Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Learning to Give. . .


These last two weeks the children have increasingly become aware of what goes on during this holiday season.  They sweetly contemplate what they want as a gift; as simple as a cup of hot cocoa!  We took time to make, wrap and talk about our humble gifts for our parents.  When it came time to hand you their little package, I could tell that it was fun for them to anticipate you opening them.

Kaden wrapping his gift...

Other diversions this week included the provocation of two hard-to-open containers with "something" in them.  Kaden and Karsten had a wonderful conversation about what they thought might be in them, "Candy!", "Toys!"  Then asked me to open them.  I replied, "Ask each other for help."  They did, and tried and tried, and finally got them open.

Inside was merely some colorful golf tees.  The girls took over and enjoyed lining them up and counting them.

Friday Jeff came to sing songs with us.  The guitar was an exciting thing and the children enjoyed dancing.

Our cooking project this week was making our own pretzels.  We talked about the yeast we used to mix up the dough and how it helped to make the pretzels rise.

It was hard to remember that the dough wasn't playdough!

When we put the pretzels in the oven the kids remembered what happened with the Gingerbread Man and commented "I hope the pretzels don't run away!"

They didn't, and they were yummy and warm!

On our way to the playground, we sometimes like to run up and down the ramp.

Jane took her blue kitty for a ride...

Happy Smiles!  Happy Holidays!


We hadn't played with the shaving cream in awhile and Zoe posed with a fantastic, contemplative face over it!

Predictably, our T/TH boys also got very curious about the hard-to-open jars and enjoyed guessing what might be in them.  They also liked jingling them to hear the sound the contents made.

Owen and Elliott worked really hard together to open them!

Ah, finally!  What's in there?

Camille has been including her baby more and more in her play lately.  Here she feeds her.

Zoe followed suit and helped her Care Bear to draw.

Here, Camille helps to dissolve the yeast for our homemade pretzels!

Kneading the dough...

The pretzels didn't run away like the Gingerbread Man!

Yummy and warm...

Our friend Carole Sue came to read a winter story.

And she made us all look like Rudolph with her red lipstick!

She brought a great mirror that turned to magnify our faces!

Baby gets one too!

She also had us show her we knew how to make snow angels.

Owen really liked the mirror...

We worked hard this week on making gifts for our moms and dads.

and wrapping them!

It was fun to give them to you!  

Happy Holidays!
See you soon!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

"Run, run, as fast as you can!  You can't catch me I'm the Gingerbread Man!"

Our seasonal efforts continued this week as we did many things gingerbread!  Another familiar story for play-acting, the children learned the art of running in place, as we took turns chasing the Gingerbread Man!  We practiced counting out 3 buttons to glue on a paper gingerbread man (above and below).

The highlight of the week is when we made an actual gingerbread man...

We took turns making a head, arms, body and legs and then made his features from candy. 

Somehow the Gingerbread Man got out of the oven while we were playing outside!  We searched and searched, only to find him back in our room, ready for us to eat!

Later we took turns finding small cookie gingerbread people all over the room!

Other activities this week included creating signs for our song that we sang at our potluck on Saturday.
Below, Gunnar and Jane paint the blue sky...

Karsten and Jane are painting the sunshine, below.

The children practiced hard for our performance!  A good "first" experience for that!

We are working hard on putting on our own snow pants.

Making a "castle."

More smiley face practice at the easel filling in a snowman...

Friday we made roads on the table with old adding machine tape and the children created a block city around it!

At the end of the week, we decided to make bird feeders out of our recycled boxes.  We hung one in the tree outside our classroom and children each made their own for home.  Let us know if you see the birds feeding from it!


Our T/Th group had fun making and decorating our Gingerbread Man -  he too escaped from the oven and was found in our room...

We found the little gingerbread people all over our room and made our paper versions with the three buttons and enjoyed learning our "lines" when we playacted the story.

We made signs for and practiced the hand motions of our song...

"May there always be sunshine, may there always be blue sky, may there always be mama (and daddy), may there always be me."  This is a Russian nursery school song I learned while minoring in that language in college. (we can learn the Russian version another time!)

We made paper roads for our trains.  Owen enjoyed drawing the tracks on the paper.

Zoe and Camille made an impromptu fort!

And Elliott always loves to make the chairs into a bus.  We went to the market and Barnes and Noble!