Monday, March 24, 2014

Spring Fever

"That one was coughing when his parent put him on the bus," informed the bus monitor and extra set of hands for our classroom. Accompanying his cough was a thick green runny nose. I get that some parents are oblivious but his in particular are employees of a school district. They should know better.

We made the call, which came as no surprise to his mom, and he was promptly picked up.

Next in our time of circle was another little boy who was way off kilter, whiney and also sporting a runny nose. Again we made the call and it wasn't long before he too was picked up by his mother.

Our numbers were dwindling in a hurry. The responsible parents kept the majority of our preschoolers at home, and the remaining children were on the verge. We had some coughing and looking worn, one told us she had a headache as we continued to wipe noses.

It wasn't any different in our afternoon class, the kids were dropping like flies.

I'm hoping with our up coming Spring break the kids will regain their health and come back ready to play.

As for me I'm going to continue to take Emergen-C, Zicam and wash my hands so I can enjoy a week off without the coughing, sneezing and runny nose.

Wish me luck!

Here's what I do get to enjoy:

Taking the girls potty:  One little girl, while sitting on the toilet, was listening to the others tinkle. She piped up and said I hear……(saying their name) She repeated it again when she heard another one going. When she finally went she shouted, "I hear ME!!"

As they come out of the restroom the kids wash their hands. We continually remind them to push up their sleeves so they don't get wet.  Wearing a sun dress with straps a smarty looked at me and said, "My sleeves are already rolled up."

Using the number chart we count the number of kids we have attending, this particular day we only had 7.  We counted 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 then again in Spanish, uno, dos, tres, cuatro, cinco, seis, siete.  Our little blonde, blue eyed girl jumped up as said, "what about Ocho?"

On the flip side while having snack, a little hispanic girl requested some fish crackers:  I want eight.

As we sing our opening song 'Who's come to school today?' we'll pass a mirror around as each person says their name. The kids really take pride in the fact that they know everyones name and makes sure they are the first to shout it out as the mirror changes hands:  We had a person observing so we included her in the song. Once the mirror was in her hands we began to introduce her as a visitor and was about to say her name when a child jumped up, making sure she was the first one, and shouted boldly, VISTOR!!!

One of our songs is called "Mr. Alligator" We have  a hand puppet that 5 little monkey velcro to and a alligator puppet as well. One by one the five naughty monkeys who tease Mr. Alligator are eaten. We'll have the kids use their arms acting as the jaws of the alligator and say 'SNAP'  when the alligator puppet grabs a monkey.  The kids love this song but we have one little boy who feels the need to protect the only little girl in the class. He'll make sure he sits by her as the song is being acted out.
She's not at all frightened  but we won't tell him that.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Avoiding confrontation


He stood pointing his finger at her delicate nose.

Remember to share, we reminded him.

He turned his attention back to the train set, but it wasn't long before he scolded her again for playing alongside him.


There is plenty for everyone, you need to share. She can play too.

A few minutes later the frustrated little girl stood by one of the teachers and began to tell her in her own form of babble he wasn't sharing.  Because we already knew the situation, we understood what she was trying to say.

'Go use your words and tell him to share.' The teacher encouraged her.

'No' she said timidly.

'It's OK, you can do it.'

'I can't.'

'Why not?'

As plain as day, she replied, 'Because my mouth hurts.'

Monday, October 28, 2013

Dress up

It's the time of year where costumes come out and kids get ready for Halloween. Batman, Spiderman, Snow White and every other kind of Princess and super hero will swarm the neighborhoods collecting treats which, goes without saying, will keep them on a sugar high for weeks to come.
Our Preschool also partakes in the Halloween festivities. 
If you were to visit our classroom you would see spiders, pumpkins and sweet candy decorating the walls.
You would also see us dancing and singing to Halloween songs.
My all time favorite is: Witches Brew by Hap Palmer

 Besides the songs and artwork, the kids also enjoy dressing up in the costumes we have available.
You see, real girls aren't afraid to wear football uniforms and play construction worker…..provided she has her handbag, that is...

We also have another little girl who comes dressed up everyday with matching shoes no matter the outfit.

I believe her mother is creating a shoe…

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Who's on first?

One of the options on the job chart is to be the 'kid counter.'  The child who chooses to count the kids stands in front of the other children, sitting in a circle, and by starting with himself he'll put his hand on his own head and count, 'One' then proceed around the circle touching each child on the head one at a time while continuing to count out loud.

Some of the children have mastered this task without the aid of a teacher but there are a few who still need assistance.

One boy in particular chose to count the kids as his job. Enthusiastically he jumped from his chair and took his position in front of the other children. The teacher conducting circle helped place his hand on his head and proceeded to count, 'One......'

Usually the child would repeat after the teacher but this little boy continued....'two' as he touched his own head.

The teacher tried again. Placing his hand on his head she began...'one' and the boy said, 'two'

She's like, 'say one' and he goes 'two' so another teacher decided to help and took his hand.

 She placed it on his head and said, 'one' then as she had him touch another child she said 'two' hoping he would catch on but he said, 'three.'

She tried again. With his hand on his head she said, 'One' he'd say, 'Two'

It was quite comical but we're trying not to laugh.

He seemed to have the number sequence down, it was the concept of applying it the counting process that had him stumped.

Finally with full assistance she placed his hand on his head, and said, 'One' then immediatley had him touch another child and said, 'Two' before he had a chance to interject. She continued assisting him with the third child.

After he got passed the third one he caught on and continued to count the rest of the class.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Hitting the wall

When we use the term 'Hitting the wall' we use it figuratively not literally, well sometimes it's literal. Like when we're walking with the preschoolers down the hall and someone gets distracted by not watching where their going, they can in fact hit a wall, or a door, or what ever is in their path. But really we say it when a youngster is just plum wore out, has nothing left to give and enters...the zone.

We have  a youngster who falls into that category. One who still requires a nap and cannot make it the two and a half hours we offer. He gets this glazed look across his face, the rim of his eyes turn red and he is just flat out done with the day.

He's our little guy who has a Cochlear implant, suffers from Cerebral Palsy and has a shunt on one side of his head. Despite his disability he's very bright and can hold his own in almost any situation........until 2 o'clock when his young three year old body decides game over, it's nap time.

The first time we experienced  our little man 'hitting the wall'  we wrote his mama a note in his journal, which is sent back and forth daily, telling her what a great day he had up until he, 'hit the wall.'

His poor mom was frantic when she read that her son had 'hit a wall' she didn't waste a single moment calling us up, "What, he hit a wall, what do you mean he hit a wall?"

 Her concern was valid as his balance is awkward and he does fall on an occasion, but after explaining to her it's just an expression used when he's done, tired, wore out and ready to go home, we all shared a pretty good laugh.

Friday, November 9, 2012

The ants go marching one by one hurrah, hurrah....

With Fall among us we've been doing all sorts of leaf activities. We took the kids on a little nature walk to collect leaves so we can do our leaf rubbing art. You know, where you put the leaf under a piece of paper then rub the top with crayons. Still to this day, I love to watch the outline of the underlying leaf emerge. It's like magic.

We tried a new activity by taking a piece of tagboard cut in the shape of a leaf then painted orange  Karo syrup on it. When it dries it has the appearance of a shiny shellack coating. It's rather amazing.

The kids had fun with the syrup, smearing it, getting sticky and actually tasting it at the same time. Once they were done,  we set their masterpieces on a counter to dry.

A few hours later, after the children have long since gone, we noticed one of the Karo coated leaves were infested with ants. Little micro-tiny black ants. Where they came from, we have no idea. We've never had a problem with ants before and we use all kinds of food based activities for artwork and sensory exploration.

What once were masterpieces of art are now trash, as I couldn't throw those away fast enough.  I Bundled them up in a plastic garbage bag then out of the classroom they went.

There were a few late comers to the leaf party looking to take part in the sweet syrup, but were soon eliminated with a squish of my finger.

Hopefully, after the custodian sprays we'll be rid of those pesky ants for good and, will have learned a lesson in Karo syrup art.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Body Part Game

Touch your finger to your ear (repeated by children) touch your wrist to your nose (repeated by children) touch your elbow to your knee, touch your knee to your ankle, touch your wrist to your chin."The song continues with a pop-rock tune as the preschool children follow along dancing and imitating the movements provided by the teachers.

Greg and Steve have been around for years with their educational music designed to target young children which is why the preschool staff uses their Cd's as part of our music time.

This particular song brings a smile to my face every time we dance to it, not just because it's a fun and interactive but because of a couple of our children this year have body part issues.

Let me explain. We have one little boy who, due to a type of cancer, has had one of his eyes removed and replaced with a prosthetic one. To look at him straight on one would never know. His mother sends him in glasses, not for his vision but for protection. His lenses are not prescription. When we first met her, as well as her son, she mentioned in a nonchalant way, he has popped his eye out before. She instructed us if it was to happen in class we can just put it back in.

At this point I thinking, 'Lady if it happens on my shift I'll be calling you." Can you imagine an eye rolling on the classroom floor with preschoolers around. "Hey kids, stop and listen, we need to find 'Johnny's' eye.

Then there's the other little boy who is deaf without his cochlear implant. His implant is much like a hearing aid but with a magnetic device that attaches to one side of his head.

He's been known to remove it and if that being the case, I'm not afraid to put it back on. The only danger is if the magnetic touches the other side of his head where his shunt resides. It's a tricky situation.

So as we dance and move to 'The body part game' I'm hoping we don't have to 'Put your eye in the socket, remove the implant from your shunt.......'

"That's the way we play the body part game."