Spring 2020

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The spring of 2020 was probably the most uncertain time of all of our lives. I felt like I was waiting for something but didn’t know what I was waiting for nor when it was going to get here. It was an eerie feeling.

Kind of like that feeling before a snow storm. Although the spring of 2020 gave us so much to consider, I noticed it was a breathtakingly beautiful spring. The most beautiful spring I can remember. Unfortunately, our springs in this area have been reduced to a couple of weeks at best. This spring the colors were vibrant and vivid. The blooms were heavy, long lasting and big. The pear trees didn’t shed nearly as quickly as they usually do.

The sky was even bluer. We had a LOT of rain and unseasonably cool temperatures. This resulted in a technicolor spring. There are so many lilac bushes in Miss Amy’s neighborhood I could smell them every time we went outside. The tulips, daffodils, dogwood, red-buds all the early bloomers, really showed off. It gave me some comfort.

Getting to know the upstairs children took me out of my comfort zone and kept me on my toes as they are not easily impressed. We turned everything into a project. How many buckets does it take to return the sand to the playground from the dump buckets? The answer was 87.

We documented new birds that came to the feeders we made.

Mr. Peanuts, our squirrel, does indeed like peanuts although it took him 11 days to find them. Mr. and Mrs. Mallard were very social, they made some duck friends and they all slept in the puddles outside.

We learned the Hand Jive – Bob Bop Clap Clap Side to Side. Everyone is very coordinated except for me. I made Bananas Foster French Toast with whipped cream. It was delicious! Now we are all back where we are more accustomed to being. It feels like home. We planted some impatiens but they failed to come up. We planted basil instead. We also turned grass seed, selfies, and plastic cups into a “Chia Pet”. We continued our seasonal tree art collaboration that was inspired by a project from a few years ago.

Seasonal Tree

Until next time,

Ms. Micha

‘Twas The Month Before Christmas Break

‘Twas the month before Christmas break & all through the center

All the teachers were scurrying & the children a ‘twitter

The artwork was hung on the walls with great care

In hopes that the parents soon would be there

The children were drawing & painting on easels

Dancing, singing using glue and glitter

Then settling down for circle & lunch

Then off to find their cots for a short winter’s rest

While visions of Amazon Wish Lists danced in their heads

Singing about the “Lil one” that rolled out of bed

With Miss Amy in her office & Tilly in her pen

Let the end of the year festivities begin

With Christmas break in all of our sights

The Teachers all elated danced in delight

Because the journals were all dated

The weekly count down was about to start

The days they did pass just like an abacus on an advent calendar

Sometimes slowly & sometimes much faster

With cheers of joy and ruckus laughter

With clay, felt, loose parts, and a few noodles

We finished on our artwork and some very good doodles

With cotton ball snowmen

Pipe cleaner reindeer

One with a red nose

One with a crooked antler

When outside there arose such a clatter

We all sprang from our posts to see what was the matter

Away to the artier windows, we flew

Oh, don’t children forget to put on your shoes

The sun glistening down on the sandbox below

Gave the illusion of a dream-like trance to the objects below

When what to our gazing eyes did appear

What? It’s early! Ate the parents really here!?!

Minivans, SUV’s, and some compact cars

Thank our lucky stars!

The parents! The Parents! ALL OF THEM ~ They are HERE!

Come along children, come along children

Come one and come all

To the top of the sign out sheets, the names began to disappear

On their way out the door, we collected our gear

Hand in hand they crossed the crowded parking lot

Safely into the car seat was each tiny tot

Inside the center, the eerie silence was broken

With a roar & a cheer

Woo Hoo! Woo Hoo!

Christmas break is finally here!

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The staff all professional knew exactly what to do

Quickly to work we flew

Brainstorming plans for 2020

Jobs for everyone? Oh, yes, there’s plenty

We rotated materials exchanging this for that

Oh, look! New blocks, a ball, & a bat

Dolls galore & even a new hat

We put out new puppets, new paint, new glitter, new train tracks, different puzzles, new markers, & glue

Oh, Look! We found a lost shoe!

We vacuumed & cleaned up a slew

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We sprayed Lysol & bleach & every kind of cleaner

The teachers went to work with the kindest demeanor

As we stood back admiring our good work

Miss Amy so kindly and eloquently spoke

“Next year will be fun & full of surprises.

I can’t wait to see what’s beyond the horizon!

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Then with her head just slightly a’ tilt

Miss Amy said “I’m so proud of this community we’ve built.

I’m thankful for each child, each Mom, & each Dad.

Happy Christmas to all & to all a good night”!

The End

So, I got up early this morning and drank a lot of coffee. The caffeine boost inspired me to spin our version of ‘Twas The Month Before Christmas Break from the eyes of a pre-school teacher. I hope everyone gets a least a small chuckle at my festive attempt to be witty. Looking back, I have to say we have had an amazing Autumn.

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Thank you so much for your interest and enthusiasm concerning the Steampunk Fall Birthday Party. It certainly was not a cookie-cutter theme. I like to think that’s a reflection of our program here at Miss Amy’s. We are not a one size fits all generic program. It certainly is important to me to treat each child as an individual and with love, kindness, and respect.

With Love ~ Miss Micha

Change

As with anything in life, change is inevitable.  Major changes began in the fall of 2017 for our little school.  For many years now we have had the same staff, fitting comfortably together like a well-worn puzzle.  Our days were filled with ideas and conversations that we had discussed as a collective group of early childhood educators over and over again.  Always finding something new in our old ideas.  We were comfortable, like a family.  Then the inevitable happened.  A lead teacher, dear to our hearts, moved away.  This seemed to set in motion a flurry of change that felt at the time more like a hurricane!  We also said goodbye to 2 devoted young ladies who had worked with us, aiding and substituting since they were teenagers, young ladies who had been raised by early childhood educator mothers, who taught them well.  They both moved on to pursue their own young lives.  This too was not easy.  Even though I want the best for both of them as if they were my own. The new task at hand was a daunting one, of job postings, interviews and decisions.

As the weeks progressed, it was easy to see that the replacement for our lead teacher fit nicely in with our current staff and families, bringing with her new ideas and conversations.  It took a few tries to find new young ladies to work aiding classroom teachers, young ladies who understood what we were trying to accomplish with the children.  As with most early childhood programs, I am sure this is a struggle.  We are located in a more rural area, and so we are challenged to find those who are “just right” for us.  I have found over the years that the children themselves are the best indicator as to which support staff will work out or not.  Children have a special sense when it comes to these things.

As the calendar moved forward into the fall of the year, it seemed that our lead teacher replacement was working out nicely. She fit in with our other teachers.  The children and families really had adjusted well to our new staff and the changes happening all around.   Even though things felt different, there was an air of newness and excitement in the classrooms.

I have been reflecting during the holiday break, over the changes of the past several months, giving thought to our style of teaching, emergent, a project-based approach, and have realized that since we teach our children to problem solve, to love learning, to try new things and welcome everyone who enters our school that the children did not seem troubled by the changes happening around them, and that possibly this ease with which the children approached each day, taught us to relax and accept the changes before us.  To find joy in each day, and to share that joy with our friends, classmates as well as co-workers.  So as we enter into 2018, I hope that each of you can embrace the potential that all change has to bring us new experiences and new learning.  Happy New Year!

Miss Amy