Dear Preschool Families,
As the summer temperatures slipped away from us, blustery days and leaves aplenty seemed to replace the balmy weather with lightening-rod speed this week! Meanwhile, we continued to reap the benefits of our collective labor in our spectacular garden when we realized our lone and robust watermelon was ready for harvesting. The preschoolers met kindergarten peers at one of our raised beds on Thursday morning and gathered around to witness teachers ceremoniously liberating our watermelon. From there, the watermelon was headed straight into the mouths of many happy preschoolers.
If you haven’t had a moment to see the two sculptural trees in the front lobby of our building, please take a look. One tree belongs to the preschool, and we ask you to bring in a small family picture we can add to each leaf on our tree. Learning about our families brings us together as a community and helps the children feel grounded in who they are as growing preschoolers! We thank you in advance for sharing your family photo (4x6" image) with us. Please bring it in to your child’s teacher or send us an email and we’ll print it out for you!
Speaking of the front lobby of our Early Childhood Education Center, we have a wonderful surprise that is sure to spice up your lives! Intrigued? Reading carefully selected books is an important and valued part of our introduction to the preschool’s overarching theme -- Ourselves and Our Families — a theme we will explore throughout the first few months of school.
In Preschool A, multiple readings of one of our favorites, Karen Katz's The Colors of Us, became a springboard to our first conversation about skin color, hair color, and eye color. The story includes rich, descriptive language -- including the names of familiar and unfamiliar spices and seasonings -- to describe the wide variety in skin color. Our preschoolers pushed up their shirt sleeves to compare their very own “colors of us.” Afterwards they were invited to decorate paper with glue and then, as they sprinkled spices and seasonings atop the glue, their papers came to life with the “colors of us.” This project sparked lots of conversation and was a treat for our eyes and noses! In addition, our portrait partner project gave us an opportunity to work with clay and Model Magic to make faces. We carefully added facial features using natural materials found in our beautiful garden.
Children in Preschool B are diving into our study of ourselves and one another, both inside and out. After reading the book The Colors of Us by Katz, each child closely studied his/her own face in a mirror and then drew a self-portrait. Close attention was paid to skin tone, eye color, and hair type. To show our inside selves, we read the book My Head Is Full of Colors by Catherine Friend. We learned that a thought bubble is a great way to illustrate what someone is thinking. We now have a stack of preschool thought bubbles to display. It is fascinating to know that our children are thinking about everything from a three-wheeled dump truck to a Ninja grasshopper and much more. There are many deep thinkers in our preschool!
In two weeks we will be heading to TPS’s beloved outdoor classroom, The Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, for our annual fall festivities with other preschoolers and their families. Ride aboard a bus or meet us by car—we can’t wait to share the beauty of this place with you on Friday, October 28. Buses depart at 9:30 a.m. and return to TPS at approximately 1:30 p.m.
Some questions to ask your preschooler this week:
- Did you find the hidden turtle in the Garden this week?
- Did you taste the watermelon harvested from the Garden?
- What does a coqui look like when it sings?
Have a wonderful weekend!
The Preschool Team