Erupting Eggs in Creative Arts!
I was bored with the typical Easter Egg coloring methods....BORED!
Is that a terrible admission?
Teaching preschoolers is my passion. I have been at "my passion" for over 10 years and when holidays roll around and the "typical" crafts to go along with it, I am less than enthused (insert sigh...) If you are the parent of more than one little one, I am certain you can share my sentiment.
I originally ran across this idea when looking into some letter "V" activities on several other blog sites.
Here and Here
When I ran across Dinosaur Eggs I KNEW I would have a major hit on my hands! These kiddos LOVE everything messy, everything fizzy, everything creative!
Set up was easy, clean up was a breeze, but the place did smell like Easter for a few days because when you have 10 children coloring eggs it takes a TON of vinegar!
THAT LOOK! This little guy is a HANDS ON learner!! I allowed the children to mix all their own ingredients. I simply provided the baking soda, vinegar, and food colors with appropriate clothing and let them create, mix, and observe the show! Here he has just dipped his paintbrush into the vinegar and baking soda, then colors and it watching it erupt at the end of his paintbrush. Sensory, Creative Arts, Science...all rolled into FUN!!!
Fizzy fun that resulted in questions, observations, color mixing, and LOTS of colorful eggs. Perfect for pre-k!!
I wish you well and I hope you get to play today!
This is a post I have been meaning to write for some time...it isn't popular to say it, but I have been in a struggle. I have been looking, searching, hunting for a solution. Trying different methods, seeking out how to grow and learn from the struggle I have found myself in, in my heart and mind. What I have learned, however, is that often...God, in His wisdom, allows us to struggle FOR the strength we find and the resolve to persist.
It is a lessons that one of my itty bittiest babes has taught me as I have observed her dedication to learning how to zip her own coat. I zip it, she unzips it...then tries to zip it back. Then she gets frustrated, cries and needs me to help her again. I do, and within a split second the process begins again. This skill is one that she is determined to master. She has resolve, tenacity, and a determination that makes me respect her skill building persistence even though it often results in tears and tantrums. I do not get angry or frustrated that she unzips it again...it is a skill she must learn and this is the real life application of her learning independence.
She will not accept defeat. It isn't in her blood...even at 2. In the picture to the left she had just mastered putting the sunglasses on...all...by...herself! She wouldn't take them off for a LONG time. She was so proud!
Each one of my little ones possess strengths that make them unique and strong. These strengths, as they develop, are also some of their greatest sources of trial. Just like this little one I have been describing. Her determination is an incredible strength that will allow her overcome adversity later in life far greater than a zipper. However, that same determination, right now, means that she will not accept my help with her zipper until that is, in her opinion, her LAST option. I don't force my help on her...I allow her the time and space to struggle. I ask her if she is ready for me and when she emphatically says, "NO!", I wait. When she does finally come to me ready and accepting of help, I re-zip her little jacket knowing that it will only stay that way for a split second before it all starts again.
God, in His wisdom, allows us to do the same. He knows the skills we are developing. He allows us, again and again, to gain progress in these skills even though it will often mean failure. He is not angry when we fail...He knows we will. He knows it is in the struggle that our skills are sharpened and progress is made.
In this struggle with the zipper, she is finding strength. She is finding out what she is made of. She is strengthening her skills and her emotional resolve to do so. She is the stuff champions are made of. Watching her and listening to her struggle is VERY hard for me to do. My nature as a caregiver is to help. The more I ask, the more I notice her struggle...the more emotional she becomes. When I pretend not to see and give her room to grow, struggle, and tantrum, it also gives her the ability to decide when and how she wants my help and in fact, comes to me sooner for it.
So it is with God...I find that when I believe He is being quietest, He is actually just giving me the space I need to struggle, because it isn't just the destination of victory, but the resolve to keep trying that He is developing in me.
My struggle? My struggle has been in finding the time to make it all happen. The time to work, time to write, time to utilize all the opportunities knocking on my door, having quality time with my spouse, my own children, and helping my son with Algebra when naptimes are an ideal rather than a reality (not for me...but for the children in my care!), exercise, eat healthy (while eating handfuls of chocolate during Algebra sessions), lose that 10 pounds I regained but worked so hard to get off... For me, the strength I have found in the struggle is the same for her...ONE.STEP.AT.A.TIME...
The zipper is a challenge, but only for now. Soon, it will be automatic and nothing she ever even remembers as a problem. She will gain this skill as she keeps practicing, keeps failing, keeps asking for help, as she tries, and tries again. She will grow, and learn, and mature and looking back it will seem so easy.
This is my lesson too as I keep moving forward...step...by...step...relaxing in the process, enjoying the learning, realizing that growth is a part of the season of struggle, and the peace of knowing that it's IN the journey that real strength is found, skills are sharpened, and champions are made...
I wish you well and I hope you get to play today.
"Be careful what you teach, it might get in the way of what they are learning...Magda Gerber"
The above quote from Magda Gerber is definitely what we have been experiencing around here lately. There are times when, as a homeschool momma, a pre-k teacher, and an all around servant of small children (I wear that proudly!!) that I have to take a step back and see what's working and what isn't. As our little group grows and changes from season to season and our old routines become...well...old...I am posed to put my thinking cap on and determine what our best, next course is.
During the winter months the children have been content with arts and crafts, letters and numbers, playdough and cooking, parties and paints, but as the temperature's rise, so does their longing for the outdoors. Their natural inclination for the undiscovered and yet to be touched. They need...NEED...to own their time, their activity, their autonomy. Part of this is the age of the children, moving from 1's and 2's to 2's and 3's, this is a natural progression of development. Autonomy, the ability to choose, to think, to reason, to be under no "man's" or "preschool teacher's" clock. Ms. Melissa and I have discussed how rowdy our storytime's have become, how they just want to PLAY! We still fit in our storytime, but it has morphed more into group-story-making-up. Their recognition of the world around them, their own creativity, and how they can imagine a story is much more exciting now than sitting around listening to a book. So, group-story-making-up it is... This happens indepently of me some of the time, as an extension of their peer to peer play, and at other times, I have learned to utilize it as a means of teaching the days lessons.
Not a day goes by with these children that I am not their student. They teach me far more than a classroom, more than a mentor, more than a book ever could or ever has. All they ask is that I listen with my heart rather than my ears to what they are wanting to learn, to what they need. And...on the days that I remember this, we have grand success. On the days that I allow "what I am teaching to interfere with what they are learning" even though we may have measurable academic advancement, I have not touched their heart with learning. When I do, what they learn becomes so ingrained in them, that they will never forget it. They may forget the subject matter or the situation, but they will never forget the kindness, the love, the life lessons of friendship, sharing, caring for one another, or the ease of childhood that they experienced while under my watchful eye.
This will be a LONG blog post. I am going to attempt to catch everyone up on all the activities we have engaged in over the past several weeks. And, I hope, you will see between the lines of the A,b,c,'s and 1,2,3's and see the joy, the looks, the excitement for learning. THIS is my #1 goal as a "student" and "teacher" of and to these sweet children; a love for learning...
"Today I shall behave as though this is the day I shall be remembered." Dr. Suess
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