Room 3 had an awesome time making delicious and healthy smoothies. What better way to celebrate St. Patrick’s day than to make a green smoothie? We used peaches, pineapples, mangos, strawberries, bananas, spinach, and coconut milk to create our concoction. Many of our kids loved learning about St. Patrick’s day and they certainly loved drinking the smoothie.
Month: March 2017
Why Routines are Important for Kids
Why Routines for Kids are Important
Predictability is something young children need in their lives. Uncertainty and change is naturally stressful for all human beings. Children are confronted with change daily. Although it is a growth opportunity, it can also be stressful for children. Changes are handled best in environments with familiar routines and if children know what is expected. A daily routine adapted to children’s interests and/or needs is very important because it allows them to feel safe. A sense of mastery in handling their lives is developed, allowing children to adapt to changes in their environments. Young children do not yet fully understand the concept of time, so they order their lives by events that happen, not by hours and minutes. One of the most important things that you can do to make your young child feel safe is to establish as much routine as possible. Children have a better understanding of their world when events happen in the same order every day, which is when they feel the most secure. Routines are emotional regulators that decrease conflict, stress, and anxiety. Children emotionally prepare for changes that are to come when routines are in place. A child with a set routine will progress through it, while also knowing what is expected of him/her when the task is complete. Through routines, children learn social skills (e.g., turn taking), self-control (e.g., waiting), and positive behavior. Routines help children understand concepts such as “before and after”. It is never too late to start a routine. When implementing routines it is important to keep in mind that adjustments may be needed. Know ahead of time that your child will have difficulty adjusting, and be prepared with how you will handle the resistance. Having consistency and limits is key. When you stick to a routine, you teach your child how to arrange his/her time in a manner that is efficient, productive, and cuts down on stress. The sense of order will allow your child to suppress an automatic sense of how to organize his/her own life as they grow up.
Routines at School:
At Pasadena Christian Preschool we understand the importance of routines and are aware of the positive effects it can have on our student’s emotional development. Our teachers promote a consistent routine day after day, giving our students the sense of security they need to take risks and make choices, which opens the door to exciting learning opportunities. All classrooms have similar daily schedules with different weekly curriculum that target children’s interests. In addition, our teachers make announcements during morning meetings about what to expect throughout the day, which helps incorporate learning with an organized connection. Our students are able to experience a sense of satisfaction and control at being able to perform all of part of the tasks connected with the routine.
Author: Irina Zepeda, CSULA Child Development Intern
The younger pod had a fabulous Saint Patty’s day on Friday with green yogurt, courtesy of Mrs. Terri, lots of outdoor fun, and a special surprise visit from our dear friend Ms. Jessica who came with a very special gift for our studio!!
We have been explaining the folklore around Saint Patrick’s Day to our little ones with the concept of “luck” and being “lucky” really meaning “blessed”. We’ve focused and talked at length about what a blessing is and what it means to be blessed- that we are all God’s children, brothers and sisters here to support and build one another up. We understand that we are here to enjoy the marvelous resources the Lord has set before us in our unique and individual ways as each one of us has been fearfully and wonderfully made, unique by God’s design. We put great importance on counting our blessings and living with an attitude of gratitude throughout life here on Earth. When we say we are “lucky” we truly mean blessed, and we are ever grateful for the grace of God, and for our brothers and sisters who let the Holy Spirit’s light shine so brightly through them.
The teachers were blessed with an over the top “teacher treats” spread on Friday by the hard working Parents of Room 2, complete with a green St. Patty’s Day theme! What a marvelous way to end the week and enjoy the holiday. (Thank you Room 2 Parents!) 💚
Rockin’ Room 5!
The recording studio is alive and well in Room 5. We’ve had a blast extending our learning with guest visitors and an expanded play space! We read “Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin” by Lloyd Moss last week during circle time and were given a special concert and demonstration of the violin by the lovely and talented Mrs. Sarah from all the way up in Room 1! The kids and teachers were thrilled! One of our featured artists on the recording studio walls is Lindsey Stirling who plays violin and dances beautifully! Check out her videos on YouTube with your child and see how cool a traditional instrument like the violin can be!
We also expanded our practice space into the circle time and blocks area with the addition of microphones and a drum set! Now we have been having rocking jam sessions every morning.
(We love to break out the scarves and free dance to Lindsey Stirling!)
As usual we are also getting a great education in the outdoor classroom. Our bodies, minds, and social skills gain a hot of exercise outside!
We are so grateful that some of our musically inclined parents have volunteered to give our little guys some immersive experiences with music and in our studio! Check back for updates on these exciting adventures in creativity and if you would like to donate your time/experience/old equipment or instruments to Room 5’s studio please let us know! Family involvement is one of the things that makes our school incredibly special. Until next time, rock on and peace out! ✌🏼
Welcome back to Room 2’s blog post!
We had an absolutely wonderful time last week, exploring Descanso Gardens on our field trip! It felt great to get out of the classroom for a change and marvel at God’s creation together. We loved being outside, learning the names of plants, trees, and simply getting to enjoy nature. God is so good, and provided us with the perfect weather to experience it in.🌾
Our Room 2 friends got to take in some beautiful views! The cherry blossoms were particularly gorgeous!
We loved taking in some fresh air and especially loved having moms and dads accompanying us! Parents, you always make our trips extra special. Thanks for making the time to be there! We love being a team with you.😊🍃
God is so good… He gives us so much. It can be hard in our busy lives to really make time to sit with Him and thank Him. But by making time to be outside and to fellowship with friends, we are doing just that. We are thanking Him. We must try remember to take a moment and thank Him. He’s worthy of our deepest praise and gratitude. He’s the Good Shepherd, who knows us; he knows our deepest needs, our deepest wants, and dreams. There isn’t a single detail of our lives that He doesn’t know about. Knowing this allows us to have peace and to hope, no matter where we might be in our journey with Him.🌱
We leave you with this last thought, out of the book of Psalms…
“The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name…” Psalm 23:1-3❤
We pray you are encouraged to look around and take a few moments to spend time with Jesus, wherever you might be. Here in Room 2, we don’t take those moments for granted. Until next time…💛
P.S. As always, a few candids!📸💕
3 Educational Toys Toddlers Love
3 Educational Toys Toddlers Love
If you are a parent, you know how hard your toddlers are to please and how important it is that they are simultaneously learning while they are playing. However, with so many educational toys for toddlers on the market right now, which ones do you pick? If you Google ‘educational toys for toddlers’, there will be millions on millions of results and it can be overwhelming. Here are some ideas to help a parent out. I am sure your toddlers will love them!
POKE – A – DOT BOOK
In this book, there are little raised buttons on each page that toddlers can click and poke, all while learning the alphabet! It is an interactive book that challenges their memory and mind. Toddlers can learn alphabet and animals faster from of this book. This brand also has many more books to teach your toddlers about the ocean, counting and even colors!
MOUSE IN A BOX
This toy allows toddlers to take responsibility for the little mouse. They can feed the mouse every morning and night, they can play with it during the day, and they can even tuck it into bed. They can use their imagination and while learning about responsibility.
You cannot go wrong with plain paper or a coloring book and some crayons! Young children benefit from drawing on plain paper as they can explore using their own lines, designs, colors, and creativity while increasing dexterity, motor skills and pencil grip. Coloring books can be introduced at a later age, when children are ready for them. While we promote open-ended coloring, coloring books may have their place in helping with focus, hand-eye coordination, and patience. They may also spark ideas for how to draw their favorite characters, scenes or objects. However, keep in mind that some children may find coloring books frustrating since they have yet to develop the dexterity for staying in the lines. If your child is frustrated with coloring pages, do not stress him/her out…stick with plain paper and save the books for a few years down the line.
The crayons shown above are a great tool to teach toddlers their colors, allowing them to draw and scribble. Coloring is a great way for them to use their imagination while developing their fine motor and cognitive skills. These crayons are shaped like a triangle to help them develop a proper writing grip. As a perk, they will not roll away or off the table!
Author: Nhi Quach, CSULA intern
STEM Learning in Early Childhood
Learning and teaching STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) is important at all grade level. However, STEM education has generally put emphasis on elementary and secondary education settings, and only limited attention has been given to early childhood education settings. However, early childhood STEM education is developmentally appropriate and important for building a foundation of concepts, knowledge, and skills related to STEM subjects. An early foundation in STEM areas is important in order to assist our next generation to compete in the world market. Young children always have questions about the world and how things work. Therefore, STEM education is ideal to build on their natural curiosity and set the foundation for interest in math and science. Young children are also naturally drawn to discovery and experiential learning. Implementing STEM in early childhood education settings will help children develop critical thinking, questioning strategies and skills in order to enhance their abilities to be critical thinkers as they progress through their learning years. Students in early childhood education are already able to problem solve and apply their knowledge if guided properly. Therefore, it is critical to provide developmentally appropriate opportunities to explore STEM subjects. Moreover, many of the jobs in this country are related to science, technology, engineering, and math. With an increasing international need for technological advances to communicate via different forms of technology, it is significantly important to implement STEM into all grade levels and it will help students stay competitive globally. The sooner children to learn STEM concepts, and parents get involved in STEM education, the better this society will be.
STEM education for early learners should be both fun and developmentally appropriate. Simple experiments, games using mathematical concepts, construction activities, tinkering, and more are all appropriate for little ones. Here are some hands-on STEM activities that parents can do with their children at home:
Fireworks in a Jar
Making Rain Clouds
Growing Seeds with Toddlers
Author: Charlotte Cheng, CSULA intern
Room 5’s Recording Studio…
The children in Room 5 are extremely musically inclined. All year they have turned activities with alternate focuses into musical ones. They see guitars and drum sets where their teachers put out wood blocks or tinker toys, and they are constantly making up songs together and requesting music to be played. We took the hint and turned our dramatic play center into a recording studio for our budding artists.
The studio is a work in progress. Ms. Maggie is using all her resources to try and collect real working instruments for the studio. We are teaching the children about physics like how guitars and drums make their distinct sounds, why we tune our guitars, what force and speed do to our instruments. We are learning math through rhythm and tempo. The children are also learning to care for and respect instruments- we never leave them on the floor and we always put them back in their stands or cases when we are done. This will be an ongoing project for as long as our little ones continue to participate and show interest. If you have any old equipment (speakers, sound boards, headphones, instruments, etc.) you would like to donate to our studio please be our guest! These little guys love to make music and Ms. Maggie is very excited to teach them how to record themselves making their music. 21st century skills are in full effect in this new center! We will keep updating with our new additions and components to this multi-faceted learning center in our classroom. Stay tuned… Room 5’s album is dropping soon! 😊🎶
Welcome back, folks! It’s so good to have you back to check in with us here in Room 2! We had such a fun and busy month in February! Can’t believe it’s gone!😅
This past month, we intentionally celebrated God’s Love…and boy, was it beautiful! We are so blessed to be a part of such a strong Christian preschool community, here at PCS. We don’t take it for granted! We had fun making pizzas, crafts, and sharing treats! God is LOVE, and Room 2 made sure to show it!
We have been continuing to teach about God’s love in Room 2, and what that looks like in our everyday life, especially here in our classroom. We are teaching friends that Jesus, Himself, is love, and without Him and His example, we simply can’t love well. We need His heart. We need His eyes for each other. We simply need Him- everyday, more and more.❤
Knowing Jesus changes everything, and we want to keep being a classroom that welcomes the Holy Spirit daily. We want to be led by His heart everyday, and be the kind of classroom that changes the atmosphere with His love, wherever we might be. This is something we will continue to aspire to.❤️
We are so proud of our friends as they continue to pursue Jesus to the best of their ability in our room. We as teachers are inspired daily to go deeper into God’s love and heart, as we see our friends growing and learning. God is amazing and we are constantly believing and praying for His heart to shine in and through our room as we learn together, and grow together!✨
We leave you with this:
A beautiful verse, and an encouragement and invitation to you to dive into God’s heart and love with us! Amazing things happen when we partner with Him… God bless you, and we will check back in soon!❤
P.S. As always, some candids! Enjoy!☺️
Traveling With Kids
Traveling with Kids
We all know that traveling with kids can be a nightmare! Let’s face it…traveling is stressful, even without kids. Add restless, impatient, and messy little ones to the mix and it is a completely new ball game. Much of our fear is probably due to the potential angry glares which other travelers tend to throw at parents traveling with their children (maybe you have thrown those invisible daggers yourself before). Part of it is also because we just don’t know what will happen when we are trapped 10,000 feet above ground…and so we imagine the worst: from diaper blowouts to 6-hour screaming sessions.
As travel dates creep closer, we begin to dread and worry about how our kids will do on the journey. Besides dealing with car seats, strollers, diaper bags, and other necessary child contraptions, we are afraid of being that parent whose children are a terror to the rest of the people on the plane.
The good news is, with a little preparation, you can minimize many of the biggest concerns about flying with kids and you do not have to be the most hated parent on the plane. In fact, you may be the envy of them! AND, you might actually enjoy it in the process. So how can you make this trip less of a disaster? Well, listen up traveling families.
These tips will help make traveling less stressful:
- Strategically Plan Your Flight- if your child still takes naps or tends to get tired at a certain time of the day, try scheduling your flight for that drowsy time (if possible)
- Ease the Discomfort of Flying- Pack ear plugs to relieve air pressure discomfort. Lollipops, pacifiers, sippy cups and bottles are also great for minimizing plugged ears.
- Pack for Success – Pack an additional diaper bag with milk bottles and juice boxes, spare outfits, a special blankie, favorite stuffed animals, and several immersive kid distractions .
Pull Out All the Distractions to Make the Time Fly By- Mark your belongings with your contact info just in case they get lost.
Pack a few books about traveling to keep them engaged about their trip. A few titles to enjoy are: My Plane Trip, by Cathy Beylon, My First Trip on an Airplane, by Katie Kawa, and My First Plane Ride, by Elizabeth Benjamin, Erin Gathrid
Children should be able to pack and carry his/her own entertainment in a small backpack which can include: sticker books, toys that don’t have too many pieces, an iPad (with new offline games), and a portable DVD player (with 2+ hours of videos). Don’t forget the headphones and remember to make sure everything is charged!
Children can also carry along a new pack of triangular crayons and a pad of paper.
Pack Helpful Accessories to Save Your Sanity- In addition to toys, don’t forget these essentials
Extra clothes for you and your child
Lots of wet wipes and large zip lock bags (use as garbage bags and other uses)
Snacks (crackers, string cheese, carrots, dried fruit)
Medication and first aid supplies (hand sanitizer, children’s Tylenol, antidiarrheal option, kids’ vitamins, and band aids)
Teach Your Kids What to Expect and How to Behave- Attend to your children
Watch out for signs of over-stimulation or boredom, have fun with them on the flight, and spend quality time with your children.
Author: Jenny Thieu, CSULA intern