Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A "Super" Observation

It's morning play and the indoor gross motor area has manifested into dramatic play; super heroes and magic powers.  I watched in awe and wished that I could remember how to whole-heartedly transform myself into a super something-or-other.  Myself and my Team Teacher recalled the things & people we used to become....Charlie's Angel's, She-ra/He-Man characters.  Anyway, these are some of the (partly subjective) observations I made:

1)  The invention of a special ability or power, that when watching them use it, makes it seem real.....and to them in that frame of time, it is!

2)  The non-verbal cues that seem to tell a sidekick what the "plan" is and the reading of each others body language can be very subtle yet quite effective. 

3)  The Girls:  huddle together and set up a plan of action, follow through with said plan, then pause to shout out what happens next.

The Boys:  add things in whenever they see fit, tell everyone the plan as they already begin implementing it or after the fact.

*This isn't always the case, but today it just happened to play out in such a way. 

4)  Phrases often uttered may include, but are not limited to:
"Pretend that (I), (you)....." , "....and then (I), (she/he), (they)...." , "....and now (you're), (I)...."

5) When it's all said and done, life is content, an hour seemed like 10 and memories have been rendered!

What observations have you made about super hero/fantasy play?  Got a anecdote to share, would love for you to post it here!

Until You Read Again....

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Flights of Fancy

Decorate the sky with these super easy and super fun kites that the children can put together in 30 minutes or less!

Wrapping Paper Kite at Canadian Living
Newspaper Kite at Mothergoose
and my favourite.....

The Plastic Bag Kite:

Happy Flying!

Until You Read Again.....

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Asphalt Canvas

Found a great "how-to" at Let the Children Play via The Crafty Crow on making your own chalk paints.  Although ours didn't turn out just like theirs, for the children it was simply the ability to freely create their own paints that mattered most.  The looks of pride in their faces when they finally reached their perfect colour was wonderful : )

Mixing colours in jars.

Spectacular! (yah, I enhanced the photos @ Picnik)

What a great way to brighten the playground!
Until You Read Again....

Stacking Up, Up, Up

Throughout the school year a small handful of the ASC (after-school children) had turned some little cups that were suppose to hold beads, into a cup stacking activity.  Last week I added 60 more cups to the few we had and now it's one of the top 5 activities.  The stacks range from small to grandiose and challenges ensue to see whose stacks go highest or how intricate they can design them. The giggles, gasps and faces that follow a crashing of unbalanced cups, is priceless! 
Challenge:  Create stacks, towers and bridges using only the little plastic cups!

How will your creation stack up?

Until You Read Again......

Friday, July 15, 2011

SnAcK AtTaCk #2

"Flower Pots"
This was a treat snack we had during our end-of-school party. 

Originally we were suppose to make the classic worms & dirt, but I forgot to pick up the gummi worms...opps!  It's what I like to call a happy accident.

What we used:
~ instant pudding
~ crushed chocolate cookie wafers
~ melon slices
~ plastic cups or clean flower pots
~ bamboo sticks
~ green ribbon or mint leaf gummie candy

How we made it:
~ Whip up instant pudding and divide into cups.  Sprinkle cookie crumbs on top.
~ Cut melon into 1/2 inch slices and cut out the flower shapes with cookie cutters.  Don't forget to eat the delicious scrap's!
~ Tie ribbon to bamboo sticks and insert into "flowers"; stand up in "pots" and keep refrigerated. 
(Note: 2 sm. pkgs of instant pudding made 18 flower pots filled with about 1/3 cup of pudding.)

The children made these with very little assistance from myself and it was the most popular treat that afternoon!

Until You Read Again......


One afternoon I set out the colouring area with small squares and rectangles of card stock and regular takers.  The next morning I stepped in for a co-worker in the Kindergarten program and set out the same activity.  The first two children in that day gravitated towards the table and asked "can we use these?", "Of course!" I said.  The children began laying out the different pieces of paper on the table top, one of the children said "how am I going to stick this together?"  I went to the paper drawer and pulled out large pieces of (frame) matting, set them on the table with some glue sticks and they eagerly began gluing down their masterpieces.  They finalized their art with shades of blue accented with black, grey and white.

Until You Read Again....

Wax Paper Painting

This idea hit me as I was contemplating doing the wax paper and crayon sun catchers.  Why not paint them?
Start by unrolling a sheet of wax paper, leaving enough on the bottom to make a palette (the children then get to arrange their own pallette and mix colours freely).  Using a permanent marker, draw your picture to be painted.  It can be a free-form design or place the wax paper over a picture and trace with a fine tipped permanent marker.  Finally, use acryllic paint to finish off your design!  

Give it a try!
Until You Read Again.....

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Paper Tube Cuffs

The children had oodles of designing fun yesterday when they made paper tube cuffs and bracelets.
You can make them too with stuff you probablly already have handy!

Paper tubes and Scissors...

Collaging Materials...

....and Glue

Oooo Lala!

They spent a good part of an hour creating and kept coming back in between other play times to make more!
Hope this inspires you and your group.

Until You Read Again......

Monday, July 4, 2011

It Begins....

For many childcare centres, it is the beginning of summer programming.  What will your program be like this year?  Busy? Relaxed? or a balance of both?  I will try and post as much as possible about all the adventures and discoveries that will happen over the next 2 months.  
Today was all about organizing, team work, testing boundaries and observing.  Tomorrow......who knows!  This will be the first year myself and the other Educators will be running a summer program using Emergent Curriculum, so we're interested to see what develops! 
Hooray for Summer!!!!
Until You Read Again......