Random Acts of Kindness

Random Acts of Kindness Week 2016 is Feb. 14-20.
We will be doing some Kindness Projects. Please keep a look out of notes being sent home.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Search for Baby Jesus!

This month we've been learning about the First Christmas.  We learned :

  1. Christmas is Jesus' Birthday
  2. Jesus' parents are Mary and Joseph
  3. Mary and Joseph had to stay in a stable with the animals.
  4. Jesus' crib was a manger.
  5. A Manger is a feed box for the animals
  6. Angels told the shepherds that Jesus was born.
  7. The wise men saw a bright star in the sky.
  8. They followed it and found Jesus. 
  9. They brought him gifts
Today we read the story "What Star is This?" by Joseph Slate.  It is about a comet that grows and becomes the star that lead the Wise Men to Jesus.

We decided to be Wise Men.  Each child chose something to take as a gift to Jesus.  The children chose a book, a baby, a dish, a blanket, a wrench, and a jingle bell.  We have a Nativity set outside our front door so we put on our coats and headed out the back door to make our journey to find Jesus.
When we arrived at the front steps Baby Jesus was gone!!!

There was a sign on the door which the children, of course, assumed was a mission note.  They donned their Super Hero capes and off we went to find Baby Jesus. 



I'm sure the neighbors could hear the children calling "Baby Jesus, where are you?" as we walked through the neighborhood.

The patches of ice were fascinating to our Super Heroes but they kept moving along.  As we made our way back to the Preschool, we found Baby Jesus back by the garage. 
We returned Baby Jesus to Mary and Joseph and gave him our gifts. 

Happy Birthday Jesus!!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Mission # 1-- Super Pup and Super Cat Got Lost!!

Today the Super Pals were called to action.  After our story about Johnny Appleseed we were getting our Sidekick Bag ready for Spider Man to take them home.  When we opened it up, Super Pup and Super Cat were gone!!  We found this note inside :


































The children grabbed their capes and away we went.  We decided that since cats like to climb trees they could have gotten stuck in a tree.   We walked down the sidewalks and through alleys.
 
We looked up in  trees.......
There is a ALCO bag in the tree that the kids thought the Side kicks might be inside of.  The way the wind blew it around we could tell it was an empty bag. 


We looked in back yards.....


We looked under trees....


As we returned to Linda's Preschool through the alley, Super Princess spotted Super Pup and Super Cat trapped on the roof of the little red building.
Thanks to the Super Pals  Super Pup and Super Cat are now safe and sound this weekend with Spider Man. 

Adventures with Super Princess

This past weekend we got to visit Super Princess's house.  She took us everywhere she went.  We got to ride in the stroller with her dolls.


We rode on her bike and slept with her every night.

On Sunday we got to go to the Elyria Pumpkin Festival.  It was so much fun!  Super Princess' mom made some yummy puppy chow to share with all of her friends at Preschool.  It doesn't taste like Super Pup's food, but it was very yummy!!

Thanks Super Princess for the fun weekend!!
Super Pup & Super Cat

Monday, October 4, 2010

Adventures with little "J"---Bat Man

We had a great time at 'Little J's" (Bat Man)'s  house! We helped Bat Man's  mom with her garage sale. Then we went to his Grandma and Grandpa's to watch the Husker Game. (We really need to get ourselves some Husker attire for all these football parties we get to go to.)   The highlight of our weekend was getting to go to the Pumpkin Patch on Sunday.  We went down slides, rode the train and helped him pick out a pumpkin.

This is a picture Bat Man drew of him and us riding in a spaceship.
What a great picture!

Thanks Bat Man  for the GREAT time!
Super Pup and Super Cat

A visit to "P"'s (Star Girl) house

 Sept. 17, 2010----WOW! We were busy at Star Girl's house this weekend.  On Friday we went to the grocery store and bought some chicken nuggets. Super Cat really wanted some of those! That night we slept with P on the top bunk!  On Saturday we got to meet the WHOLE family at the Husker football party that Star Girl's mom & dad threw!  We got to play with Star Girl and her little brother and all her cousins.  We also met her Grandma and Grandpa.  There was lots of yummy food! On Sunday we went to ALCO and looked at Halloween decorations. Star Girl tried on a really scary mask! After seeing that we're not sure we want to go trick or treating.

Thank you Star Girl for showing us such a great time!


Super Pup and Super Cat

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Meet our Sidekicks!

Every Super Hero needs a reliable Side Kick. This year we have 2 Side Kicks to help us with our adventures.

We'd like to meet Super Pup......
and Super Cat.........

You will notice that they have Super Capes.  Each preschooler will get a chance to take them home over a weekend.  The child's parents write an entry into their journal about the adventures they've had.
We're looking forward to a fun year!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

How to make an EASY and safe Super Hero cape

  Over the past few years there have been a lot of movies about Super Heroes. While I never personally cared for them my preschool children have been fascinated with them. They would bring us doll blankets and want them tied around their neck.  Within a few minutes they were back asking us to tie them again.
 I don't remember where I originally found this idea but I think it is ingenious.

First of all, get a t-shirt a little bit larger than the child who will be wearing it. You want big enough so it will still fit over their head as they grow, but you don't want it too long so that they trip over it as they run and play.

1. Cut off the front of the shirt by cutting up each side up to the arm pit of the sleeve.
2. Cut around the back of the sleeve up just past the shoulder seam.
3. Cut along the seam to neck hole.
4. Cut around the neck hole over to shoulder seam and across to sleeve.
5. Cut around the back of the sleeve as you did on the other side and down the side
6.  You will have the neck hole and back of the shirt left.  The child can slip the neck hole over their head. No tying, buttoning, etc.
7.  The capes can be decorated with fabric paint or glue other embellishments on.
We glued felt lightning bolts and stars on. Then we used spray on glue and sprinkled glitter on the shirts. We re-sprayed the glue to ensure the glitter would stay on.  I don't know how the glitter will stay on if they are washed. Unless our Super Heroes encounter a really messy situation I don't have plans to wash them.
Don't throw away the sleeves!! You can leave the cuff/hem part in tact and cut a part of the sleeve out and you have a mini cape for your child to use for a stuffed animal or doll.  It can be their Side Kick.

Super Hero Sidekicks

Today "P" came in and asked if I could make a super hero cape for her baby (doll).  I said we'd see what we could do at Center Time.  "P"'s mom is my preschool aide so she already had some ideas to help.  Before I had time to start on the project "P" had already fashioned a cape out of paper.
I pulled out the remains of the shirts we had cut for super hero capes, which still had the sleeves attached.  I cut off the sleeves and leaving the cuff/hem in tact cut off a part of it.  Then she could slip the cuff/hem part over the dolls head.  All the while my aide and I were discussing how each child could bring a doll or stuffed to toy to be a Side Kick.  "P" went to hang the cape up on a hook in our Command Center but there weren't enough hooks. It was then that "D" and I decided to make our other bulletin board the Side Kicks Command Center.  I found extra hooks that we put up on the bottom just for their capes.


"P" was proud of her new cape and had all kinds of plans on how they would save the world together.
Of  course the children wanted all the dolls in the House Center to have capes as well.  When it was time to go for a walk they each took a baby wearing a cape and had fun making their Side Kick fly.
I just love when a simple suggestion by one of the children leads to a whole new learning experience.
Thanks "P" for the AWESOME IDEA!!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Calling all Super Heroes!

Our theme this year is "Up, Up and Away with Learning Fun !"  The  preschoolers have been called to action. They are busy decorating their Super Hero capes and choosing their Super names.
We have set up a Command Center where details of our 'missions' can be found.  The capes will be hung below for easy access when we are called to duty.

 
 Mini name tags and hooks are placed below so each Super Heroes cape will be easily found.
What missions we will be called to do are not known yet but it should be an exciting year!!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Erupting with activity 2

One of the most fun sand projects the kids had were making volcanoes.  They started just by making a mountain and making a path coming down and around it. Without surprise they asked if they could have baking soda and vinegar to make it erupt. (They never seem to tire of this activity.)  I went in the house to get the supplies and within minutes "S", our top scientist, was in asking for aluminum foil.  He had a plan.  He wanted to cover the path with foil so the vinegar and baking soda wouldn't be absorbed into the sand.
They had a golf ball that they wanted to float down the path as it erupted.  Once they got the foil in place it was time for the baking soda. Then the vinegar.  It didn't work as they hoped. They needed another plan.  Here come's little 4 yr old "A" to the rescue!!  He had found the plastic inserts (pvc pipe) and ping pong balls from our volcano models we used at a recent Kid's Fair.  They buried the inserts in the sand and tried using the ping pong balls.
They still didn't get the results they hoped for.  We tried another tactic..
putting the tube in at an angle.


This worked better and sent the ball down the path a little way.  

It wasn't long before all the rest of the kids were watching and making their own volcanoes.

 Before their discoveries were finished the baking soda and vinegar ran out.  While they wanted me to run to the store that moment to get more, it was almost time to go home. I promised them I would get more and they could try again tomorrow.  

For less than the cost of a DVD, about 12 kids were entertained for a couple hours that afternoon.



Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Erupting with activity

What do you get when you combine a new shipment of sand, buckets and a little imagination? 

At "Linda's" we get a wide array of things like fields, sand castles, ant hills, sand towns and volcanoes. At the beginning of June we got a shipment of sand. Thanks to wonderful helpers (Sara, Carla, & Jason) we had it moved into the fence in a couple hours.   It wasn't long before the imaginative juices started flowing....

"Urtle Island"
Making roads

sand smiley face

Corn for the fields which later did start to grow.

the ant hill

The sand has provided many opportunities for discovery and imagination.  In the process of all this creativity the kids have had to work on cooperation, sharing and reasoning skills. 

There is no question the kids get dirty and probably bring home a great deal of sand in their shoes and hair.  While some parents may be irritated by this, we more commonly hear statements such as:
"I know they had fun!"
"We definitely know what they accomplished today"
"At least we know they didn't spend the day in front of a screen."
"No problem, they will wash! "
For about the price of ONE video game we've provided 20+ kids hours of entertainment (all at the same time!)     It was definitely a worthwhile investment!


Sunday, July 11, 2010

Is it still wrong??

If a man speaks in a forest and there are no women around to hear is he still wrong?

 

You've probably heard this question before.  Men and women obviously have different opinions on this.   Similar questions have entered my mind quite often lately as I work with the preschoolers and school age kids during the summer.   

 

If I break a rule when none of the teachers see me, is it still wrong?  

Is (insert action) still wrong if I don't get caught?

The first question is making the assumption that a man is always wrong.  This is clearly debatable and I won't go there! LOL   The questions in my mind leave little to debate in terms of right and wrong. The underlying message in both questions is whether certain actions are right or wrong if no one sees another person doing them.

 

Lately we've felt like broken records (or in terms kids would understand--"skipping CD's"). We no sooner get done telling the children that a certain action is not acceptable (throwing sand, hanging on tree branches, taking off shoes outside, etc), we turn our backs and someone does it.

The usual response is   "I didn't do it!" Followed by a chorus of other voices saying  "I saw you do it!" 

 

I suppose it's human nature to see how much you can get away with--how far you can push the limits.  Don't we as adults use similar excuses?  "It's only illegal if you get caught."  "What they don't know won't hurt them." 


The scary part of this attitude to me is the 'sneakiness' of it.  I suppose that's what makes it all the more appealing.  While throwing sand and swinging from tree branches may not be major offenses when looking at the bigger picture, its the motive--the way of thinking and justifying ones actions--that can lead to bigger problems.


Now do I think these kids are destined to a life of crime? NO!! I have some of the greatest kids and the parents have a reason to be proud of the persons they are becoming.

 

We have used examples with the kids to help them understand the concept that actions don't have to be seen for someone to know they happened.   

"Suppose you were at the park and everything was dry. It rained over night and the park is now wet.  Are you sure it rained at the park ?  (They respond "yes") How do you know, you didn't see it?  (They respond with "things are wet")  So does rain get things wet even if you didn't see it rain? (yes). "  We then go on to explain to them that breaking the rules is wrong even if no one sees you doing it.  We then  point out however that SOMEONE does see it------ GOD. 


We know kids will push the limits and rules will get broken from time to time. I  just hope we are getting the message across well enough so when they are faced with tough decisions they will make the right choice. 







Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Soaring to other ideas

While some of the children dove in to drawing pictures of the town, others found other uses for the paper.
Paper airplanes



One got stuck in a tree

One boy was the more successful than the rest at making paper airplanes that would actually fly.  He soon became the Master Paper Airplane Maker.

An ExtraORDinary Place with ExtraORDinary Kids

Our town (Ord, NE) has a celebration at the end of May called "ExtraORDinary Days."   The festivities are held over a weekend so there's really not anything going on during the week to take the kids to.  
One afternoon last week I needed to get the school age kids out of the Center so the younger kids could rest.  We'd already been to the Little park and they didn't all have swimming gear for the pool.  Not really knowing where we were going to go, I packed up boxes of crayons, a pack of drawing paper and some trays to put the paper on while drawing.

We started walking looking for a shady place to sit and draw.  Since we didn't want to sit in people's lawns we needed to find a public place. Then it occurred to me--the town square!  We divided up into groups of two.  They were told to find a shady spot on the courthouse lawn





and look around the square and draw something that caught their eye.  It was interesting to see what each child saw. 

 The Movie Theater


a lady bug on a leaf

Tree, park bench and steps to Court house

Tree, boulder and bird

What's written on the boulder


The satellite dish on top of radio station

While they may not have captured the images of things that remind me of what our community has to offer but they showed me parts of the town that I too often overlooked. 

Monday, May 24, 2010

R.I.P. Todd

When we go on an outing I never know exactly what the kids will find.  Today  the school age kids and I ventured to the elementary school playground.  At one point a couple kids were examining something laying on the ground.  From a distance I could tell it was a snake.  Knowing that a rattlesnake was found in the area a couple years back I was concerned.   It was definitely a snake, but thank goodness only a garter snake.

 Soon all 9 kids were huddled around the snake. Some children threw rocks at it. Others threw a ball. While "J" was insisting that "It's one of God's Creatures. You can't hurt it!"

Unfortunately for "J" the snake was injured from all the things being thrown at it.  They could see it begin to bleed (or some kind of fluid coming from it's body).  "C" wanted me to put a bandaid from our first aid kit on him.  I told him I didn't think it would help. He said that the snake's mommy and daddy would give him a bandaid.

As we observed the snake he opened his mouth and put out his tongue.  The debate over whether the snake had teeth or not ensued.   This led to a discussion on the color of the snake's tongue.  Some children were sure that the tongue would turn from pink to black when it was going to strike. ( I have yet to find any information on the internet to back up that claim.).   

After much coaxing I convinced them to leave the snake alone for while.  They went back to playing.  Before too long I looked over and they were carrying the snake by his tail. He was dead.  They HAD to bury him.
Since we didn't have any shovels the kids did the next best thing:
Once they had a hole the snake was put in :
They placed a stick for a marker and picked flowers to decorate the grave:
 "A" asked for a moment of silence and then he made the Sign of  the Cross.
They decided his name was Todd.

R.I.P. Todd