This past Saturday marked my one year anniversary with Weems Creek Nursery School. WOW! So much has happened, and I am forever grateful to the loving and talented staff, and to YOU, who helped ease the transition. It's been a privilege on so many levels - thank you for entrusting us with your child!
All good things need a celebration. Weems is a good thing, so we're going to celebrate!
THANK YOU to our PVG for their initiative in hosting this event, and to all of you who have offered to help in some way. We are still seeking volunteers, so if you're interested, please let me know or write to the PVG at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also go to our WEBSITE for more details. Remember, simply attending the event is a great contribution!
Finally, this event is open to the greater Weems community -- so if you know former parents of Weems' students, or people who are alumni themselves, please invite them to join our Parents & Alumni Facebook group and feel free to share the event link.
To purchase tickets, click here.
In the meantime, conferences have come and gone. We're back to business as usual. Here's to a solid and fun-filled time of teaching and learning!
What's in your heart?
There are three main factors I look for when choosing children's books ... while a book may not have all three and still be great, when a book DOES have all three, I consider it incredible!
Watch here for a sneak peak at Jo Witek's In My Heart: A Book of Feelings to see an example of an incredible children's book.
Video Link: https://youtu.be/yfvzgagzjvA
Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/2BthxKA
It may seem odd to think about teaching your child about the value of money when they're in preschool. However, in one survey done on the topic of financial awareness, high school students reported that 88% of what they know about money they learned from their parents. From a developmental standpoint, children as young as three years old have the capability to understand basic monetary concepts.
So if the majority of what your child learns about money will come from you, why not start the teaching early?
This is the LAST week to vote in HulaFrog's 2019 Most Loved Awards! Voting ends Friday, Feb 1st at 11:59 PM. We would love your vote, helping families learn more about what a preschool is meant to be.
What does a personal protection class have to do with teaching your child strong communication skills? “Uhhh…not much?” I mean, a personal protection class is all about learning how to defend yourself against someone who is physically attacking you, right? Well, that’s partly true, yes. But I have recently learned there is a whole lot more to it. If we open our minds, a personal protection class actually has a LOT to teach us about empowering children with strong communication skills. Skills that will help them stand up for themselves and be creative in problem solving — and ultimately foster healthy independence and increase their natural resilience.
For the last month I’ve been in Sarasota, Florida. I went for a variety of reasons (sunshine and warm weather being one of them!), but while there I took the opportunity to sign up for personal protection classes. Rooted in his training as a professional bodyguard, Alex Popeskou’s program emphasizes the philosophy that each of us is 100% responsible for our own lives, and communication is one of our strongest self-defense tools.
Communication is not just one, but three layers of defense:
and, lastly, physical
It may seem like a stretch to relate this to preschool aged children. Stick with me. I’m not suggesting 3, 4 or 5 year olds be 100% responsible for themselves. I am suggesting they are the perfect age to learn about different types of communication in order to slowly increase their awareness for ways they can help themselves.
ENERGY: First we must be able to read a situation. People and environments all possess an energy. Whether that energy feels good, bad, safe or dangerous is up to us to discern. How? Usually we do it through what we call a “gut reaction.” Energy is something you feel. When we pause to listen to, and trust, our intuition, we will accurately read the energy of a situation more times than not.
VERBAL: Second, we have our words. The age old adage think before you speak is a good one, particularly when in tense or uncomfortable situations. How we respond to others can be the difference in escalating a situation or diffusing it before it gets out of hand. No matter the situation, “Be nice,” Alex teaches. Using respectful words in a calm voice can deliver a firm message yet is less likely to provoke someone compared to an aggressive tone of voice.
PHYSICAL: Trusting our intuition and calmly and respectfully using verbal communication will help most of us manage the majority of the situations in which we find ourselves. Physical contact is a last resort, and when used should be done so to protect oneself, not to initiate or cause harm.
In summary, children are never too young to learn how to protect and advocate for themselves. Teaching children communication in terms of energy, verbal interaction, and physical contact provides them a powerful tool to have as they grow to be independent young people.
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The more you get to know me, the more you'll learn that I'm a big proponent of raising children to know they're capable of anything. You see, growing up, I was quite blessed that my parents consistently gave my brothers and me the message that if we wanted it, we could do it. (They still do this actually.) "It" takes a plan, hard work and dedication despite failure that may occur along the way. With those pieces in place, to this day we know we have their unfailing support in helping us achieve whatever it is we we set our minds to.
These days, so many resources exist to help share this message! Two of my favorites are A Mighty Girl and The Mankind Project. In short, both organizations promote community to empower girls and boys in traditional gender roles as well as non-traditional gender roles. It's the balance between the two that I appreciate so much!
The buttons below will take you to their websites. Even more though, if you're on Facebook, I encourage you to follow both of these pages. I find the resources and inspiration that both groups share to be rich. If anything resonates, please let me know! I'd love to hear how these resources work for you.
For many, January is a month of fresh starts and renewed energy and commitment to a goal. Here at school, January is most certainly a time of renewed energy but also a time of digging deep into our routines and moving forward along the journey of learning, building responsibility and empowering independence.
One way we do that is by giving the children "jobs" and a shared responsibility in keeping our classrooms clean and safe. Not only do these types of responsibilities help children learn how to support the overall needs of a group or family, but there's also the added benefit that small children love to help! Take a look at the graphic below for ideas on age-appropriate jobs you can use to engage your children in helping out at home.