Halloween Fun & Safety!

Hi!

Today I’d like to discuss a bit about the upcoming fun day we all refer to as Halloween! To a lot of us, this one day out of the year signals one of a handful of holidays we have which entails lots of candy.  The thing that is great about Halloween is the wonderful creative element with costumes and makeup. Now, some people love the traditional scary aspects of the holiday. (And remember if you believe in any kind of religion whatever “evil” you associate with Halloween originates from your perspective religion and should not be transferred to others who do not share your specific beliefs.) Others love the cute things that have popped up in the last 20 years or the TV and Movie characters that have trickled down to this popular holiday or candy day.  The one thing that should be on all of our minds as this day quickly approaches is that no matter what we each believe and value, children are children from zero to nineteen.  So, if you see a group of teenagers dressed up in costumes and trick-or-treating, that is great!  We want the teens out there to be safe and enjoy this day along with all the other children.

Of course, not every family out there believes trick-or-treating is something their children should participate in.  This is especially true if you don’t live in an area that is safe or a community that just doesn’t feel the need to doll out cavity-causing candy. So, parties are the norm with a lot of families.  Again, if you know where your children are as responsible adult parents or guardians then your children can enjoy a fun and safe Halloween. Whether it be trick-or-treating or at a party, children of all ages should be allowed this one day of the year to have a lot of fun in their communities.  This is a way for communities to come together and all be a positive part of every child out there having a huge smile on their faces and the pure elated joy of the whole experience!  And, why deny older children the opportunity to see such creativity with the many ways people love to decorate the outsides of their homes for this special evening of the year.

One more quick reminder.  Please remember if you see a teal or aqua colored pumpkin while out trick-or-treating, that means allergy safe candy is being dolled out.  Nut, dairy, and gluten allergies should fall under the teal pumpkin. If you want to provide for both children with allergies and children without please make sure the candies are completely separate and never stored in the same area of your home.  Also, make sure the bowl you serve the cany in has not housed candies containing allergy-inducing ingredients.  Even though the candy comes individually wrapped we can never be too careful.

Please wear light reflective clothing, bring flashlights or other glowing devices along with your candy bags.  Parents and guardians please drive or walk with your children to make sure they are safe every step of the way.  The last thing any child needs to think about or worry about is their safety when engaged in so much fun.  Also, avoid houses or apartments with the porch light turned off. Most likely those people do not participate in this holiday or they are off doing what you all are doing.  

Be safe, have fun and include teenagers because they are still children and deserve to enjoy this holiday until they are unable to due to being an adult.  Let kids be kids until they have to grow up.  Being an adult will last a lifetime, being a kid does not.

Tips from The Marigold School of Early Learning: A Reggio Emilia inspired preschool.

 

Mud Kitchen!

101_5663

Well after months of seeing a ton of wonderful postings on Mud Kitchens I decided to try making my own! 🙂

101_2131  101_2141 First came purchasing all the supplies I thought I’d need.  This required two trips because I needed more screws than I originally thought. Then I moved everything outdoors and applied two coats of waterproof stain.  I let that cure for 24 hours in between coats.  One thing I learned is next time to make sure I purchase some boards to place all the pieces on as I coat them, so the grass does not adhere to the sticky surface and create a hairy mud kitchen like it did this time! 🙂 Oh, well, a little texture never hurt. 🙂

101_2147 101_2150 I assembled the mud kitchen in different ways until I found a good height combination.

101_2152 101_2153

For each step, I used my electric hand-held drill and some Ikea tools.  It took about three days in total to put together, stain, cure, stain, cure and assemble.  After placing a backboard and an extra shelf for stability and storage I was ready to load it up and see how it would handle some tubs with dishes and some flower pots for loose parts.  All put together I thought it turned out pretty functional.  I then placed the unit onto a blanket and slid it along the floor till my sister could help me carry it outside.  I’m sorry, but for now, I don’t have any pics without my students interacting with it so I will post what it looks like outside later on.

If any of you have made your own without the help of your husbands, boyfriends or handymen, please let me know.  And if you care to share a photo or two that would be great too! 🙂

101_1859 Walk, Ride a bike or drive to The Marigold School of Early Learning! 🙂

Heidi Scott has over twenty years teaching experience in grades preschool through third and holds a Bachelor’s in Human Development with a Focus on Early Childhood Education and a Master’s In Teaching grades preschool – eighth grades.

Join Our Community!

101_0213 Children ages three going on four are ready for a big responsibility, and that is black line drawing with watercolor painting.  By modeling how to use a black sharpie with my students I conveyed a powerful message that I trust them with this important writing/ art tool. 

101_0126

 

 

 

 

 

 

101_1188 

101_1195 Rose petals are a wonderful part of nature that naturally plays into a child’s artistic expressions.  Another language in which children can communicate their ideas and creative abilities.  Cardstock paper with colored pencils and paint glue made for very textured and colorful creations!  Open-ended learning is the best.  I love watching, listening, questioning and following the children’s lead.

 

 

Using bingo dots to create houses for the cars.  And using recyclable containers and wood sticks as a drum set.  Mathematical concepts merging with dramatic play and musical experimentation.  Children inspire children.

101_0714 We took a chance and planted some buck beans that we often play with inside our wooden sensory drawer.  Wow, all five beans in each container sprouted! Seeing nature take root literally is the best way to introduce scientific concepts to children. 

 

101_1182 Cutting more scrap paper to add to the colorful paint water.  Cutting, stirring and color experimentation further’s the reality that children are scientists with endlessly curious minds.  

101_1859101_1858

Looking for a quality Reggio Emilia Inspired Preschool where your child is allowed to plan, explore, discover and construct through a wide variety of ways?  Look no further!  Join The Marigold School of Early Learning this fall for the 2018-2019 school year!

Heidi Scott has over twenty years experience as a Teacher and Educator.  She has earned a Bachelor’s In Human Development with a Focus on Early Childhood Education and a Master’s In Teaching grades preschool through eighth and participates in ongoing professional development classes.

101_2720

 

 Email or call the school to schedule a tour!  

 

 

 

 

Email: marigoldschoolofearlylearning@gmail.com

Phone: 360-957-6307

 

The journey not the product

100_6569

As adults, we often enjoy children’s artwork for not only the adorable inexperience it shows but the aesthetic qualities too.  However, there are times when we want a lovely product instead of realizing the rich quality of the process a child went through to create whatever is on that piece of paper or however a sculpture may appear. In the early years of development, the artwork is not necessarily for aesthetic purposes, it is a complex investigation of colors, textures, shapes, and sizes.  The artwork through its process is also very much a part of psychology in which the child is in the moment calming the brain, calming any anxieties, and recharging energy.  Children take time naturally to process information and we see this often when children become quiet and push all other activity from their focus.  They may not answer a question an adult or another child poses, because their brain is working hard at interpreting a large or small amount of new information.  That new information could be a flower they saw on their way to school.  That flower at first was a bud and now is in full bloom.  The child has noticed the changes and these are not small changes to that child’s mind, they are huge and complex changes because that flower the child observed is life as it grows, develops over time.  To an adult that flower may be insignificant, yet for the child that is part of a strong foundation for all future learning.

100_6779

When children explore colors they are investigating mixing, creating and experimenting with a variety of combinations they can come up with.  Sometimes they will have a plan in mind for what they are creating, but often times there is no plan because this is a truly kinesthetic/ tactile and cognitive process that does not need a plan.  The process children go through with their investigations with artwork is not meant to be “something” unless that child wants it to represent a person, place or thing.  And if a child chooses for their artwork to be representational know that what is represented will not stay the same.  In one moment the painting above could be a house or a dog or nothing.  As a teacher I will often ask questions like, “can you tell me about your painting?”, “Can we read your drawing?”, “Tell me more.”.  If a child’s intent was for the painting or drawing to represent something they will elaborate and tell me what it is in that moment only to change it to something else in the next moment, which then leads them to storytelling or sharing a life event they experienced.  In essence, an opportunity to discuss their artwork may simply open a door to connect with a child and the experiences they have in life.  Communication, listening, speaking are all a part of a rich literacy foundation with artwork as the vehicle or catalyst.

100_7581

Scribble to symbolic form is a natural and complex developmental process that should not be rushed.  Children in their own time will shift to consistent symbolic form when their minds are ready.  Please do not dismiss or belittle a child’s scribbles.  Scribble form is what every single human being started with, you and I are no different than children today that scribble.  This stage of development is a natural process that must be experienced in order for the child’s brain to aquire new information that allows them to move on to symbolic form.  Symbolic form means that we, adults and children recognize the artwork as being “something”.  That “something” will be flexible and fluid, not static.  The child may choose to say it represents a face, a cat, a car etc.  We must be respectful of the importance that this artistic work is not about the end product but rather the process or journey the child went through at they created this peice of work.

101_3833 101_4687

With a Reggio Emilia Inspired environment, I am able to integrate letters, numbers, shapes, textures, concepts and academic content into the emerging curriculum through the form of “play”.  “Play” encompasses all the complexities of learning for young developing minds.  I accept and respect all the work my students engage in.  I do not rush them, I listen and observe how they interact with each other, individually and with the environment.  Children come to school with a rich vocabulary base and a large platform of experience from their home life.  What they’ve learned from their respective families is often times extended upon in class.  Yet, that is not always the case for every child.  Some children are able to limit the knowledge they share from their family.  This means that some children have a mind that is internally driven to explore and learn new information or explore information that is the same, yet presented differently at school.  Other children will share everything they experience at home and in the world at school.  I look at this as natural boundaries children are expressing and I respect each child’s abilities and desires to share whatever amount they wish. Please respect the process and the complex journey of young minds as they grow.  

101_1511

Join The Marigold School of Early Learning and allow your child to grow and learn at their own pace.  Enjoy the early years of development and watching your child blossom!

Walk, ride a bike or drive to The Marigold School Of Early Learning! Morning Preschool Specifically Designed for Children Ages 3-5!

Heidi Scott is an experienced Master level Teacher