Whether you want it dipped, seasoned, rolled or simply as is, there’s no doubt that soft pretzels are a delicious treat that everybody loves! This month, you have all the right reasons to enjoy this tasty snack with the whole family. Why? Because it’s National Soft Pretzel Month! [Read more…]
As our kiddos get older it seems that more toys magically keep appearing. From birthdays, holidays, and random trips to the store-there seems to be an endless stream of toys and tiny pieces entering my home. As my youngest child reached a point where the baby toys I had been saving from the first no longer were in play, I started the process of decluttering. It can be such a struggle to make the time to do this, its truly the last thing you want to spend time on. But it MUST be done, or else… the Playroom/toy situation can become a horrendous hurricane of a mess with no end in sight!
The best thing that you can do to regain the order of the play room is to sort all the toys. Here are a few steps to help you get organized.
Sort the toys into these categories: keep, store, donate, or trash. After my youngest turned about two, I started to go though all the toys and got rid of all the cute baby age play items. If you plan to have other children, store them away in Rubbermaid containers and LABEL them! Label, Label, Label! Don’t think you will do it later, because you won’t! As soon as the lid goes on, label them-Keep/Toys/Age: Birth-2(or whatever title is appropriate). After the first sorting process you then move onto step 2.
Sort the sorted toys! Deal with the donate and trash first, I put all of these in trash bags and use a sharpie to label them. The donate bags immediately go into my car that day. Trust me, I have let donate bags sit by the door for a week or more… so just put them in the car right away. Because, when you know you must go to the grocery store later that day or in the week it forces you to make the drop off, ha! With the toys you are going to store-sort, label, and then put away. Now you have plenty of working room in your playroom/toy area for all the toys you are keeping.
When sorting the toys your kiddos will be currently playing with you have to do it how it will best work for your family. I suggest looking online for inspiration for different ideas depending on the space and number of toys you have. For us, we have a small room that is for the kids and all their toys. Investing in some storage shelving has really made organizing the toys a lot easier. Looking online on used furniture sale sites and going to thrift stores is a great place to look to save some money. We then sorted our toys by toy type: all the dinosaurs, Legos, action figures, costumes, Disney characters, and cars each have their own clear box. We use clear plastic boxes, storage containers and baskets to hold the toys. You could even print labels and attach to the bins to take the organization a step further. Check out your kiddos classroom to see how YSA organizes their toys, labels and pictures in every room. This is so doable at home as well!
The most important! Train your kiddos to put stuff away! Once you have your playroom/toy storage system in place, teach your children how to clean up after themselves. My kids usually only take one or two buckets out and then will clean up and move on. Any more than that, it takes them eons to actually clean up. It should not be your job to clean up their mess every time. It can be a frustrating task a first, but it really pays off once they get the hang of it. My 3-year-old can put everything away on his own now and it is amazing! I don’t have to get on my hands and knees crawling all over the place. It is teaching them so much responsibility! But, be consistent. Every time, they are the ones that put the stuff away, even if a buddy comes over. Make sure you are upfront and explain to friends that they will be responsible for helping too.
About every 2 months, I try to get in there and make sure everything is put away correctly and reorganize where it is needed. The kids are responsible for helping during this also. Taking the time to organize and teach your children how to clean up properly really helps take the stress off the playroom chaos. It teaches responsibility and care of their things. They do this at school, so they should totally be able to do it at home! Here’s to not stepping on tiny Legos in the dark ever again!
Lead Prekindergarten Teacher
The Week of the Young Child Home Extensions
Have you ever heard of The Week of the Young Child? Well, it is a celebration created by NAEYC, our national accredited program, to highlight children; their education and early learning, their families, their community, and their teachers. Each day has a theme where the students will have activities, books, and projects to match that day’s theme. You can participate at home too! Be sure to post on your social media using tags #BeingaKidisFun and #woyc19 and show us how you and your child(ren) celebrate this special week.
April 8th Music Monday:
Music gives many people a way in which express feelings, and why should it be different for children? Give kids a musical outlet, try exploring music with your child by rerecording a song with your own lyrics, listening to a variety of genres from around the world, making and playing instruments, finding patterns in songs (such as patterns in rhythm and lyrics), by enjoying a dance party with your little ones. Young scholars has Spotify playlists that you can access.
April 9th Tasty Tuesday:
Today focuses on healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle. Because young children do not have control over their food today is important to help build healthy habits that will hopefully last a life time. Prepare a healthy meal WITH you child and talk about the healthy foods you are using and how they grow. Want to learn more and check out many kid friendly recipes please check out https://www.choosemyplate.gov/recipes-cookbooks-and-menus . After dinner do some yoga with your child or go on a walk to the park. For some yoga ideas check out Cosmic Yoga on YouTube.
April 10th Work Together Wednesday:
Teamwork helps children to develop early skills needed to succeed in school. When children have an opportunity to make decisions, learn self-control, use their indignation and be spontaneous, it makes their play more meaningful and enjoyable. Work with your little ones to build something new. Try building with blocks to create towns, cars, flying robots and any other structure that came from a spark of imagination. Building a fort using extra sheets and blankets is a fun way to experience a family movie night. Whatever you choose to do, do it together with teamwork.
April 11th Artsy Thursday:
Open ended art projects five children a chance to make choices, get hand on experiences by creating, and use their imagination. Creating art can be as simple as coloring or painting with water colors to harder activities such as tie dye or creating mosaics. Think of an art project, maybe something that can hang in a special place in the house or something that can be used frequently such as a fruit bowl. A fun activity is splatter painting. Put on some clothes that can get dirty, hand a plastic table cloth on the fence, dip a paintbrush in paint and fling it at a canvas. It is something fun to do with the kiddos that will be a beautiful masterpiece when finished.
April 12th Family Friday:
Did you know that family plays a large role in not just a child’s life but their education? As a parent, you are the most important influence on your kiddo and their very first teacher. NAEYC and early childhood educators recognize this and applaud the role of family on learning. Every family has a story, why not create a video of you telling your child your story. As we grow our parent’s stories become a part of our stories. By recording your story, you create a lasting memory that your child can revisit for years. Take it a step further and share your family story time on social media so your extended family can also post and add to your story.
Above are some ideas to celebrate The Week of the Young Child #wyoc19 and #BeingaKidisFun. Please post and share how you celebrated your children this week.
Lead Early Preschool Teacher
Starting preschool is a milestone for a child and a big change for a parent. The first few days before school can be tough. There are some simple and fun ways to make this transition smooth and fun. [Read more…]
As a parent, it is important to focus on your child’s communication skills as they grow up. How they respond to criticisms or compliments, how they interact with other kids and/or adults, and how they behave socially are some ways to know if your child is displaying good communication skills.
Most children follow by example, from peers, adults, or what they see online. With all the technological advancements nowadays, it is normal that your child will adopt communication skills from this platform. Social skills need to be developed with some parental help.
3 Major Communication Skills to Teach your Child
When your child is growing up, making friends is important. And what better way to develop friendship than being a good communicator.
It is no surprise that people like to talk about themselves. Start at home by asking questions. Touch base with your child every now and then. Gather information about what they like to do during their free time, who their friends in school are, or what they want to be when they grow up. You may also consult with them if there will be changes at home.
Practicing questioning at home will make your child become more engaged. Not only does talking about themselves help them express themselves freely; it also makes them feel better. Once this habit is formed at home, it will be easier for your child to use this outside. They will be able to openly ask questions of their peers.
Sharing knowledge is another way to enhance the communication skills of your child.
When your child learns to share and observe how others share their ideas, their communication skills will become better. Let them share with you what they did in school today, how was baseball practice, or what they think of the new sofa bed.
Observe how they respond and their tone of words. Listen to their word choices. Inform them how they communicate will attract friends or drive them away. How your child shares information will pave the way to make friends.
Reaching out does not only refer to helping. It also means to extend an invitation to someone, and is not limited to birthday parties. When your child is able to invite and talk to someone without being pressured to, their communication skills are enhanced.
Your child will get invited to many events, thus it is also important to return the favor. Make sure that your child is also aware of how to respond when they get declined.
Importance of Good Communication Skills
There are many skills that a child needs in order for them to become more socially capable. A child’s capacity to communicate effectively in any given situation is an important skill. And as we all know, the better we are at communicating and interacting, our quality of life gets better too.
We begin to communicate the moment we were born – by letting out that cry. As a child grows up, their first contact is through their parents. Being a parent, your role in nourishing your child’s communication skills is essential. Expressing themselves freely and with confidence will help them in all aspects of life. The more you interact with your child, the more you can help them enhance their skills.
Tips for Parents to Help Improve their Child’s Communication Skills
Parents play a crucial role in every child’s development. Here are a couple of communication tips for parents:
Be there for your child
Have a casual conversation with your child. This can be done during dinner or on your way home from picking them up. Let them know you care about what is happening with them. Find time to be with them – have a one-on-one activity.
Let your child know you are listening
When your child shares something – be it a bad thing that happened in school or a concern they have – give them your full attention. Listen to what they have to say without asking too many questions. Acknowledge and respect their opinions. Let your child speak their mind. Make sure to let them know that you understand everything they said before giving out your opinion.
Parenting is tough. Talking and listening to your child creates a healthy connection between you and them. Remember to always ask your child what they need from you. Focus on your child’s needs. Encourage them to speak. Motivate and respond to what they have to say without appearing defensive or angry.
Communication skills can be developed with practice and everything always starts at home. By being there for your child and helping them develop these skills at an early stage, you are ensuring them a better future ahead.
Sending your child to the right preschool will also help develop the necessary skills to achieve success in the future. If you’re looking for the best school for them, please don’t hesitate to contact Young Scholars Academy.