this upcoming winter break. Many thanks! Some suggested items include, but are not limited to:

1. buttons
2. fabric scraps
3. water/juice bottle caps
4. metal frozen juice lids
5. detergent/dish soap caps
6. old frames
7. wood scraps
8. feathers
9. pompoms
10. metal odds and ends (e.g., discarded keys)
11. hardware (e.g., nuts, bolts, washers, screws)
12. plastic tubing
13. paper tubes
14. ribbon scraps
15. fronts of used greeting cards
16. cardboard packaging
17. large appliance boxes
18. broken costume jewelry
19. wine bottle corks
20. beads
21. elastics
22. egg cartons
23. plastic hangers
24. interesting stones
25. yarn
26. felt
27. sponge
28. seeds
29. straws
30. cotton balls
31. Q-tips
32. clothespins
33. shells
34. packing peanuts
35. bubble wrap
36. small, plastic containers
37. plastic scoops
38. plastic/metal spoons and forks
39. wallpaper scraps
40. puzzle pieces
41. popsicle sticks
42. marker caps
43. plastic berry baskets
44. large aluminum cans
45. glass baby food jars

Photos on the Light Table

The children have been very interested in exploring pictures of themselves this week. We thought it would be interesting to photocopy our photos onto overhead transparencies for some exploration on the light table. They copied very well!

The children were drawn to the activity and were eager to first find themselves and then find a friend. It was interesting to listen to their conversations as they noted the differences between colour and black and white photos (e.g., "I can't see what colour your hair is in this picture. My eyes are blue, but not in this picture.") and sorted the photos based on common characteristics (e.g., gender, hair length).

We are hoping to add blank overheads to the centre to that the children can practice writing each other's name and matching names to photos.

Meaningful, Playful Moments

During our play block children have the opportunity to explore any centre of their choice including drama, visual arts, building, fine motor practice, reading, writing, science, and snack. Here are some moments from this week!


Monday, December 9, 2013


The children met today's snowfall with such excitement! We went sledding on Mt. Suzuki! 

This was such a great activity for encouraging cooperation among the children! The worked together to be successful in every aspect of this activity - carrying the sleds from the play yard to the hill, propelling themselves down the hill in the sled, and carrying the sled up to the top again. 

The children were full of smiles! The joy in this activity was evident throughout and it was exciting for many to tell us that this was the first time they had gone sledding!

This activity was also great exercise. The children were responsible for carrying their sleds back to the top of the hill after sledding down. This was great for gross motor development (and keeping warm in the chilly weather).

We can't wait for more snow to fall so we can do this again!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Shape Scavenger Hunt

The children have expressed an interest in finding shapes in our environment. We thought it would be fun to go on a shape scavenger hunt around our school.

The children worked in pairs and used a clipboard to keep a record of what shapes they observed around the school.  Many used tallies to record their findings. 

We were amazed at where the children noticed shapes!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Shaving Cream Building

We put out two materials on the table today and were curious to see what the children would do. Shaving cream and blocks are an unlikely combination but 'oh so' exciting!

Although this can be a messy activity, the  shaving cream easily washes from skin and clothing. The children generated many hypotheses for why they thought the blocks stuck together so well with the shaving cream. 

This is a fun activity for your child to do in the tub at bath time if they enjoyed it at school and are eager to try it again!

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