Last December, when the children were making felt ornaments, I observed that some children were interested in sewing with the felt. In order to get an idea for an activity they could do, I brainstormed using a web of possibilities.
After brainstorming I decided to introduce a loom to the children and taught them how to weave. Unfortunately, only a few children were able to weave because there was only one loom in my centre which was not enough for everyone to participate.
We live in an unprecedented time. Information and research on mask-wearing and its impact on child development are limited. To be frank: there is almost none. As new information trickles in, parents and adults working with children have to make the best decision based on the information at hand at the time, even if we wish we had more information to better guide us.
As resource consultants, one of the supports that we provide to programs is equipment for inclusion in the classroom. Some of our most commonly used items are alternative seating options for circle and group time activities. Group time can be challenging for children who may have trouble staying still, difficulties concentrating, or limited ability to wait. They may also have challenges processing sensory input such as the classroom noise level or the proximity of others.
If a person can be in love with a book, then I’m in love with The Canadian Kids’ Guide to Outdoor Fun. It reminds me of my childhood, of summers spent building forts, creating a kids’ only clubhouse, lots of nature hikes, inviting neighbours over to watch a play, doing science experiments, playing games and outdoor cooking. The book also has many modern twists on “how to”. For example, how to preserve a spiderweb, how to stay safe in the woods, how to whistle on a blade of grass and how to make a watermelon pizza.
The Choiceworks app is an excellent app that can be used for establishing visual schedules for children who struggle with transitions and multi-step tasks. It can also be a great visual tool helping children calm down when they are upset. Users can create an unlimited number of schedules from a large collection of images. The app also allows users to create a visual wait screen and offers the child choices regarding what they can do while they wait. The app is perfect for children who need help adapting to a schedule, managing time or improving patience. It is easy to use and relatively inexpensive. It has been my “go to” app when I worked as an Educational Assistant and I continue to use it as an ECE. Recommended for ages 3+.
As the back-to-school preparations are ramping up, parents are thinking on how to best prepare their child for school. Parents all wonder how their little one will fair off. We secretly hope that everything we have done for them since birth will have given them the tools needed to continue to grow, learn and be ready for school.