Submitted by Rachel Samoff on Mon, 11/01/2010 - 12:49pm
I have a story to tell you. It’s about teachers and children making connections. The first thing any teacher of young children needs to do if learning and growth is to happen is to form loving, supportive relationships with each child. So when our children move to their new classes in September, teachers and children work hard on forming these connections to lay the foundation for the learning and growth that needs to take place.
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Thu, 10/28/2010 - 10:27am
Halloween is coming right up. Classrooms are filled with fall and Halloween art and excited talk about Halloween costumes and trick or treating. Here are some safety tips if your family is planning on going out trick or treating.
CPSC is happy to announce an additional Enrichment Program, BookTree. BookTree is a monthly book-lending program for children from infancy to about age seven. Each month, BookTree delivers personalized totes containing ten high-quality, illustrated, age-appropriate books to CPSC. The benefits of BookTree include:
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Fri, 10/15/2010 - 11:53am
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) refers to the sudden, unexpected death of an infant under age 1. The causes of SIDS are not entirely understood. It is believed that there is likely a combination of factors involved, such as a biological risk factor combined with environmental factors. Fortunately, there are steps to take that can reduce the risk of SIDS.
Our NAEYC Accreditation is something of which we are very proud. It is a confirmation that our school maintains the very highest standards of early care and education. In the past few years, the NAEYC Academy which administers the NAEYC Accreditaiton program added a new component to its oversight of schools in this program. They conduct random, unannounced visits where they spend 10 hours looking at records and observing half our classrooms to verify that we adhere to the Accreditation standards in our everyday operations between Accreditaion renewal periods.
Setting limits with our preschoolers is challenging for the vast majority of us. We struggle to do this effectively. Sometimes the best technique when a child is really upset and not doing what you want, is to simply let the child be angry until they're done. I watched a parent do this very successfully one evening when her child was lying on the floor of the office refusing to get up and join the rest of the family who were waiting outside the front door to go home. First the child wanted her mom to come in and get her. After the mom and dad changed places, she cried for her dad.
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Wed, 09/08/2010 - 10:49am
A fever is usually a sign that there is an infection in the body. Fever is not an illness itself; it is a symptom of illness. Although there are times that fevers can be a sign of serious illness, often they are not dangerous and can even be helpful.
Fevers can help the body fights infection. The increased temperature can help the body’s immune system work better and can also make it harder for some bacteria and viruses to grow in the body.
Awhile ago I posted a blog on risk taking and young children. I find this a really fascinating topic. Every human parent takes keeping their child safe as a fundamental responsibility. So why should we let our children take risks? How does that fit in with keeping them safe? I ran across another really good article on this subject I want to share. It makes the point that teaching children to assess risk is a very important part of their learning. Enjoy!
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Mon, 08/23/2010 - 10:26am
Earlier, I talked about the importance of vaccination. Currently, there are many vaccinations that children (and adults) receive. This is good news; it means there are many diseases that children will not be infected with. Sometimes, though, all of the abbreviations and vaccine names can get confusing. Here are some descriptions of common vaccinations.
I often say children are little learning machines. You really don’t have to tell any child that learning is a good idea. They know that. They spend all their time and energy on the task of learning. As I was walking through the toddler yard the other day I saw a fantastic example of this that contains important feedback for teachers and parents.
You have heard from me before about the very important role dramatic play has in a young child’s learning and education. To help us focus as a school on enriching our dramatic play, we have been having regular time set aside in our staff meetings for teachers to report on the dramatic play that is going on in their classrooms. At our last staff meeting one of our teachers shared a terrific example of how rich in educational content dramatic play can be.
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Thu, 08/05/2010 - 10:08am
August is National Immunization Awareness month. Immunizations help to protect children (and adults) against many serious illnesses. Through immunization programs, many diseases that were once common causes of sickness, disability, and death have been reduced or even eliminated.
On July 16th at 4:00 in the afternoon, after several weeks of practice, our graduates, their teachers, and the families of the graduates gathered in the Senior Preschool yard for their graduation ceremony. Graduation clothes were donned, performance props were gathered, chairs were arranged . . . we were ready! The parents were seated and when all was ready, the graduates danced in to a jazzy piece of music to take their seats.
I had a really eye-opening conversation with one of our teachers the other day. This teacher was working her way through some challenges in her life. I asked her how she was doing as I greeted her one morning. She recounted how the children were helping her and giving her the strength she needed. Here’s what she said. (The names below have been changed to preserve privacy.)
Submitted by Rachel Samoff on Tue, 07/27/2010 - 9:04am
I have two stories on how children develop an understanding of time.
One comes from my 91 year old mother who went with my sister, her children, and grandchildren for a week at the beach. Two of the grandchildren are 3 years old. They spent a lot of time commenting on how old their Great Grandmother was. They would ask her questions like, “Why are your toes so lumpy?” My mother would smile and reply, “Because I’m really old!”
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Wed, 07/21/2010 - 11:44am
Last week I wrote about hand, foot, and mouth disease, which is often caused by a type of enterovirus known as coxsackievirus. There are other types of enteroviruses that can also cause illness during the summer months. One serious enterovirus is poliovirus, which causes polio. Fortunately, vaccination programs have eradicated polio from the United States, and vaccines continue to protect children from this serious illness. Other types of enterovirus cause much milder illness. For instance, some enteroviruses cause what is sometimes called a “summer cold.”
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Tue, 07/13/2010 - 10:28am
Another rash that tends to be more common in the summer months is hand, foot, and mouth disease. This is a common rash that is caused by a virus, usually an enterovirus such as a coxsackie virus. Since different viruses can cause this rash, a child can get it more than once. It is not the same as foot and mouth or hoof and mouth disease in animals.
Children start working on peer relationships even before they are mobile. During the years between birth and six, children spend lots of time and energy working on social skills. As the article, 'Children's Peer Relationships Have Enormous Influence' indicates, a child's skills at entering a group of peers, self expression, assertion, listening, negotiation, empathy, and forgiveness are very important for a successful learning and a satisfying childhood.
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Tue, 07/06/2010 - 10:58am
Although we often think of winter and fall as the times of year when children and adults are more likely to get sick, there are a number of infections that are more common during the summer.
Impetigo is a contagious rash caused by bacteria. There are two main types of bacteria that cause impetigo: streptococcal and staphylococcal. These bacteria enter the skin through small cuts or scratches and cause the infection. Impetigo can occur anywhere on the body, but is most common around the nose and mouth and on the forearms, hands, and diaper area.
We’re all seeing articles and reports of research on the importance of giving children unrestricted and unstructured time to play. In our busy lives with our emphasis on education, some of us tend to fill up our children’s time with lessons, excursions, and lots of coaching from the adults. What gets left out is time for children to simply play and work on their own ideas, relying on their own resources.
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Thu, 06/17/2010 - 1:47pm
I would like to share two recent health advisories from the California Department of Public Health. In the last few months, there have been increases in the number of cases of two vaccine-preventable diseases, measles and whooping cough (also called pertussis).
Submitted by Rebecca Q. on Wed, 06/16/2010 - 11:36am
The Environmental Law Foundation (ELF), an Oakland-based group that addresses environmental issues, recently released some findings about lead levels in several types of food items. These include apple juice, grape juice, packaged pears and peaches, and fruit cocktail. ELF chose these products to test because they are ones that children are likely to eat regularly.
Take a look at this article 'Plugged-In Parents' to help you reflect on the quality of your time with your children when you are with them as you drop them off at school, pick them up, or take them to the park.
Submitted by Rachel Samoff on Thu, 06/10/2010 - 10:57am
I was passing through all our classrooms this morning greeting teachers, parents and children as I normally do. Aidan, a 3 year old, was working on a sticker/drawing he was creating. I knelt down and watched him working. “What are you making?” Silence. I waited a bit while Aidan drew dark purple lines on his paper. I tried again. “You have 3 motorcycles there.” Aidan said, “Hate!” “Hate?” I queried. “Hate,” he repeated. “Is that hate you are drawing?” “Yes!” “Did you have a hard morning?” “No.