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Professional Weather Lessons!

Meteorologist Scott Hetsko of WHAM 13 really blew us away when he came to visit the Henrietta Kindergarten class!  He got us really excited to learn all about weather and was eager to answer all of our questions.

Mr. Hetsko brought a pressure contraption made out of a two-liter bottle with water in it and an air pump. The system emulated the making of a cloud!  Each student had a turn to feel the pressure in the bottle and see the puff of cloud that emerged!

Next, we were able to tour the weather truck!  Mr. Hetsko showed us all the current weather stats on the screen and even let each student hop in the front seat to be “on camera”!  It was SO COOL!  We thoroughly enjoyed our visit from the local weatherman and made our weather lesson that much more special!  A big thank you to WHAM 13 and Scott Hetsko for visiting and sharing with us!

2017-03-02 00 Hetsko      2017-03-02 038 Hetsko      2017-03-02 015 Hetsko feat      2017-03-02 040 Hetsko

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Learning Centers!

At Care-a-lot, each classroom is arranged into learning centers.  This provides an ideal environment for teachers to actively engage children in meaningful, hands-on activities. Well-planned learning stations present children with challenging projects and opportunities for exploration, which encourage thinking skills and motor development

Beginning in the young toddler rooms, children at Care-a-lot move independently through the centers and choose to play in learning centers such as sensory, books, manipulatives, dramatic play, art, and blocks.  In this arrangement, children learn organizational skills, an important concept to begin to master!

As children grow and become more independent, additional centers are added to expand the curriculum opportunities. This provides for the social, emotional, physical and mental stages of early childhood development.

Materials are also changed to refresh the learning centers and add new opportunities for exploration and learning.  By rotating materials, teachers ensure that the centers remain fresh. Rotation also allows teachers to provide learning centers which focus on developing separate and distinct skill sets.

Centers Gr      Centers Gr 2      Centers Gr 3

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Reading Aloud!

The children at Care-a-lot of Farmington / Canandaigua recently enjoyed a center-wide author study of Dr. Seuss.  From the infants to the school-age children, everyone was in on the action!  Both teachers and children read many of this famous author’s books.  They also extended their learning with sensory activities related to the stories they read, nutrition learning based on food items mentioned in some of the books, fine motor skill building with a variety of arts and craft activities, and much more.

However the main focus was on reading aloud.  Dr. Seuss books lend themselves perfectly to reading aloud to all ages.  There is something to charm every person, “no matter how small;” from the sing-song rhyming scheme, to the moral lessons, to the whimsical illustrations.  The stories of this wonderful author are a great way to engage children!

Reading aloud to children is an important and enjoyable way to build for their future.  Reading aloud helps with language development, builds literacy skills, instills a love of reading, encourages brain development, aids in teaching many content areas, and provides opportunities for bonding time.  Research shows that reading aloud is the single most important thing we can do to help children prepare for reading and learning!

Educator and author, Jim Trelease has this to say about the positive effects of reading aloud:
– The more you read, the more you know.
– The more you know, the smarter you grow.
– The smarter you are, the longer you stay in school.
– The longer you stay in school, the more diplomas you earn and the longer you are employed;     thus the more money you earn in a lifetime.
– The more diplomas you earn, the higher your children’s grades will be in school.
– The more diplomas you earn, the longer you live.

Reading aloud is always included in Care-a-lot’s daily plans.  It is never too early to start reading aloud to children.  Important learning and brain development is going on even if a child is chewing on the books or seeming not to pay attention.  If you are looking for something to read at home with your child, we highly recommend anything by Dr. Seuss!

DSCN0083 Can Seuss      DSCN0090 (2)Can Seuss     DSCN0095 (2) Can Seuss

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Celebrating Differences!

At Care-a-lot, we encourage children to identify and celebrate the uniqueness of each individual. Research has shown that children develop their identity and attitudes through experiences with their bodies, social environments, and their cognitive developmental stages (Derman-Sparks, 1989). As these three factors interact, young children progress through certain stages of racial and cultural awareness.

Self-awareness begins when children are infants and toddlers. At these stages, children learn “what is me” and “what is not me.”  By age two, children recognize and explore physical differences. They are also learning the names of colors, and they begin to apply this to skin color. Natural curiosity will lead to questions about differences.

By the preschool age, children are better at noticing differences among people. They have learned to classify, and they tend to sort based on color and size. Many preschool children will comment – in words or through actions – on hair texture, eye shape, and other physical characteristics. They want to know how people got their color, hair texture, and eye shape.

Art experiences at Care-a-lot offer one way in which to celebrate our many colors and engage children in conversation about differences.  Enjoy these art projects made by the beautifully unique children of the Care-a-lot Henrietta center!

2017-02-14 014 (1) hen diff 1     2017-01-20 005 (1) hen diff 2    2017-02-14 013 (1) hen diff 3     2017-01-20 006 (1) hen diff 4     2017-02-14 015 (1) hen diff 5

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