Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Best Gratitude List Ever

With Thanksgiving comes the official start of the holidays, and there is oh so much we can all say about that. However, I can assure you that anything I have to say about thankfulness is not nearly as amazing as what our kids have to say about it. So with that, I will turn the blog over to them.  I asked the kids to lay it out for me: What are you thankful for? Like a big happy sticky wave of gratitude, I was almost physically laid out as the kids rushed to tell me all the things they are thankful for. And that almost says it all… ALMOST:

What are you thankful for? 

Sterling 4: Seeing the biggest rainbow ever.
Jack 4: I am thankful my mom got me new footie pajamas.
Jordan 2: French fries!
Asher 2: iPad.
Brady 3: I’m thankful across the whole North Carolina land.
Catherine 2: Santa Claus.
Sienna 5: My dog and my mom, because she got me that dog.
Addison 4: Co-cola with my g ma and pa pa.
Ronan 2: A football guy. #1 Camden Newton!
Emmie 2: I’m thankful for my sissy and mommy.
Rosa Lu 2: I want to tell you something. Grandma and grandpa are coming to mine house for Thanksgiving.
Ben 4: Bread all the tiiiime.
Avery 2: Nate!
Tyler 3: I dunno.
Charlotte 4: A long time ago, I came downstairs after nap, and my dad was painting a turkey with butter.
Luke 4: I’m thankful for people coming to my house.
Nicholas 2: Grandma! Grandpa!
Elsie 4: A volcano. Booom!
Carissa 4: I’m thankful for church.
Brandon 4: Ketchup, eggs, and pie…. in your face! Hahahaha! 
Sarah Grace 4: I’m just thankful for my family.
Shayna 4: I’m thankful for Lexi because she plays with me.
Quincy 4: School!
Porter 3: I’m thankful for my uncle Bill.
Gib 4: Christmas! Presents and my whole family coming.
Nico 4: I’m thankful for my sister, my dad and my mother, ‘cus I love them.
Andy 4: God and stuff.
Maddie 4: I am thankful because my mom is making gooseberry pie, and I am inviting Anna Leigh and Wyatt and Andy.
Noah 3: Getting a haircut for my grandma and my grandpa.
Wylie 4: The whole class.
Samantha 1: Wash hands. 
Bryce 3: I'm thankful for dresses. 
Willa 4: Not being sick anymore.
Evan 3: Cookies. No. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah!
Alex 4: I can’t tell you.
Vera 1: Earrings. Kitties. Gentle flowers. 
Isabel 2: Sometimes, I love meat.  

Your kids are awesome. Absolutely awesome. On behalf of TLS, we are thankful to all of you for sharing your wonderful children with us. Through their highs and lows, tears and sparkles, they remind us everyday that we have the very best job in the world. Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 9, 2012

The Case of the Missing Gerbils

There are oodles of paths to learning, and bazillions of theories on the best early education practices. Obviously, the best way to learn is to LOVE what you are doing. Easy-peasy right? However, we all love different things and learn in different ways. If you are going to get me anywhere near interested statistics, you are going to have to think WAAAY outside the box. How oh how do you make that work in a classroom with 18 different kids, with 18 different strengths and 18 different visions? I asked Laura of the Diving Dolphin's to tell us about a recent project that sparked brain magic in their kids.

"Several weeks ago, the Diving Dolphins became interested in maps, mysteries, and spy glasses. Soon we were seeing mysteries everywhere! Every lost sock and missing marker cap became an opportunity to look for clues and solve the puzzle. The class started to come up with questions, and search for the answers. Why did Mr. Sean cut down that tree? Did he need to make a wooden pumpkin out of it? We tracked down Mr. Sean and found out the truth. We made our own spyglasses and maps, and used them to navigate the playspaces and the woods.

"This week, we came across the biggest mystery so far: our gerbils, named Cat and Snake, went missing! We followed clues and solved puzzles all over the school, magnifying glasses in hand, until at last we found our pets and returned them to our room! We were so happy to see them, and have been talking about the "long mystery" for days." - Laura Hasslam

Aside from the obvious fun and excitement two lost gerbils generates, what's going on here? What's the point? First and foremost, the kids had more FUN then a barrel full of gerbils. Moreover, their investigation into mysteries worked every nook and cranny of their spongy little minds- investigating the mystery, searching for clues, and hazarding guesses flexed their cognitive development such as problem solving, persistence, and memory. As the kids poured over maps and metaphorical knots, they stretched language and literacy development. They followed multiple stepped instructions, print concepts, and even used math and counting skills. So yes, they had fun, but with the purposeful guidance of their teachers, they also continued to build and grow into not simply learners, but THINKERS and visionaries!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Happy Fall Fest!

I am happy to report that our fall fest was a huge success! With the help of our superstar parent ambassadors, each room planned wonderful fall-tastic event's. There were parades, art projects, special fall treats (my favorite part) and of course costumes aplenty! We had *approximately* three Buzz Lightyears, five witches, three bumblebees, four ladybugs, two airplane pilots, two strawberries, a bakers dozen of various fowls, eight firefighters, exactly nine million princesses, one Yoda, and one Slash... because truly, there can be only ONE Yoda and ONE Slash. Thanks again for a wonderful fall fest. It was great to see all the teachers, parents and kids come together and just have a great time!



Do you have even better photos of the event? Post them to our facebook page! (Just be sure that they are of YOUR children only, or you have permission from others parents!)