Early Childhood Family Education

Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
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Kimball and Eden Valley Schools

The holidays are here and we are just fine with that. Our Early Childhood Family Education program is in full swing and we are enjoying getting together each week with families and kids. Parents, thanks for taking time to play with your children and provide a break from the regular old schedule. I notice that we are the regular old schedule for those families who have been coming to class all fall. This provides a calm environment for us to enjoy that is out of the excitement and anticipation of the season. For parents as well as kids, I think that is a wonderful time.

Monday and Friday's Mixed-age classes are having fun with toddlers and preschoolers who are graduating from the toddler age. The Monday Toddlers are having their first school experience, so we want it to be a good one.

Exploring the materials is always a challenge, but also a great play experience for the children. Today we "marble painted" candy canes, but never got to the marbles because the hands picked them up and so we simply "hand printed" the canes. We just need to be faster moving to do these things with kids. Stopping for circle time is still a learning experience for this group, but we are making progress. Our preschoolers are very interested in books and table work. It's fun to see that progression as the year goes.

In Monday and Tuesday night's, "Let's Learn" class (3-5s) kids and parents have enjoyed playtime with a variety of sensory and small muscle-building toys, such as coffee and trucks in the sensory box and play dough and letter stamps for the table work. Counting, colors and imaginative play is also encouraged. Parents have been discussing media's impact on families, fine motor skill building and using family rules to teach respect. This week is a "field trip" for these classes. They get to have "Make It, Take It" instead of regular school. Whole families can come for this fun evening.

In Thursday's Wiggle Room for ages up to three, we have a busy challenge. Children have learned to stop, clean up, and go to circle for the most part. (Keeping a schedule for five weeks paid off.) We also look forward to snack, and last week for the first time, the parents left the room for out talk time. Kids had popsicles for snack, so of course that helped a lot. No tears, no searching for parents, and fun play was our reward for preparing these kids for this big step. Hopefully this week will continue this successful separation time. Parents talked about toilet training (we are just done, just starting, or just in the middle) and dealing with tantrums from just over 2-year-old children. This is such a wonderful learning time for kids, but also a challenge for parents because they are essentially pushing to learn. Good job, parents.(And, Go Kids.)

We would love to see many more families in ECFE this winter-spring. Call if you would like to join us and we'll make way for you.

Have a wonderful,

family-centered Holiday.

Maggie Lundorff, ECFE Coordinator