Author Archives: tracyehlert

INVOLVING CHILDREN IN COMMUNITY PROJECTS: Kindness Bingo

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KINDNESS BINGO:

To start out 2017, our community project this month is a refresher on being kind. For them to fully understand why we work on community/service projects, they need to fully understand kindness.

We have been reading books on kindness and taking extra time to point out actions we see around us that are kind. To help with that, we have been playing Kindness Bingo and the children have been rewarded when we get a bingo on our card.

Skills Worked on with this Project:
-Learned about feelings and emotions
-Had discussions about why we should be kind, how it makes us feel
-Put kindness into action

To download your own kindness bingo sheet click here: kindness-bingo

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DRAMATIC PLAY: Hot Cocoa Shop

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To start out 2017, I added a brand new dramatic play center. For the months of January and February our dramatic play center is a: Hot Cocoa Shop

Great article to read on “How Dramatic Play Can Enhance Learning”: http://www.earlychildhoodnews.com/earlychildhood/article_view.aspx?ArticleID=751

Things to Gather for a HOT COCOA SHOP theme:
-Cups
-Cup Sleeves
-Stirrers
-Cash Register
-Play Money
-Empty Whipped Cream/Cool Whip Containers
-Empty Cocoa Boxes/Pouches
-Hot Cocoa Toppings (Chocolate Chips, Marshmallows, Mints, etc…)
-Empty Milk/Cream Containers
-Dishes
-Sale Stand
-Dress Up Clothes
-Phones
-Clipboards
-Paper & Pens

More resources to set up a hot cocoa stand center:
http://www.pre-kpages.com/dramatic-play-hot-cocoa-stand/

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hot-Chocolate-Cafe-Dramatic-Play-2310597

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hot-Cocoa-Dramatic-Play-Resources-495860

http://www.daycarespacesandideas.com/blog/hot-chocolate-stand-dramatic-play-pack

http://weedstowishes.blogspot.com/2012/12/hot-chocolate-stand-printables.html

http://www.acupcakefortheteacher.com/2012/12/hot-chocolate-writing-center-updates.html

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/WINTER-Trace-and-Count-2240094

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hot-Cocoa-Open-Ended-Activity-1028696

 

What our Hot Cocoa Stand looks like…

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LEARNING KIT: Art

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This year for Christmas, the kids will be getting a Art Learning Kit. The kit is full of items that promote early art concepts as well as promoting fine motor skills, eye-hand coordination, creativity and imagination. The kids can paint, color, glue, stick, tape, stamp, cut, draw, string and create with this kit. Below you can see what I put in the kit, where you can get it and where to download the set of free Art Idea Cards…

(Each kit ran around $11.00)-Could possibly get for less if you pick up items at the beginning of the school year when school supplies are out…

Kit Includes:

  • Glue sticks
    ($0.50 a piece at Walmart)
  • Beads
    ($3.o0 a package at Walmart – split between 4 kits)
  • String
    ($1.00 for a package of 3 at Dollar Tree-split between 3 kits)
  • Foam Pieces
    ($1.o0 a package at Dollar Tree – split between 2 kits)
  • Colored Tissue Pieces
    ($1.o0 a package at Dollar Tree – split between 4 kits)
  • Construction Paper
    ($1.o0 a pad at Dollar Tree)
  • Fingerpaint
    ($1.o0 a package of 4 at Dollar Tree – split between 4 kits)
  • Scissors
    ($1.o0 a pair at Dollar Tree)
  • Art Book (not pictured, still waiting for delivery)
    ($3.73 a book on Amazon)
  • Stamps
    ($1.o0 a package of 6 at Walmart – split between 3 kits)
  • Glue
    ($1.o0 a bottle at Dollar Tree)
  • Stickers
    (Free, extras from Scholastic Book Orders)
  • Crayons
    ($1.o0 a box at Dollar Tree)
  • Paint Brushes
    ($4.o0 a package at Walmart – split between 4 kits)
  • Blank Books
    ($1.o0 a set of 3 at Target – split between 3 kits)
  • Pencils
    ($1.o0 a package of 12 at Target – split between 6 kits)
  • Art Idea Cards
    (Can download FREE at: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Art-Idea-Cards-2897402)Could also add:

    • Paint smocks
    • Markers
    • Colored Pencils
    • Watercolors
    • Tape
    • Washi Tape
    • Fabric Scraps
    • Yarn/Ribbon

INVOLVING CHILDREN IN COMMUNITY PROJECTS: Halloween Cards for Children’s Hospital

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MAKING HALLOWEEN CARDS FOR CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL:

This October I came across a request for cards for Children’s Hospital, so I had the kids make some. Even our 18 month old was able to help on this one.

Skills Worked on with this Project:
-Learned about hospitals and community helpers
-Talked about how we would feel if we couldn’t go somewhere for Halloween
-Fine Motor
-Creativity
-Imagination
-Discussed our Halloween traditions

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DRAMATIC PLAY: Pumpkin Patch

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For the months of September and October our dramatic play center is a: PUMPKIN PATCH

This is another new theme for us, so excited to see how it turns out. Great article to read on “How Dramatic Play Can Enhance Learning”: http://www.earlychildhoodnews.com/earlychildhood/article_view.aspx?ArticleID=751

Things to Gather for a PUMPKIN PATCH theme:
-Maps
-Pumpkins
-Gords
-Hay Bales
-Leaves
-Rakes
-Scales
-Calculators
-Cash Register
-Play Money
-Sale Stand
-Cameras
-Dress Up Clothes
-Phones
-Books about fall
-Books about pumpkins
-Photos of area pumpkin patches
-Clipboards
-Paper & Pens

More resources to set up a pumpkin patch center:
http://www.pre-kpages.com/dramatic-play-pumpkin-patch/

http://www.pocketofpreschool.com/2016/09/pumpkin-patch-dramatic-play.html

http://teaching2and3yearolds.com/preschool-dramatic-play-pumpkin-stand/ 

What our Pumpkin Patch looks like…

INVOLVING CHILDREN IN COMMUNITY PROJECTS-Making Food for Volunteers

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MAKING FOOD FOR VOLUNTEERS

This September, our town experienced a flood threat. A few days before the flood happened, the town joined together to protect the town by relocating residents, putting up Hesco barriers and sandbagging. This month for our Community Project, the children formed an assembly line and made sandwiches to take to volunteers at the sandbagging sites.

Skills Worked on with this Project:
-Learned about helping others in need
-Talked about our community
-Discussed weather and natural disasters
-Learned about assembly lines
-Used teamwork to make the sandwiches
-Fine motor skills were used in making/packaging the sandwiches

DRAMATIC PLAY: News Station

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For the months of May and June our dramatic play center is a: NEWS STATION

This is another new theme for us, so excited to see how it turns out. Great article to read on “How Dramatic Play Can Enhance Learning”: http://www.earlychildhoodnews.com/earlychildhood/article_view.aspx?ArticleID=751

Things to Gather for a NEWS STATION theme:
-Maps
-Microphones
-Cameras
-Tripod
-Desk
-Dress Up Clothes
-Phones
-Weather Books
-Books about your state
-Photos of news stations
-Clipboards
-Camcorder
-Headsets
-Paper & Pens
-Clocks

More resources to set up a news station center:
https://www.pinterest.com/schoolready13/dramatic-play-weather-station/

https://www.pinterest.com/katie1487/news-station-dramatic-play/

What our News Station looks like…

 

 

DRAMATIC PLAY: Dinosaur Cave

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For the months of March and April our dramatic play center is a: DINOSAUR CAVE

This is a brand new theme for us and based off the current interest of my group. They are obsessed with dinosaurs right now!

Great article to read on “How Dramatic Play Can Enhance Learning”: http://www.earlychildhoodnews.com/earlychildhood/article_view.aspx?ArticleID=751

Things to Gather for a DINOSAUR CAVE theme:
-Dinosaur posters
-Dinosaur books
-Dinosaur toys
-Dinosaur bones
-Big box for a cave
-Dress Up Clothes
-Clipboards
-Excavation Tools
-Plants

More resources to set up a dinosaur cave center:

http://playtolearnpreschool.us/dinosaur-dramatic-play/ http://www.prekfun.com/themes/prekthemes/a-f/dinosaurs/Dinosaurs__DramaticPlay.htm

http://www.preschoolrainbow.org/dinosaur.htm

https://www.pinterest.com/search/pins/?q=dinosaur%20dramatic%20play&rs=typed&0=dinosaur%7Ctyped&1=dramatic%7Ctyped&2=play%7Ctyped

What our Dinosaur Cave looks like…

CHILDREN’S COMMUNITY PROJECTS: Color-A-Smile

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May 2016 Community Project:

This was a new project for us. I think I found it through Pinterest. We colored coloring sheets that were printed from the Color-A-Smile website and sent them in for them to distribute.

Website: http://colorasmile.org/

Skills Learned/Worked On During This Project:
-Talked about helping others
-Talked about feelings
-Worked on color recognition
-Fine Motor Skills
-Talked about bugs (our coloring sheets has a caterpillar)
-Talked about the weather (our coloring sheets has a sun on them)

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LEARNING KIT: Math Play Box

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This year for Birthdays, the kids will be getting a Math Play Learning Kit. The kit is full of items that promote early math concepts. Below you can see what I put in the kit, where you can get it and where to download the set of free Math Play Idea Cards…
(Each kit ran less than $9.00)

Kit Includes:

  • Number Spinner
    (Found at Dollar Tree for $1.00 per package, think was a set of 6)
  • Foam Blocks (in different colors &/or shapes)
    (Found at Dollar Tree for $1.00 a set)
  • Number Flash Cards
    (Found at Dollar Tree for $1.00 a set)
  • Fraction Pieces
    (Found in the Target Dollar section for $1.00 a set)
  • Number Puzzles
    (Found in the Target Dollar section for $1.00 a package, think was a set of 6)
  • Number Matching Wheel
    (Found in the Target Dollar section for $1.00 a set)
  • Dice
    (Found at Dollar Tree for $1.00 a set)
  • Rulers
    (Found at Dollar Tree for $1.00 a package, came with 3 I think)
  • Pen & Paper
    (Already had in bulk in storage)
  • Math Play Idea Cards
    (Can download FREE at: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Math-Play-Idea-Cards-2489159 )

    I try to find items that will fill a shoe box and the above items were about all I could fit, but you could also add:
    -Deck of Cards
    -Thermometers
    -Levels
    -Scales