Lisa McCleish, Director of Early Childhood Programs
The cold and snowy winter frequently prevented the children from playing outside the past few months. We are blessed to have large spaces like the Social Hall and the Pine Room where we can run around and use up some of that endless energy that children have, but the teachers still had to get creative with classroom activities.
Since taking off their shoes and socks is a favorite toddler activity, the teachers in room 17 filled six shallow pans with a variety of wet and dry materials (oatmeal, rice, bubble wrap, shaving cream and warm water) for the children to walk through.
As expected, the children each reacted differently. Some of the children couldn’t wait to step into the pans, and went right back to the beginning when they finished. A few of the children needed an adult hand to hold, but Charlie and Gigi wanted no part of the activity. Charlie clung to his teacher and wouldn’t let go, while Gigi repeated, “No way Miss ‘Lizabeth, no way!”
After two days of coaxing and encouragement from her mom, Gigi was no closer to participating. On day three, Miss Elizabeth had everyone experiment with the materials using their hands first. Then the whole class, teachers and children, took off their shoes and socks before walking through the tubs. The room was filled with giggles and excited screams.
One of the teachers reminds us at every staff meeting that we learn something new from the children every day so the lesson for today, “When you are apprehensive about trying something new, start with a finger before you jump in with both feet.”