I hope this finds you all well. It’s “Autumn Time!” I just wanted to drop a quick update on how things are going in the classroom. It is very exciting to see the 3rd year children independently assuming new responsibilities and roles. They have been choosing to help the younger children put work away, cleaning up “messes that they didn’t even do (as one child put it). Children in their 2nd year are entering confidently each day, as they have been realizing that the skills they worked so hard on developing last year can be of service this year and help younger children. The younger children are so happy to be here. I see lots of spontaneous hugs and dances! Everyone is adapting to the complexities of moving freely in a community, taking care of themselves, choosing their activities that they are getting lessons on, using them with concentration and returning them to the shelves ready for others to use. There have been times where it has been challenging—for new children and returning children alike. Remembering to walk around a rug (not stepping on someone else’s work) and to wait until someone puts a work back on the shelf or waiting until you get a lesson on how to use a material requires A LOT!!! of patience. I like to call it wait training. We are developing new levels of our character. Aspects of this will continue throughout the year as the children continue to blossom, but I think we are through the thick of it, the initial orientation period that is.
It has been a great season for food projects. Some of the older children have been baking bread and cooking soup to complement our other snack items. Also, please enjoy the recipe that Gretchan Jackson, Rory’s mom, has provided. Gretchan (Rory’s mom) came to visit us in extended day several weeks ago and helped us make pickles the fermented way. They are delicious! We are using them in our food slicing work. Also, thank you Jennifer (Flora’s mom) for donating delicious grapes for making grape juice and apples for making apple sauce. We love seasonal and local produce projects!
Some families have inquired about my office hours. I am available for phone conversations Mondays 3:30 – 4:30 by appointment. If you ever have any concerns that feel urgent, please call and let us know. Andrea has a different availability and can often field any concerns or questions you might have. Notes are also excellent. If you would like to be contacted by me directly, please indicate that on the note and we can make an appointment.
Thanks for helping your children through a challenging orientation time. Please do not fret if your child does not share much of his/her day with you. One way to assist them in opening up voluntarily, is to model speaking about your day. Over dinner together, for example, you could share, “Today at work, I …”, sharing something you did in a way your child can relate to. Avoid pressing your child, as this might create an obstacle to future sharing. You may need to model this every day for a month or so before your child will be able to share.