Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Thanksgiving Share Feast

Wow!  We had a GREAT turnout for our Share Feast ;0)  I didn't actually get a head count but there were at least 40 people of all ages!  The food was delicious & the fellowship was even better - I am so thankful for all of the sweet families we have at Countryside Playschool!

Lots of yummy food!

 Siblings & friends enjoying our room
Thank you SO much to St. John's Cathedral for letting us use their space for both the prek & this special event!  We love being here!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Week 8 - Lantern Walk & makin' waffles

Our balloons were ready to pop this week!  The lanterns looked lovely with the candles in them, although it was delightfully sunny so we couldn't see them very well when we went outside....hopefully the children were able to see them glowing at home either on their own night walk or when they turned out the lights :0)  I'll include a few pics here of the night walk our family had in the snow Monday night - cold but beautiful! 

We also beefed up our circle time this week - we usually have a short play/lunch prep time first thing in the morning now, and then do our circle time when everyone has arrived (usually by 1020).  This week we sang our "I Give Thanks" song & our rain poem w/ hand motions (see if they remember either!).  We also used little pictures of ourselves to count how many girls/boys/teachers were there today & talked about more/less & wrote the numbers on a chalkboard (ie down & back & down once more, that's the way to make a four).  I also wrote a short morning message: We will make waffles.  The children helped to sound out the letters, then we counted how many w's were in the sentence.  They did really well!  Several readers & pre-readers are really ready for this kind of work, and even though we are not a strictly academic prek I want to add a little bit here & there as naturally as possible for those who are ready :0)

It was just dark enough under the trees to see some glowing from our lanterns!
"I shall make waffles!!"

Ben loves to stir - but you have watch him!  He also likes to taste ;0)

Ezra did a great job cracking his egg this time! 

Lots of writing & reading this week - we started to bulk up our circle time with not just a story, but counting, writing numbers, reading a short sentence & finding letters in it, and of course, lots of singing :0)  The waffle iron on the back of the table was my great-grandmothers - still going strong!


Another lovely lunch
This is Sam, one of Zach & Gigi's older brothers!

Miss Abbie busy tying the lanterns to the sticks

Cool designs Gigi!

Zach wrote a very sweet note to his Mama :0)

Reading 'Pancakes for Breakfast'...we also read Pancakes Pancakes by Eric Carle at circle time!  Next time we bake I'd like to bring our manual grain mill so everyone can have a turn grinding fresh wheat berries :0)

Have you ever tried to teach "Rock Paper Scissors" to children who are wearing mittens??

It is hilarious!!  Cause...they don't have fingers!  We were deciding who would be "it" first for Duck Duck Goose

I played for a good 20 minutes - then they played another 15 at least on their own :0)  The younger ones just followed along & 'ducked' or 'goosed' whoever they wanted!

Silas & Ben rearranged the table logs into a cool stepping stone path

This was a huge hit & most everyone played this til it was time to go home!

Here are the lanterns we made at home....

And we also tried some using old jars - much more sturdy but really the balloon/tissue paper ones held up surprisingly well even in the snow & wind

The first snow!

Love that glow :0)  We made sweet meat squash (like pumpkin) chocolate chip cookies & delivered them to the 6 neighbors we have within walking distance! 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Week 7 Lantern Making & rain puddles!

Last week I told the story of Martin the first, a man who lived during the middle ages.  As the story goes, he was a generous & kind man who, when he came upon a poor man shivvering in the streets, cut his cloak in half with his sword & gave the man half so he could warm himself.  In Europe he is celebrated with a feast similar to Thanksgiving/harvest time and many communities have a lantern walk around their neighborhoods or towns to "let their light so shine before men" as Martin did so long ago.  SO!  We used balloons as forms for our tissue paper lanterns!  Messy and oh-so-gooey ;0)  They dried all week & we had our lantern walk this week (pics in next post). 

Thank you to Rachel & Isaac for loaning us a big bag of dress up clothes!  Here, Buzz Lightyear (Silas) works on geometric shapes & lots of letters!

Isaac & Gigi working on their lanterns

Miss Abbie is working on a hat for her great grandma - some day she may teach all of us how to knit :0)

Welcome to Zach!  He's the one hiding behind Josie & Gigi ;0)  He is one of Gigi's brothers - so we have lots of siblings now!

Princess Rachel is working on the geoboard, with Mandolin & Ezra assisting ;0)

Josie is SO excited about all the dress ups!

Nice pose, girlies!

Buzz, Zach & Ezra work on the traintracks with their diggers....

Everyone loves balloons!

Mandolin & Ezra working on their lanterns....

Batman (Isaac) is sorting pretend leaves by color using tongs

Everyone just loves drawing at this shelf - even when the table is clear they use this!

Our book corner is almost always occupied :0)

Rachel loves making little hedgehogs with playdough & acorns

A little rain walk

Mud pies anyone?  Ella is an expert chef!

Serving up mud pie snacks in the drizzly weather is our specialty!

See that puddle back there?

Silas LOVED this puddle!  In fact, I think he went swimming in it ;0)  They loved splashing through with their boots!

We were so thankful to have a change of clothes this last week!