Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Beauty And The Beast

The AM sesion of preschool was treated to a dress rehersal of Beauty And The Beast. The students of Burlington High School will preform the play this weekend and tickets are still available. They can be purchased at or by calling 781-A-FUN-TIC. The dress rehersal was very impressive and if you have time this weekend it would be a fun family activity.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Picture Make up day

Wednesday April 6th will be make up day for anyone that was absent on picture day. You can also have your child's picture retaken on this day as well. If you would like your child photographed on April 6th please call Laura Caprio, program secretary, to let her know. She will be coordinating a schedule for the photographer. Laura can be reached at 781-270-1808

How to Make Slime

Making slime is a fun sensory activity that all children enjoy.

How to Make Slime Without Borax or Liquid Starch

updated: February 04, 2011

How to Make Slime Without Borax or Liquid Starchthumbnail
Use a saucepan to make slime for your children.

Making homemade slime can be a fun rainy-day activity for kids. There are number of recipes for this gooey substance, and many of them call for borax or liquid starch. Although these ingredients are not overly dangerous, they can be harsh and can cause skin reactions for some children. It is possible, and easy, to make slime without these ingredients by using cornstarch instead.



things you'll need:

  • Saucepan
  • Bowl
  • Large zip-top bag
  • Stove
  • 1 part water
  • 2 parts cornstarch
  • Food coloring
    • 1

      Warm the water in the saucepan. Do not bring the water to a boil--it needs to be warm, but not scalding hot. The purpose of heating the water is to keep the cornstarch from clumping together.

    • 2

      Pour the heated water into the bowl and add food coloring. The color is a matter of personal choice, and a few drops are all that are necessary. Kids can get really creative here. Stir until the color is well blended. Keep in mind that the cornstarch will lighten the color, so if you want a more intense color, add more food coloring. A typical slime color is lime green, but you can choose any color your child wants.

    • 3

      Add the cornstarch a little at a time, at a slow and steady pace.

    • 4

      Blend the mixture until smooth. It's OK to use fingers for this step. Have your child help with this mixing once the water feels cooled off enough.

    • 5

      Add more cornstarch slowly if the slime is too runny, or more hot water if the slime is too thick.

    • 6

      Keep the slime in a zip-top bag to make sure that it stays moist.

Read more: How to Make Slime Without Borax or Liquid Starch |

Monday, March 21, 2011

Oral Language Development

Here are some typical developmental patterns in oral language development and some ways to participate its growth:

AgeVerbal Milestones
Ways To Participate
ToddlerDevelop muscular control of their lips and tongues.

May begin only knowing “mama” and “dada” and in a few months string together phrases to indicate things, such as “Owside” for “Let’s go outside and play.”
Use simple sentences, especially when you want an immediate response. Your child’s language comprehension has grown. However, she may only recognize a few words in a complete sentence.

Give your child simple directions to follow, such as “Put the book on the shelf and come here.”

Continue reading daily. Try nursery rhymes because they are great for short attention.

PreschoolerStart talking more like you—with some quirks.

Use language to communicate what and how she wants to play.
Communicate in honest but simplified terms to explain what she can expect to happen, such as “Daddy will pick you up from daycare today” or “Your friend Autumn will be here soon.”

Teach your preschooler to express her feelings and to use proper manners.

Limit television viewing. The amount of television that your child watches is a personal decision. While making this decision, keep in mind television’s ability to teach language is only a fraction of what you can do one-on-one.

KindergartnerUse more complex language skills.

Ask probing questions that extend beyond her immediate world, such as, “Why do things look small when they’re far away?”

May use language to express negative emotions towards others.
Ask open-ended questions. Without badgering, prompt your child to explain what she is thinking and doing.

Answer your child’s questions honestly and in a way that encourages conversation.

Teach your child that cruel words are never allowed and help her to rephrase negative statements about others.

Listen. Taking time to listen carefully and frequently communicates that you value her and her ability to communicate.

Keep in mind that language develops in various ways and at various speeds. Therefore, if other children the same age show signs of greater development, you do not need to be overly concerned. However, be sure to discuss any observations about possible delays with your pediatrician to be sure that an intervention is not needed.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Five Little Speckled Frogs

The children will be learning
this song this week to go along with shadows and reflections. All of the students seem to love this one. Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Its not easy being green.

This week many of the classrooms are finishing up the unit on colors. As I was searching You Tube for a video I came across this song from Sesame Street. I thought it was fitting to go along with our color unit.

Developmental Stages of Block Play


Developmental Stages of Block Play

Block play is such an important part of the early childhood classroom. It provides potent opportunities for creativity, imagination, problem solving, and foundational mathematical understandings. It is something that actually has a developmental sequence to it - like writing or drawing. I love to watch the expansion of block play in the kindergarten. It becomes such a world in itself! I find it fascinating that the way children use the blocks can actually tell me something about their developmental growth cognitively.

Stage 1 Tote and Carry (2 and 3 years old)
At this stage, one of the first activities is the act of carrying around the blocks or piling them. It is a full sensory experience as the child experiences the smoothness, the weight, the size and the sounds they make when they drop the blocks. In this stage, the child is learning about blocks and what blocks can do.

Stage 2 Building Begins (3 years old)
At this stage, a child will pile the blocks to make a tower or lay the blocks on the floor in rows, either horizontally or vertically. There is much repetition in their building. It is in this stage that the first application of imagination occurs as props such as cars or trucks are used on "roads."

Stage 3 Bridging (3 and 4 years old)
At this stage children begin to experiment connecting two blocks with a space between them with a third block. Children learn to bridge by trial and error as they begin to explore balance and their eye-hand coordination improves.

Stage 4 Enclosures (4 years old)
At this stage, a child will place blocks so to enclose a space. This shows an understanding of inside and outside. Enclosures, like bridges, become landscapes for imaginative play with props like dollhouse dolls, farm animals and such. Enclosures and bridging are the first "technical" acts of block building that children accomplish.

Stage 5 Representational Building (4 and 5 years old)
At this stage you will see children using symmetry, patterns, balance, and designs to create buildings. There is an element of dramatic play to their block building. The play can include naming the structure and its function (and letting those who interfere or who try to redesign know they are wrong!). If you teach pre-k or Kindergarten you know that if two children are building a specific structure and a third child attempts to alter the structure - upset results!

Stage 6 Complex Building (5 years old and up)
By age 5, the dexterity and skill of block play is quite elaborate! You will see curved buildings, multiple levels, the building over other structures and toys. The children are in the stage of cooperative play and it is not uncommon for discussions of what they want to build, how they may build the structures and what part each will play in the "drama". At this stage it is helpful to have a wide range of sizes and types of blocks available.

Monday, March 7, 2011

11 Ways to Make Errands Fun

By Samantha Cleaver

The idea of taking a young child along for an afternoon of errands can be daunting. But with a little preparation and a few fool-proof activities, errands can quickly become fun learning experiences. The key? Keeping kids engaged and participating the whole day through.

Dr. Lillian Katz, professor emerita with the University of Illinois Clearinghouse on Early Childhood and Parenting, says that parents should explain what they’re going to do before even leaving the house. Telling your child, “first we’re going to get gas, then we’re going to the grocery store, and last we’re going to the dry cleaners,” helps them develop an understanding of sequence.

In the Car

How to manage directions, traffic, and the uncomfortable, bored kid in the back seat? Make the car something to look forward to with songs and games.

  • Stage a Sing-Along. Instead of buying CDs or cueing up the iPod, sing with your child as you drive from place to place. Spice up sing-alongs by leaving out the rhyming words for her to fill in, or letting her choose animals or people to insert into favorites like Old MacDonald or The Wheels on the Bus.
  • How Many Do You See? Build your child’s number skills by counting trees, stop signs, intersections, or blue cars. Capitalize on your child’s natural interests by seeing how many of his favorite things (dump trucks, dogs, etc) he can find.
  • Habitat BINGO. Make a BINGO card with pictures of different homes—apartments, big houses, small houses, nests, doghouses—for your child to find. As he checks them off, ask who lives there and why it might be a good place to live.
  • Words in our World. As you travel around town, point out common words; stop, exit, open, closed, sale. First, tell your child what each word means. “Oh, I see S-T-O-P on this sign, that means stop. Do you see it?” After you’ve found the word a few times, ask him if he can read it.

In the Grocery Store

Every aisle of the grocery store (or any store) is a built-in lesson. Here are a few activities to keep your child busy.

  • Weigh It. Ask your child to help you find the fruits and vegetables on your shopping list. Ask him to choose the best apples or peppers and weigh them. Once you have your produce, ask him to compare the items. Which is heavier? Which is heaviest? Lightest?
  • Coupon Hide-and-Seek. Cut out a few coupons before you leave your house. As you shop, have your child find the items. Draw your child’s attention to how the store is organized. “Do you think we will find the milk in the same aisle as the yogurt?” It doesn’t matter if you buy it or not, the fun is in the finding.
  • Check-Out I Spy. In the check-out aisle, ask your child to find items in your cart by describing characteristics. “I spy an item that goes in the freezer” or “I spy something red and round.”

At the Doctor’s Office

Whether you’re waiting for a pediatrician or a dentist, “you’re not going to teach your child how to wait,” says Jean Warren, publisher of, “but you can make waiting fun.”

  • Hot or Cold? If you’re the only ones waiting, hide a small object around the waiting room and prompt your child to find it by telling him how hot or cold he is as he moves around the room. Then, let him hide it and direct you to find it.
  • Measure It. Stock your purse with a measuring tape and measure chairs, magazines, tables, or anything that sits still long enough! Talk about which things are long, short, tall, and wide.

Waiting in Line

Maximize waiting time by building language skills.

  • In Their Place. Waiting in line is the perfect time to introduce the idea of ordinal numbers. First, count the people in line using words (first, second, third, etc). Then, describe a person (“I see a person with a red hat and a big brown box to mail”) and ask your child to tell you their place in line.
  • Story Builder. Any waiting time is a good time to start a story. Choose a starter, “Once upon a time” or “There once was a pirate.” Then, take turns adding sentences until you come to a natural "The End."

Errands can be an exciting excursion for young children. The key, though, is getting the involved at every moment, so make sure to leave the house prepared and you’ll be in for a productive—and fun—day around town!