Category Archives: Educators / Providers

Seeing the Individual Child and Building Connections Using Conscious Discipline®

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The most important part of operating any child care program is to create an environment that provides comfort and a sense of community. School Age programs are often run in shared spaces, and so the flexibility in the environment is not as feasible as it would be in a permanent space. This encourages staff to think about the materials and structures that they can bring in, and the learning opportunities that they can provide to help meet the needs of each child. Using structures from Conscious Discipline® has guided our program in creating an environment that everyone feels a part of, and the individual child is acknowledged and supported.

We believe it is essential to make a point of greeting each child by name. Most of the children will opt to give us a high five or fist pump with the greeting, and some children choose to have a no touch greeting. Whatever the child chooses, the emphasis is on personal acknowledgment and a recognition that we are happy they are here. When there are a larger number of children in our care, too often we can lose track of names or specific personal details of the children.

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How To Talk So Little Kids Will Listen

A Survival Guide to Life with Children Ages 2-7
By Joanna Faber and Julie King

Book_May_EN“A Survival Guide to life with little children!”  Could this be true?

I am a mom of a lively 3 year old boy and a Resource Consultant (RC) who supports parents and Early Childhood Educators. I am thankful that I came across this book at our CISS resource library. Not only does it align with the practices used amongst our team of RC’s it also offers an abundance of fun, effective, concrete tools and tips that I couldn’t wait to begin implementing with my son and within my RC role.  Continue reading

Why are visuals important to use in your program?

Visuals are a tool to visually convey messages and ensure they are understood.

The purpose of visuals is:

  • To capture and sustain attention
  • To facilitate comprehension
  • To promote expressive communication
  • To organize physical space and material
  • To develop autonomy
  • To develop play and social skills
  • To encourage desired behaviour

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Natural Loose Parts

loose part 3.jpgLoose parts provide the foundation for a play-based emergent curriculum that focuses on inquiry driven learning. According to Simon Nicholson, the definition for loose parts states: “In any environment, both the degree of inventiveness and creativity, and the possibility of discovery, are directly proportional to the number and kind of variables in it.”

Nicholson, goes on to state that static, sterile environments such as schools and concrete playgrounds are often devoid of opportunities for curiosity, inventions, creativity and construction. These spaces are frequently rigid and unresponsive to the children who are expected to interact and flourish within their parameters.   Continue reading

Does adult screen time impact our children?

It seems there is a new article or research every week about the adverse effects of screen time on children. Too much screen time has been linked to child obesity, attachment issues, lack of sleep, delay in language acquisition and sensory overload to name just a few.

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While children are watching TV, using a computer, gaming device, tablet or smartphone, they are missing out on opportunities. Opportunities to make connections with the world around them including forging real relationships with peers and adults in their life; opportunities to problem solve, to be creative, to feel, touch, smell and make sense of their environment.  Continue reading

Sensory Play

As an educator I found myself frequently volunteering to wash the dishes at the end of the day, it was the perfect stress reducer for me and gave me the opportunity to reflect on my day. Sensory play is not only important for children but for adults too!

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Three personal sensory bins with moon sand to allow children easy access and choice. These bins have lids to allow them to stack for easy storage in an accessible area to promote independence. – Fairview Child Care.

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Ready for School? Language and literacy can help

First Words logo.jpgAs a parent, you are your child’s most important teacher. In fact, you have been preparing your child for school from the day that they were born. Everything you have done so far provided the foundation for your child to grow and learn throughout their lives! As a speech language pathologist, I understand the value of language in a child’s academic journey. But as a parent of three wonderful girls, I whole-heartily share the same concern every single parent has: Will my child be ready for school? Will he make friends? Will she know who to go to when she is hurt?  Whether you are this easy-going parent or “that mom” who follows the school bus to school (not that I would know anything about this personally!), when the first day of school suddenly arrives, we all wonder how our little one will fair off.  We all want our children to succeed, especially at school.  Today, we will talk and share about what we can do at home to get our child ready for kindergarten.  Continue reading