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Monday, March 30th from the Team:

Hope:

So during naptime, there’s this one little one who loves to come over and stand with me, as I’m trying to finish up some of my work for the day.  He says "Hopey, Do you have time to have a naptime chat today?"  So on this particular day, he had said to me "Remember how my Grampy is sick in the hospital?" and I said "Yes I do.   Your Grampy is getting better every day." He then says "Well I’m not feeling well today." So I asked him what was going on -- he had said to me that his blood isn’t working right; I then looked at him and said "Your blood isn’t working right? What do you mean?" he says "Well that’s why my Grampy is in the hospital."  So I asked "What can I do for you?" he responds "Maybe you can take my temperature.  Do I feel warm to you." I took his temperature and I showed him the thermoscan and explain to him that he did not have a temperature. He then went back onto his bed and was sitting there quietly for a few minutes and came back over to me and said "OK Hopey, I think my blood is working backwards," and I looked at him and said "Your blood is working backwards? What do you mean?" and that is when he said “Remember, that’s why my Grampy is in the hospital.” He then took his hands and was showing me how Grampy’s blood was going through his body and took his other hand and showed me how the blood should be going through the body (so he actually showed me two different directions). I then said to him “You just need to remember that Grampy is getting better every day that he’s in the hospital.” Then he told me that he only had so many sleeps until his Grampy was able to come home.  It is such a privilege and honour that children share their lives with us as well as families.  It is also so important to remember that children are ALWAYS thinking and dealing with all aspects of life that they are a part of AS WELL AS what goes on around them.

Fatema:

A favourite!!!!!   Spice Sensory activity:  on the table we set out some pots, cups, wooden hammers and spices (cinnamon sticks, cloves, star anise) .The children begin to fill the cups withs spices. Some use their hands to fill the cups;  others use the cups to fill up the pots.  Children hold the hammers and then smash / bang at the spices. A couple of the children used both hands to smash the spices with the hammers very hard and they look at each other and laugh uproariously.  This activity is a truly wondrous one as it is so rich in experiential learning:   the smells fill the room, there is much discussion and language development as the children discuss what is happening and how it smells, it takes quite a bit of finesse to coordinate the way to hold the hammer and position the spices and so much more…. and do you know what else????   It is so much fun! (please note these are not adult hammers).

Sandra

I miss having the children out on our back “baby” deck playing and seeing either toddlers or preschoolers on the other side of the deck. The children come to the “baby” deck to chat with teachers or the babies. The preschoolers will ask questions about the babies or they will look for a sibling of one of their classmates and then try to get their attention and smile and say hi to them. Some will even just touch the babies fingers through the fence of the gate.  The rich relationships that have developed this way is such a treat to witness and the inquiring nature of the older children about the babies is always great to participate in fulfilling.

Rita

It’s so amazing to see friendships at this young age amongst our children in the classroom! We have many children who have special friendships with one another, and little groups that they have naturally fallen into. This is also amazing when there is a child who has no English language skills and they get by with the physical actions and leadership of children within the group that they are in. Some children have bonds based upon their interest in the same activities such as doll playing, dinkies, magnets or blocks. It’s awesome to see that a tangible material can aid in the social aspect of the children’s growth; bonding over something in common just as we do in the adult world! These circles or pairs of friendships are really special to see when they interact with each other, asking about each other when one is not present, and the excitement they get when they see them arrive during the day. There are some children who prefer to work alone and this is also interesting to see as their play is very focused and particular to their likes and needs. I sooooooooo miss seeing these interactions everyday.

Bev

In our classroom,  we sometimes set out a mixture of ribbons, measuring cups, musical instruments , napkin rings in a basket and / or  a container. It is heuristic  play . This allows the children to explore real authentic objects. It enables  the children to relax and they can make their own choices about what they want to engage with. The children can explore at their own pace.  I love watching the babies explore with the different materials.

Angela

The children really enjoy dancing in Bounce Room, and I am sure in every classroom. A great idea is to turn off the lights,  get some flashlights , or some holiday lights and put on some music that the children enjoy and have a dance party. The children can hold the flashlights and move them around, get as crazy as you want, you can get some stuffed animals to join in your dance party. I love dancing with the children in my room, it is a great movement activity and the shadow and light play leads to lots of questions, discussion and exclamations of delight!

Faith

I wanted to touch on a subject that we hear often from parents at daycare. Many parents come in during a meal time or notice the meals in the emailed daily reports and comment “how do you get them to eat this here???!” referring to a food their child won’t eat at home. There are a few factors that contribute to a child’s decision to try new foods.

  1. Eating as a family. At daycare we all sit together family style, they see others eating the same foods and enjoying them.
  2. We as the educators carry out positive conversations about the food on the table.
  3. We need to offer the food more times than a few. Once the children have been introduced to a new food option multiple times they often choose to give it a try.
  4. If a child knows another option will be provided in place of a food they don’t want, they are less likely to try it the second time it’s offered and simply ask for the alternative food they know they like.
  5. Children also need lots of time to finish meals. Sometimes they will sit for 15 minutes not eating anything then as most of the children are finishing they just made the decision to begin eating.

Don’t give up, keep offering them these foods! I hope this helps.

Brianna

I prepared a video of myself reading a story called Scaredy Squirrel and I hope that the children and families really enjoy it!!!

 Tiffany

A group of children in Vivacity room are always holding cars. They would race them around on chairs and pretend that their cars are doing big flips and jumps in the air. Sometimes the children would move to a table and have an even bigger group racing around the table yelling out "stop", "faster", "red light" and so on. Adding some tape to the table top as a racetrack is a great way for the children to use their imaginations and burn off some energy. You could put the tape down and ask them were they think it should go or give then the option of doing it themselves. You could add cardboard tubes as ramps or tunnels and anything else you have around the house. Cardboard boxes are great for drive-through car washes or as garages.  While I miss your children,  I am imagining them having some wonderful car play at home!  Maybe you can comment and tell us about it!

Bella

Hi all!  I made a video for the children and families’ enjoyment of singing and playing the ukulele:  The song:   How Far I’ll Go.  enjoy!

Kelsey

Hi guys, Kelsey from Tangible. Today I will share a video of me singing Bingo for the babies! Enjoy and take care.

 Domanique

Plastic wrap, also known as cling wrap: —-  Did you know you can paint on it? At KIDS R KIDS, we love to paint on plastic wrap. We flip over one of our tables and place the plastic wrap on the legs of the table then put it on the other leg and keep going around and around until it’s fairly tight. Parents can use dining chairs or your dining table to do this activity. We add paint to a tray and paint brushes. The children like to sit inside the table, select a paint brush then add paint to the brush then they start marking strokes on the plastic wrap. One of the children during this activity was mixing red and blue, the child then said “wow, it made purple” then continued mixing. Another child just made dots on the plastic wrap while others did circles. This is a fun and easy activity with a pretty quick clean up; great on a rainy day.

Melissa

Nap Time:  One of the things I miss is nap time.  Just being able to sit with the kids and have a snuggle and then rub their backs as they go off to sleep. I have a favourite song that the children all enjoy and most of them know all the words to it and you can often catch it on repeat in our room and it’s called “Let them be Little" by Billy Dean; the children are often singing the song and dancing a little as they settle in and I always sing it to them when it first comes on.

Kim

One morning, while the children are getting ready to go outside, a few younger children ran to where their outerwear was on the floor. A few children sat on the floor, taking off their shoes, some of them were putting on their socks with difficultly. They looked at the teachers, pointing at their socks being on. The children picked up their snowpants and started to try and put them on. Some of the children got it, jump up and down showing the teachers that they had it done. Some children had both legs in one leg of the snowpant..   with help from the teachers the children were able to get them on by themselves. This act of dressing and undressing is such a big part of our day and while it can become a smidge tedious, it is also a big deal to see and feel their successes as they acquire the skills.  : )

Karin

Using colored rice in a sensory bin is something the children really enjoy and can keep their attention for a long time.

To make colored rice you will need

- 1 cup white rice (uncooked)

- 1 teaspoon vinegar

-  Food coloring

- Ziploc bag to mix it in

- Larger plastic container to use as the bin

Place the rice in the Ziploc bag. Add food coloring and vinegar, close the bag and mix until the rice is evenly colored. Place an old towel or paper towel in the bin and spread the rice out to dry. This usually takes several hours.

When the rice is dry put it in the bin. You can add almost anything for the children to use such as kitchen utensils, paper towel tubes, cups, funnels, colanders, or cars and trucks. The children could also use their fingers to draw in the rice. This activity encourages hand-eye coordination, fine and gross motor skills and pre-writing skills just to name a few.  It is definitely a hit with the kids!!!!

Kitchen Heather:

Hi everyone!  I would just like to say your children love the wow butter with veggies, rice cakes and ww crackers. You can buy the wow butter in the special section where you buy rice milk etc.  It looks very much like peanut butter but it is peanut free!!!!   You may well enjoy it yourself as an alternative : )

Patricia, Our Inclusion Coordinator’s post for March 31st

Challenging behaviours.:

 A challenging behaviour is any behaviour that is disturbing to you and that is something you wish to stop. We all have different thresholds and tolerance levels and react differently to different behaviours.

What we need to do is: 

-Learn to recognize the situations that upset you the most. 

-Talk to another adult especially anyone engaging with your child. 

-Ensure that the adults in the child's life are all on the same page; in other words, intervening and reacting in the same manner.

-Strive to increase ways of preventing and intervening those upsetting situations. 

In becoming more comfortable with challenging and disruptive behaviours we will need to first stop finding blame as to why these behaviours happen such as "We must be doing something wrong", or "He has not eaten yet, so no wonder!" Just treat the behaviours. 

-Always look at where he is now and where he was when you started, that is reason to celebrate. It cannot be an expectation that the behaviour will all go away at once. It is more important to lessen the behaviour and count that as a success. 

-Try not to have the expectation that this will never happen again or he is fixed for good. Accept that sometimes behaviours return and then we need to return to the action we took that got rid of it in the first place. The reduction of this behavior will happen more quickly this time, if you are consistent with your strategies.

Always be ready to change your plan if it is not working, it may just need a modification.