Last week we continued our Olympics theme introducing the balance beam! Many of the children were watching the Olympics with their families and when I brought out our "balance beam" they all knew EXACTLY what this was for.
Within moments they were placing one tiny foot in front of the other, carefully balancing and pretending to "dismount" appropriately at the end of the beam. Our beam, was simply a 1x4 that I had stained with weather sealant so it could remain outside throughout the week (and still is they love it so much) and placed directly on the ground for our younger children to safely cross.
Our 3's practiced rolls and placing their hand above their heads as they walked, ran and hopped across. It was precious to simply sit back and watch them pretend and play as they completed their "routine." You could tell by the concentration and look on their faces that they were, in fact, dreaming about being the little gymnasts that they viewed on the television.
This is where it all begins...in the innocent little hearts of young children. A tiny little dream that they are allowed to "pretend." This is just a very small part why "playtime" is so vital to infants, toddlers and preschool age children. This is when their heart tells their soul..."I CAN!" It's up to us as caregivers, parents, teachers to allow "I CAN" to remain, grow, THRIVE! They will find out, soon enough, that the world will try to knock that out of them. It's these precious moments that a little spark ignites in their spirit. It's my job to provide the tools...and I'm more than happy to do so...
Our Opening Ceremony was complete with flag bearers from each age group! The 1's, banged his flag on the ground...his head...other's toes! The 2's were simply into the spirit of flag waving and marching. The 3's understood the concept of a parade, lining up and marching to the left...then to the right...and back again. They too became frustrated that the 2's didn't really care about lining up, follwing directions or moving together. It was VERY fun for me to see the different developmental stages at work with such a simple and fun activity!
We also had torch bearers, of course! We made our "torches" with glittered and folded cardstock and multi-colored tissue paper strips that we all tore to shreds and glued to the top of each rectangular card. Once rolled and glued these resembled burning torches, sans the flame :).
I explained that Olympic Torch Runners will run a LONG, LONG, LONG way and take turns passing the torch and running with the torch to the place where the "games" will be and then they light the BIG CANDLE that is bigger than our kitchen so that EVERYONE can see it! So...we practiced running with our torches too, as seen here.
Now...what Olympics would be complete without Laurel Wreaths? We had to make these... First we tried to find suitable leaves to place on our bands, BUT with all the drought, all the leaves we found kept crumpling up and making a huge mess of our hands and glue. We had to find a different solution. One of our little 3's looked around and noticed the "pretend plant" I had in a wire basket on the table outside and said, "Look, Ms. Donna! LEAVES!!" She was correct, so we all worked together to disassemble the "pretend plant" and use LOTS of glue to place our everlasting leaves upon our wreaths.
Lots of opportunity to talk about exercise during this study...
Life is made of moments...
"There isn't anything more full of hope, joy and peace than a child's smile... It captures the mundane and makes it extraordinary." - LaDonna Woolsey
I am a Mother Goose Time Blogger. I decided to become one after trying their products because I they are comprehensive and serve my mixed age group well. I do receive products to review from Mother Goose Time and do so with my own honest and thorough opinions. For more information, please contact me at Ladonna@woolseyacademy.com