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Monthly

News Bulletin May 2014

Four Components of the

Healthy Lifestyles Curriculum

Bridgeport Child Development Center II • A program of One Hope United 514 W. 31st Street, Chicago, IL 60616 • 312.949.4015

Overall Health • Exercise • Nutrition • Environmental Sustainability

Things to Do While You’re Waiting: Physical Activities It’s happening again! You’re running errands with your children and suddenly you’re stuck—in traffic, at the clinic, in the checkout line. Many parents find that playful learning activities can help keep children engaged when they have to wait. Too much time in a car seat or stroller can make a child irritable. How can you help your child find a little freedom of movement in a confined space? Snuggle Up! Sometimes, hugging is the best physical activity. Invite your child to pretend you are puppies or other animals as you give each other lots of hugs. Time to Play! “Simon Says” and “Mother May I?” are timeless games that let children move in a small space. Fingerplays, clapping games, and songs get hands moving. Try old favorites like “Patty-cake,” “Miss Mary Mack,” or “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes.” Let’s Pretend! If your child still has energy to burn, try some of these activities: • Flop your bodies like rag dolls. Then be stiff like robots. Stretch your necks like

giraffes, or be shy turtles pulling heads and limbs in toward your bodies. Pretend to dig holes or pour cereal. With very young children, decide together what to act out, then find different ways to do it. As your child learns the game, she can play a part while you guess what she is doing. Then switch roles. • Be athletes in the Finger Olympics. Use hands and fingers to show skiing, skating, pole-vaulting, or other sports. • Play the mirror game. This activity works when you can face each other. When your child is the leader, he can make any kind of motion suitable for the space— arm movements, funny faces, silly walks. Imitate his movements as if you were a mirror image. Trade places often! Challenge Time! Make up physical challenges for each other. Be sure your challenges fit the space and don’t interfere with anyone else. For example: “Try standing on one foot while I count to 10.” “Can you touch your nose with your elbow?” “Can you lift the cereal box over your head 10 times?” “Which letters can we make with our fingers?”

Source: http://illinoisearlylearning.org/tipsheets/physicalactivities.htm

Your trusted partner In early care and education


From the Director’s Desk – Karina Dixon We would like to wish all moms a very Happy Mother’s Day. We know that being a mom is not always easy and we truly appreciate all that you do. Last month was full of activities. We paraded around the neighborhood in celebration of NAEYC’s Week of the Young Child. Parents joined in the fun by reading to children in the classrooms. Students and staff supported GO BLUE for OHU by making posters, wearing blue and blowing bubbles outside for child abuse prevention month. We planted seeds of growth at our spring open house. Parents and children took pleasure in decorating their own pots, helping themselves to a few healthy snack options and planting seeds soon to grow. Children especially enjoyed getting their faces painted by Ms. Fae, and one lucky parent was all smiles as she walked away with a lovely basket of children’s books. Our School Age students were actively engaged in a fun-filled week of spring break fun. In addition to all of the exciting activities that have taken place, we have also welcomed some new changes within our site. Ms. Ling has moved into a new role as family support specialist at Bridgeport I. Ms. Yan has moved into the assistant teacher role in Room 1, and we have welcomed a new team member, Ms. Sonya Wu who is the assistant teacher in Room 3. Ms. Sonya is currently pursuing her associate’s degrees at Harold Washington College with a certificate in Child Development Preschool. She speaks English, Cantonese and Mandarin. Ms. Sonya also has some tutoring and assistant teaching experience and is passionate about working with young children. Please join us in welcoming Ms. Sonya to our team.

News from Our Classrooms: Room 1 The weather has finally begun to warm up, and Room 1 is taking full advantage of these opportunities for learning about our outside world. Students have developed fine motor skills, memory retention and perseverance through tasks, such as folding their own paper airplanes. Now, we are exploring the scientific method for testing the airplanes and seeing how far they can travel outside. Students are learning about the different variables to consider, such as wind and temperature. Additionally, we are wrapping up the recycling study. Students took a great deal of interest in the concept of repurposing materials instead of throwing them away. For example, the boxes that were used to hold reams of paper or new classroom materials can be repurposed into something else, instead of being thrown into the recycling bin. Students decided to make a racecar that everyone in the class took turns maintaining with regular repairs, such as replacing tires, washing the car and checking the engine. We have been working to build new vocabulary to describe opposites, such as fortunately versus unfortunately, and to aid in this we have read the book Fortunately by Remy Charlip. Students became familiar with the character Ted and have engaged in meaningful conversations about perseverance and problem solving despite how hard a challenge seems to be. Room 2 Room 2 is very excited spring has arrived. We are able to get outside and develop our large muscle skills while playing at the park. This past month, we have been learning about gardens, flowers, vegetables and the different insects that live in a garden. We discussed the life cycle of plants and flowers while learning new vocabulary words such as, soil, stem, sprout and petal. We discussed what plants need in order to survive. Children had the opportunity to plant flower and bean seeds. They enjoyed watching their seeds grow while making observations on the changes they noticed. Children learned that vegetables grow in the ground. We discussed the different parts of the vegetable plants we eat (root=carrot, stem=celery, leaf=lettuce, flower=broccoli). Children tasted cooked and raw carrots and graphed which one they liked the best. Our class also observed real earthworms and learned about how they are helpful to the earth. Children practiced measuring


the length of the worms, observed how worms move in darkness compared to light, and learned about the different parts of a worm. We also learned about the lifecycle of a butterfly and had the opportunity to observe caterpillars as they go through the lifecycle changes. Children are so excited and cannot wait until the caterpillars turn into butterflies! We hope you have had a moment to come see our caterpillars as they change. Just a friendly reminder: Morning lessons, one-on-one time and key academic activities take place as early as 9:30 a.m. It is very important for your child to be present at this time to take full advantage of all our program has to offer. Room 3 As we are continuing to discover the season of spring, we have learned that a seed needs water, soil (dirt) and the sun to grow. We experimented by putting a seed into a bag with water and paper towel and hung it up on a board in the classroom to watch it grow. When the sprout grew too big for the bag, we planted it in a seed starter pot and waited for the temperature outside to get warm enough for the seed to be planted in our garden. We prepared the soil by taking shovels and turning the dirt over. As we turned the dirt, we found spiders of different sizes as well as worms. Once the soil was prepared, we planted the sprout in our garden. By participating in this process, students became aware of the different parts of a plant including the seed, roots, stem and leaves. We want to thank all the parents who participated in our open house. By helping your child plant seeds you have helped them develop a positive self-concept as well as improve their fine motor, listening and linguistic skills. School Age School Age students are enjoying the first sights, sounds, smells and tastes of spring—as well as finally feeling the touch of warm air and sunshine! Over spring break, both rooms were busy brightening their rooms with creative arts and crafts. Room 201 recently integrated some in-school STEM learning with our after-school food project. Students who had learning about cells in-school shared their knowledge with others in our After School Program. After learning from peers, all students participated in a small group STEM project. We made a light colored gelatin solution (Jell-O), then added various candies such as, Lemonheads, Whoppers, Twizzlers and Fruit-By-The-Foot to represent the cell parts of mitochondria, nucleus, cytoplasm and ribosomes. Students later enjoyed eating their creations. Students also created poster boards for

our summer program to be displayed in the classroom during our spring open house. During spring break, students were busy studying Angry Birds math and physics projects and listening to a radio drama presentation version of a group story entitled, The Magicians Nephew. Students in Room 202 are excited about the recent warm-up. We have been able to get outside and play in the park. As the warmer weather remains, we will continue to spend time outdoors and ask that you please make sure that your child is wearing closed-toed shoes. In addition to spending time outdoors we have been enjoying time indoors. We learned all about construction and students built their very own bridge and ramp. Students also participated in some super cool art projects including using shaving cream and paint to make designs reflecting spring and creating truffula tree drawings. Students read The Lorax by Dr. Seuss and discussed why it is important for them to stand up for what they believe in and which characteristics are exhibited by a good citizen. The students loved making homemade sugar-free gummy candies and parents receive their very own gummy candy recipe to try at home.

Everyday Mathematics: Mathematics Outdoors Explore mathematics together with your child when you are at the playground, in your yard, taking a walk, or playing sports. You can measure, count, compare, find and create patterns and more. Out and About You can find numbers in many places. Look for numbers while taking a walk around the neighborhood. Addresses, license plates, price tags, billboards with phone numbers, and signs with speed limits are just a few places to find numbers around you. Try moving in a pattern while on your walk. For instance, big step, little step; big step, little step; big step, little step…; or hop, hop, run; hop, hop, run; hop, hop, run… Fun with Measures Throw a ball as far as you can. Use a stick to mark where the ball landed. Now throw it again, and mark the spot. Which throw was longer? Which was shorter?

Can you think of a way to measure the length of the throw, such as using steps, a string or a tape measure? You can also compare and measure long jumps. Playground Math Look for shapes on the playground. Can you see a triangle shape when you look at the slide from the side? What shapes do you see in the slide ladder? What other shapes can you find? Use measure and/or comparison words to describe how tall the jungle gym is, how long the slide is and so on. For example: “The jungle gym is taller than Daddy.” “The slide is as long as this jump rope.” Push an empty swing. Count how many times it moves back and forth before it becomes still. Use numbers and counts as you play hopscotch and sing jump-rope rhymes.


Monthly

Calendar May 2014 Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11 Happy Mother’s Day!

12

13

14

15

16

17

18

19

20 Parent Meeting 4:30–6 p.m.

21

22

23

24

25

26 Memorial Day: Center closed

27

28

29

30

31

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Bridgeport Child Development Center II May 2014 Newsletter