Posted On: 01/04/2018
By: Kaitlyn Deis
It is hard to believe that we have already rang in the New Year! We hope that 2018 is off to a wonderful start for your family and that your holiday season was filled with fond and joyous memories of loved ones and friends. Here is a look of how your children wound down their month of December…
We welcomed a new friend, Carter, to our Elm Room family! There was much buzz and excitement around his arrival. We noticed his name appearing around the room on his work drawer, work tag, bathroom bin and his cubby and that made us curious to meet him! When Carter’s first day came, so many of us were eager help him learn the rhythm of our day. We happily showed him around the classroom, being sure to point out the home of Finn the fish, the snack area and a few of our favorite works along the way. We are excited to see how new friendships continue to unfold with Carter!
The cold nip in the air reminds us that winter is surely upon us! As the days turn bitter cold (when the temperature, including wind, chill does not get above 20ᵒ F), you will notice that our morning routine starts in the gym. Right as you arrive at 8:30am, please have your child drop their belongings off at their cubby, change their shoes, grab their water bottle and join us for fun in the gym. On these days, we will spend about 1 hour letting our energy out, heading back to the classroom by 9:45am at the latest. Please note, some days this morning gym time is the only opportunity that we will have to play for the entire day. We only have an afternoon gym time on every 3rd day, rotating with the other two primary classrooms. Your children really love running, using hula-hoops, tumbling on the mats, practicing yoga, using walking stilts to balance, throwing and catching balls, building with blocks, and coming up with their own fun and creative ways to play. We know that getting out the door in the morning can be tough at times but please keep this schedule in mind on cold winter days to ensure your child has a chance for gross motor play.
Despite all of the fun that can be had in the gym, we certainly begin to get antsy and feel the effects of being cooped up inside so any chance that we can go out to play is a plus! When the weather is not too frigid (when the temperature, including wind chill, is above 20ᵒ F) for us to make it outside to play, we will bundle up and enjoy our time the best we can. Sometimes this means that we only play outside for 30 minutes or less but a little time to run around and get some fresh air is better than none at all. Please help your child to stay warm by making certain that they have a winter jacket, waterproof snow pants, insulated winter boots, a winter hat and waterproof gloves or mittens at school every day to be prepared for when we are able to go outside for play. We have experienced the joy of snow with the small accumulations thus far and are looking forward to more snowy adventures in the coming weeks!
This time of year brings much to celebrate! We learned about the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah and talked about the menorah, dreidels, gelt, and latkes. Heather was even kind enough to make latkes and brought them in for us to try at food tasting. They were delicious and we loved them! Many children shared that Hanukkah is celebrated in their home and were excited to talk about what they do with their family. We were also introduced to the traditions of Christmas in Mexico, Iran, China, Sweden, Iraq, Spain, and Norway from the book Christmas around the World by Emily Kelley. We were curious to learn about new customs and were sure to point out the traditions that were similar to what some of us celebrate in our homes!
With each passing day, we are learning new concepts, refining our skills, building independence and strengthening friendships. We would love for parents to be able to see these experiences unfold for themselves and invite you to observe in the classroom! Please keep in mind that it will take us some time to transition back into our routine following winter break. But be on the lookout for more information by the end of the month for the opportunity to visit the classroom for 30 minutes (directly after drop off) to observe our morning routine!
As always, thank you for sharing your children with us each day! It is our pleasure to learn and grow with them!
Peace and Love,
Khaliha, Heather, Kamrie and Kathryn