Winter Festival Preparations

We had a very exciting week: meeting Santa and taking the kids picture with him. Most students loved the experience! Next week we will be reviewing the Winter theme and rehearsing for our Winter Wonderland festival that will take place on Friday, December 14th at Candy Gum party place. Remember to dress your child appropriately for that day.

Also Emilia Contrini’s birthday is on December 13th we will be having her as Superkid on that Thursday.

In our creative department, this week we are going to work with the following:

Techniques: cutting, painting, pasting, drawing, pressing, shaking

Media: plates, construction paper, sponges, foamy, pine trees, stamps

Concepts: paste, paint, brush, inside, insert, press, push, cold, warm light, dark, presents, up

Vocabulary: reindeer, snowman, snow, snowflake, elfs, christmas tree, white, I wish,  cold, warm, presents, twinkle, teddy bear, jingle, bell

 

 

Here are some recent pictures of our classroom activities:

 

Can’t Wait for Friday!

Dear Parents,
The kids have been very excited lately with all of the things that are going on. Last week each student told us what they want for Christmas and they also made a drawing of it. They later sent their wishes to the Santa with helium balloons and they really liked it!

This week we also worked on the handmade gifts you will be receiving this week. Some part of it was made as a group together to promote socialization and team work. Finally, we have practiced for the Winter Festival and we can’t wait for next Friday!!!
Some of the vocabulary words we have been learning this week are: reindeer, antlers, sleigh, boots, stockings, presents, Christmas tree and ornaments. It is useful to us if you reinforce these words at home with your children, as they get more language practice.
Enjoy your week !

Building Responsibility through Chores

Every parent wants his children to grow up to be responsible, contributing members of society. But before they head out on their own and make their mark on the world, our kids need to learn how to be responsible, contributing members of the family household. Household chores are training exercises for real life. They are essential in helping them grow up in an unselfish and well-adjusted way and shaping them into fully-functioning adults.

Chores give children hands-on training in the basic life skills they’ll need to thrive when they head out on their own, while also developing crucial traits like hard work, responsibility, and delayed gratification. Expecting your kids to do chores from an early age helps shape them into self-sufficient, responsible, well-rounded and well-adjusted adults.

Manual tasks and higher learning go hand-in-hand. Doing chores has been shown to develop children’s large and fine motor skills.This in turn makes them smarter. Studies show that young children who take part in hands-on activities, like chores, develop the parts of the brain that are needed for more abstract thinking like reading, writing, and math.

Start early.  The most important thing you can do to help ensure your kids do their chores is to start them as early as possible  ideally  when they’re just 18 months old. Psychologists  have observed that children naturally want to start helping at around this age. Michael Tomasello notes in his book Why We Cooperate that children as young as 18 months who see an adult having trouble opening a door or picking up a dropped clothespin will immediately lend their little hand in assistance.

The main thing that squelches this nascent desire to pitch in before it has a chance to fully take root is that kids are unhelpfully helpful. Their “assistance” makes the chore take a lot longer, and they often mess things up, leading parents to just want to do it themselves and quickly get it over with.

Fight the urge to shoo your toddler away when he begins to naturally volunteer to help with chores. Yes, it will take longer to unload your dishwasher, but it’s much easier to instill the chore habit when your kids are young than when they’re surly teenagers. Time invested now will reap rich dividends down the road.

Begin giving your kids age-appropriate chores as soon as you notice them wanting to help and add to that list as they get older and can handle more complex tasks. A lot of parents have very low expectations of what their children can handle chore-wise — but even the littlest kids can really surprise you. Give them new tasks to try, and if they can’t do them, reintroduce them a little ways down the road.

Here’s a good breakdown of age-appropriate chores for your kiddos:

Ages 18 months to 3 years old

  • Pick up books and toys
  • Put clothes in hamper
  • Help unload the dishwasher (take out any sharp utensils first!)
  • Help sort and load laundry
  • Help put away groceries
  • Help clean up spills
  • Water flowers
  • Put a sock on their hand and let them dust tables and door knobs

 

Ages 4 to 5 

Any of the above chores, and:

  • Help make the bed
  • Bring things from the car to house
    • Help set and clean the table
    • Pick weeds
    • Help with leaf raking
    • Help with simple tasks in meal-preparation

Ages 6 to 7

Any of the above chores, and:

  • Make their bed on their own
  • Vacuum rooms
  • Keep own room clean and tidy
  • Empty indoor trash cans
  • Put their laundry away
  • Sweep garage
  • Sort laundry

Ages 8 to 9

Any of the above chores, and:

  • Take pet for walk
  • Make simple snacks and meals
  • Clean the toilet
  • Load and unload dishwasher
  • Collect garbage and take it to the curb

Ages 10 and older:

Any of the above chores, and:

  • Wash car
  • Clean kitchen
  • Change bedsheets
  • Wash windows
  • Mow yard (with adult supervision at first)
  • Clean shower
  • Make a complete meal

Make it routine. Kids thrive on routine. If you want chore-doing to stick when they’re young, make it a routine part of life.

Intrinsic motivation comes from within — you want to do something because you enjoy it, it interests you, or it’s in line with your values. Extrinsic motivation comes from outside the person — either someone is  making you do something, or you’re motivated by a reward like stickers or money. The problem with extrinsic motivation is that the satisfaction gained from a task moves from the task itself to the reward for the task. Thus, if the reward is taken away, the behavior ceases. Studies have shown that once children are offered a reward for an activity, their interest in that activity declines.

Intrinsic motivation leads to a greater sense of well-being and is fed by the fulfillment of 3 needs:

  • Competence. Sense that you can control the outcome of something and the feeling of mastery.
  • Relatedness. The desire to interact, connect with, and care for others.
  • Autonomy. The feeling of being the director of your own actions.

Paying kids money to do chores does not meet these needs nearly as well as expecting them to do chores simply because they are part of the family and need to be a contributing member of it.

A better approach is to expect kids to do chores from an early age simply because that’s what’s expected of them as members of the family. Mom and dad don’t get paid for their chores, so neither do they. This will build their competence and relatedness and thus intrinsic motivation from an early age.

December Newsletter

OBJECTIVES

Vocabulary: All the months of the year, happy new year, reindeer, antlerns, hoof, shake, in and out.
Language Patterns: I wish … , we wish … It’s cold/hot/warm, I wish…, This is/These are
Books The Polar Express, I Can’t Wait Until Christmas, Santa’s Helpers, My Christmas Treasury, Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa’s Toy Shop, Wee Mouse Christmas, Santa’s Sleigh.
Concepts: Hot /Cold Light/Dark Asleep/Awake Apart/Together Giving/Receiving
Action Verbs: Give, serve, get, sing, dance, jump. / Make, sing, dance, turn, hop, give, get, laugh.
Colors: Green, Red, introduce White.
Math Skills: Identify the numbers from 1 to 5
Science discoveries: Explore with light and shadows. Work with different sounds. Compare temperatures. Chemical reactions with heat and temperature
Recognizing sounds: bells, train, whistle, snoring, etc.

Fine Motor Skills: Practice stirring, mixing, pouring. Twisting and tying chenille stems.
Physical Development Objectives: Following rhythm patterns. Dancing coordination while following motions and rehearsing for Winter Festival. Other exercises: 3 step obstacle courses, jumping and kicking.

Fine Arts Skills: Use the gift idea your class will be working on to make a list of the skills, media and techniques the kids will be learning to make them.
Music: Focus on rhythm sequences. Winter Wonderland songs: Jingle Bells, Reindeer Hokey Pokey, Months of the Year

Value of the Month: Generosity.

Calendar dates and reminders:
Wednesday, Dec 5 Santa is coming to Toddler Tree! Individual photo session with Baby Madero in our gym
Friday, Dec 7 Balloons to Santa during our recess time from the playground
Friday, Dec 14 Winter Wonderland Festival @ Candy Gum
Wednesday, Dec 19 Last day of school
Classes resume: Monday, January 7, 2013

 

December 2012 Newsletter

Winter Wonderland

OBJECTIVES

Knowledge

Vocabulary         Snow, Snowman, Jolly, Soul, Happy, Corn-Cob Pipe, Button, Scarf, Mittens, Coal, Fairytale, Magic, Silk, Hat, Tree, Wish, Stars, Bright and Santa

Language Patterns          I wish … , we wish … It’s cold/hot/warm, I wish…, This is/These are

Books    The Polar Express, I Can’t Wait Until Christmas, Santa’s Helpers, My Christmas Treasury, Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa’s Toy Shop, Wee Mouse Christmas, Santa’s Sleigh.

Concepts             Hot /Cold Light/Dark Asleep/Awake Apart/Together Giving/Receiving

Action Verbs      Give, serve, get, sing, dance, jump. / Make, sing, dance, turn, hop, give, get, laugh.

Color     Green, Red, introduce White.

Math Skills          Review circle and square. Introduce number 2.

Science discoveries         Explore with light and shadows. Work with different sounds. Compare temperatures.

Chemical reactions with heat and temperature

Recognizing sounds: bells, train, whistle, snoring, etc.

Motor Skills

Fine Motor Skills               Practice stirring, mixing, pouring. Twisting and tying chenille stems.

Physical Development Objective              Following rhythm patterns. Dancing coordination while following motions and rehearsing for Winter Festival. Other exercises: 3 step obstacle courses, jumping and kicking.

Fine Arts

Fine Arts Skills   Practice the use of their handprints in new fabrics. Learn how to press and trace straight lines with the use of different paint brushes.

Music    Focus on rhythm sequences using different songs and rhymes. Program songs: Frosty the Snowman, He’s Got the Whole World and This Little Light of Mine.

Socio-emotional

Value of the Month        Generosity.

 

Calendar dates and reminders:

Wednesday, Dec 5 Santa is coming to Toddler Tree! Individual photo session with Baby Madero in our gym

Friday, Dec 7 Balloons to Santa during our recess time from the playground

Friday, Dec 14 Winter Wonderland Festival @ Candy Gum

Wednesday, Dec 19 Last day of school

Classes resume: Monday, January 7, 2013

 

December Newsletter

OBJECTIVES

Vocabulary

Twinkle, star, high, diamond, jingle bells, swing, sleigh ride, shake, side to side , up and down, turning, teddy bear, train, santa claus, Christmas tree, snowman, reindeer, sphere, candy cane, snowflake and merry Christmas.

Language Patterns

I wish … , we wish … It’s cold/hot/warm, I wish…, This is/These are

Books

The Polar Express, I Can’t Wait Until Christmas, Santa’s Helpers, My Christmas Treasury, Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa’s Toy Shop, Wee Mouse Christmas, Santa’s Sleigh.

Concepts

Hot /Cold Light/Dark Asleep/Awake Apart/Together Giving/Receiving

Action Verbs

Give, serve, get, sing, dance, jump. / Make, sing, dance, turn, hop, give, get, laugh.

Color

Green, Red, introduce White.

Math Skills

Review circle and square. Introduce number 2.

Science discoveries

Explore with light and shadows. Work with different sounds. Compare temperatures.Chemical reactions with heat and temperatureRecognizing sounds: bells, train, whistle, snoring, etc.

Fine Motor Skills

Practice stirring, mixing, pouring. Twisting and tying chenille stems.

Physical Development Objective

Following rhythm patterns. Dancing coordination while following motions and rehearsing for Winter Festival. Other exercises: 3 step obstacle courses, jumping and kicking.

Fine Arts Skills

Handprint and footprint 2013 calendar.

Music

Focus on rhythm sequences.Winter Wonderland songs:Twinkle Twinkle little starTeddy BearJingle Bell Rock

Value of the Month

Generosity.

Calendar dates and reminders:

Wednesday, Dec 5 Santa is coming to Toddler Tree! Individual photo session with Baby Madero in our gym

Friday, Dec 7 Balloons to Santa during our recess time from the playground

Emilia Contrini’s birthday on December 13th

Friday, Dec 14 Winter Wonderland Festival @ Candy Gum

Wednesday, Dec 19 Last day of school

Classes resume: Monday, January 7, 2013