Hay Bales in the Playground

Hay Bales in the Playground

We are always looking for new things to add to our playground. Early in October, Miss Marta had the idea to add bales of hay to switch it up for the fall. At first we piled the hay for climbing and gave the children the opportunity to explore it.    The next week, I rearranged the hay to make little huts or crawl spaces. I added pumpkins, play dishes, and dolls. We decided to call it the pumpkin patch.  The…

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Why I Let Children Eat Dessert First

Why I Let Children Eat Dessert First

     Conventional wisdom has taught us that children have to be told to eat their meals before they can have dessert. Instead of teaching children healthy eating habits, however, I believe this rule can actually foster an unhealthy relationship with food, and creates potential conflict where none needs to exist.     Sweets Should Not Be A Reward; Healthy Food Is Not A Chore           Making children eat their healthy food before they can have their sweets causes them…

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Cooking in the Outdoor Kitchen with Herbs and Sparkles

Cooking in the Outdoor Kitchen with Herbs and Sparkles

    We use sand and water a lot in our outdoor sensory table. Last week I noticed that the children were collecting leaves and grass from the yard to add to the water in the table to make “soup”. I decided to set up the sensory table on the porch, where there is more space for the children to work, and to add a few new sensory items that would expand the cooking experience.   I had just purchased…

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Fun Ways to Use Pool Noodles in the Playground

Fun Ways to Use Pool Noodles in the Playground

It has been so long since I last wrote a blog post! I recently attended the CAEYC annual conference in Pasadena. I’m inspired to start blogging again so that I can share some of the wonderful inspiration I received there. One of my favorite workshops was about promoting children’s physical activity. The presenters gave us tons of good ideas to get kids moving in fun ways. They also pointed out that all of the materials they use are cheap and…

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Lots of Pumpkins!

Lots of Pumpkins!

Last week I went to Sprouts Farmers Market to get a couple of pumpkins for our classroom. They were so cheap I ended up getting about twenty pumpkins and gourds in all different sizes and colors. Since then, we have been using them in all areas of the classroom and even in the playground. Here are some of our favorite ways to use pumpkins at preschool. 1. Pumpkin Hammering We hammered golf tees into one of the bigger pumpkins with…

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Some Halloween Ideas from the Two’s Room

Some Halloween Ideas from the Two’s Room

Here are some things we did last October in the two’s classroom. Pumpkin Science Center We put out different pumpkins and gourds along with pumpkin seeds, magnifying glasses, bowls, and rulers for the children to explore.  Pumpkin Predictions  Each of the children chose one of the pumpkins from the science center. We measured and weighed each pumpkin and I wrote down how the children described their pumpkins. Then each child predicted what they thought would be inside the pumpkins before…

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Fall Leaf Necklaces

Fall Leaf Necklaces

Autumn is here and, although we live in San Diego where not many trees lose their leaves in the fall, we were able to find a good number of very pretty leaves during a walk around the neighborhood.  After our walk, we used plastic needles to sew the leaves together.  The children asked to add beads to their necklaces.  Beautiful!

Loose Parts In the Playground

Loose Parts In the Playground

I’ve been away from blogging for several months now mostly because our preschool, Aspen Leaf Preschool, has been very busy. We’ve been growing so quickly and will soon be opening a third classroom! My classroom has also been busy learning lots of new things. In the next couple of blog posts I want to share some of our favorite activities from the past few months. Loose Parts in the Playground Loose parts are items that can be used in a…

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Independent Art Center

Independent Art Center

Our classroom has always had a center for independent art. It is always stocked with paper, glue, markers, and scissors. I never put anything else in this center because I was afraid that the children wouldn’t know how to use other art supplies on their own without making a huge mess. I always saved paint and other messy supplies for project time when a teacher would be supervising their use. The problem with this was that it didn’t always give…

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Dinosaur Footprint Painting

Dinosaur Footprint Painting

As part of our dinosaur theme this week, we made dinosaur footprints by walking our toy dinosaurs through “mud” (black and brown paint) and across paper. Of course this quickly became finger painting. In the end, we had to give the dinosaurs a bath to wash off all that mud.   Posted with Blogsy