"Busy, busy, busy!"

In the words of Professor Hinkle, we have been, BUSY BUSY BUSY here at the House. The Toddler classrooms have been set up like Santa’s workshop and they have been the little elves creating what will be the most wonderful Christmas Around the World Art Show, and it’s just a week a way! The Preschool classrooms have been putting their vocals to the test, as they continue to practice for their big show on the stage in 12 days.

It really is the most wonderful time of year! And we are all excited to give you all a whole lot of Christmas cheer!

But for now….let’s take a look at what happens when we let it snow!

The Preschoolers brought Frosty to life! “Happy Birthday!”

And the Toddler squad went on an adventure following the footprints of an small intruder that scurried across their yard.

After playing in the snow, it was back into the classroom they go…Holiday Fun was had throughout the House.

A sneak peak into the Toddler prep for the Art Show…that is all you will see until the doors open at 3:00! (….next week).

The oldest of the House worked on their pincer-grasp as they shared their wish list for Santa.

Short and sweet this week but the snow is falling and we want to get back outside to play, and so we hope you have a happy Friday! And a wonderful weekend too!

The Chartwell House.

"It's the most wonderful time of the year…"

This week at the House, we had Mr. McCoy put us to work with an obstacle course during Karate, Little Ray’s shared their facts with us as they introduced a few furry friends, Ms. J danced our sillies out and then calmed us right down with some solid meditation and Madame S tested us on our Francais matching skills.

When the rain is coming down, and keeping us indoors…we make Gingerbread men. The toddlers put their whole self into this creative…

Grass! A river! Uh oh! Mud! A forest! Uh oh! A snowstorm! A cave! The Preschooler’s favourite story came to life, as they went on a bear hunt.

The importance of patterning in Preschool: it helps children make predictions based on their observations, an important math skill. Understanding patterns can help prepare children for learning complex number concepts, and mathematical operations.

Letter recognition: the ability to visually recognize letters of the alphabet through hands-on learning.

And because we are so close to the holiday season…we painted some “O Christmas Trees…look at those fine motor skills, and concentration and all it took was a pinecone and paint.

Speaking of concentration, it is Friday afternoon and I have lost mine and so I will end things here and say, have a wonderful weekend everybody!

Dear Secret Santa…

We have a lot to discuss. But first….let’s show the people what they want.

The House was rockin’ this week, with both Suzie and Ms. Amy visiting.

Music and Dance not only brings the fun to the house, but they bring a lot of benefits too! Music encourages and engages the brain as the children learn new sounds, words and patterns through music. Dance allows the children to control their bodies and movement. Both can cultivate communication skills, bringing the children together to sing, rhyme, and learn new actions to interact with other children. Music and Dance gives an opportunity for self-expression and encourages creativity. Physical skill will be worked on during dance, helping children build their coordination, balance, and control. Both will also open up the children’s imagination and creativity sides. So sing and dance like no one is watching!

Funkey Kids made a stop at the house too, continuing to help the children work on their coordination, balance, and control. All that built-up stored energy…gone!

Fine motor skills are achieved when children learn to use their smaller muscles, like muscles in the hands, fingers, and wrists. Children use their fine motor skills when writing, holding small items, buttoning clothing, turning pages, eating, cutting with scissors and using computer keyboards. Mastery of fine motor skills requires precision and coordination

Schemas are patterns of repeatable behaviour the children use to test out ideas and to make sense of the world around them. The positioning schema in play: ordering and arranging objects sometimes in very obsessive manners. They sometimes line them up in order of size, colour or shape or texture too.

There is said to be at least 6 stages of writing development: drawing (scribble pictures), random scribbling but the children tend to name their scribble, letter-like forms where the children will use unconventional letter forms and familiar symbols such as circles, but still give meaning to their writing, random letters is when the children will use letter shapes to convey meaning, and then there is the patterned letter stage where children begin to string letters together, sometimes having their name appear.

And just before we head off into the weekend…let’s talk about Ms. S’ Mother Goose program this week, where she brings those old nursery rhymes to life using a little Mother Goose herself, who the children watch wide-eyed as she sings the classics.

Okay Secret Santa…I hope you are still reading because the following is a short list for you to check twice:

  • unlimited coffee
  • half day Fridays
  • and Peace on Earth

Happy Friday!

The Chartwell House.

Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum

There is just nothing better than a fresh coat of snow when you’re a child.

There’s just something about this time of year.

That brings just a little bit more cheer.

This time of year can also make you think a little bit more about those around you, those you hold close, those who you may call a friend. Friendship for the little one’s is a vital part of growing up and an essential part of their social and emotional development. Building friendships at this age could mean playing side by side with one another without the need to communicate, it could mean having your own language, asking where someone is because they notice they are not in school today, or it could mean waiting by the door for someone and as soon as they enter, a huge smile takes over both of their faces.

Friendship is not being able to contain yourself when your best mate does something so silly, all you can do is laugh. But what can be contained…well that’s just one area that the Preschool class explored. Containment. There are a few important schema’s that children will experience. Schema’s are about repeated patterns of behaviour and one of these patterns is the containment schema. Which is simply, putting one object inside of another and having an understanding of volume and capacity.

“Red and yellow, and pink and green. Purple, and orange and blue.” Colour recognition was happening in Toddler Two.

Learning the colours of the rainbow is a basic foundation for children 18 months up to 3 years of age, learning the colours help children build their vocabulary, they start to understand sorting and classifying, and they learn that different colours may refer to health and safety, like stopping at a red light, or that green means go.

Monday – Suzie Sunshine
Wednesday – Movin’ & Groovin’ & Karate
Thursday – Yoga
Friday – French

That is a wrap on last week, and we are live on this week, and will be back on Friday to show you just what we got up to for the rest of the week.

Happy Monday!

The Chartwell House.

The first snow fall is always magical!

“Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.”

As the snow was falling, the children were laughing, as they believe Christmas time is here!

Although Christmas is still a few weeks away, the smell of snow is in the air, and for a select few those Christmas carols are already playing bringing that holiday cheer.

With the temperatures getting closer and closer to freezing, the prep for outside gets longer and longer. “First the snow pants, then your boots. Then your jacket, and your hat. So that you can zip your zipper, put those gloves on very last.” Yes, it may be chilly, but like Elsa, the cold doesn’t bother us anyway.

Although the giant snowflakes falling were much to our delight, we returned to the indoors where the learning came to light.

Like, magnet play. A simple science activity that allows for the children to explore just how a magnet works. They can feel the forces, push against them, build with the magnets, and learn all about how opposites attract.

Letter and shape recognition, writing skills, sensory play, art and more, all happen behind the closed door…

And when you need a break from the books, it’s good to get that built up energy out, and we’d like to thank Funkey Kids, Once Upon a Mat, and Kindermusik who let us do just that…

It may not be Friday yet, but it’s just over there…so close!

Signing off…
The Chartwell House.

54 Days till Christmas

Before the snow starts to fall, the carols play in the mall, and the temperatures drop freezing us all…let’s take one last look at the nightmare before Christmas…..let’s take a look at Halloween week at The House.

The Toddlers continued working their fine-motor skills, and hand-eye coordination when creating art, and participating in sensory play.

Both Preschool classrooms took a closer look at the bones of the body. and studying dem bones.

The leg bone’s connected to the knee bone,
The knee bone’s connected to the thigh bone
…”

Without even realizing it, the Preschool programs were working on their number recognition, counting, and letter recognition too.

The best part of being a kid is using your imagination when given the materials to do so. “Small World Play” let’s you do just that. Small world play refers to imaginative play with small toys, encouraging children to use their imaginations and create both every day and fantasy worlds in familiar surroundings. It involves processes including active learning and imitation, and allows children to communicate knowledge about life and the world around them in a safe, contained environment.

Outside of the programming, we had Suzie Sunshine, Karate and French Friday this week!

Before we head into the weekend, may I have a drum roll….because the winner of the 2019 Chartwell Pumpkin Contest is…..

Congratulations to the Senior Preschool classroom, and their Cat in the Hat winning pumpkin! To all the other contestants, well done! The pumpkins this year were very impressive. And thank you to all of you who voted!

Have a wonderful weekend!

The Chartwell House.

T’was the week before Halloween…

And all through the House all the creatures were stirring, including a SNAKE!

Along with the Animals visiting, we had Funkey Kids, and Kindermusik in the House too!

Ms. S also introduced our Mother Goose Program to the Toddler classrooms, where she brings five little ones at a time into a quiet space to sing and learn those old classic nursery rhymes. From Jack and Jill to Hickory Dickory Dock to Little Jack Horner Ms. S is bring back the all-time favourites! And she is not alone, Mother Goose herself makes an appearance singing and saying the rhymes as the children stare on.

Along with play, Art too is an important role in a child’s development. Children have a desire to create, and art is a means of self-expression, it is a way for a child to show their feelings and express their emotions. And the best way we, as educators, can provide this need for children is to provide more than enough open-ended materials for the children to create on their own.

Open-ended art allows for the child to make independent choices on what materials to use, and let’s them decide on the final product. What looks like messy art, is actually the child learning initiative, problem-solving, taking risks by showing off their originality, and expressing their self through representation.

Children learn in many different ways, and their senses play a big part on how they learn and explore. Sensory play has many benefits, such as supporting language development, cognitive growth, motor skills, problem solving skills, and social interaction. It can help in developing and enhancing memory function, it can provide a calming experience for anxious children, and can help them learn important sensory attributes like, hot cold, sticky, and dry.

The best thing about play is the children are learning without even realizing they are! When putting together a puzzle they may find it fun to connect the pieces, but they are also matching, sorting, mastering their fine motor skills, and in this case working on their letter recognition. Same thing with looking through a picture book, they may not be reading word for word, but they are using their imagination to create their own story following along with the pictures, recognizing words as they scan over them, and counting items on the pages too.

These photos capture children at play, they capture the programming the educators provide, the materials and environment created for each child, but what these photos do not capture is the behind the scenes. The long days, the patience, the hard-work, the time, the love and care the educators put into their day every day. I would like to take a moment to say thank you to the Chartwell Staff for everything they do, every day.

We appreciate you!

I’d like to take another second to THANK the Families who got together to provide a very delicious lunch for the whole staff to show their appreciation to our educators on ECE Appreciation Day. It was such a kind gesture to show your appreciation, and now in return we want to THANK YOU to show ours.¬† Thank you Thank you Thank you!

Now….let’s enjoy the weekend.

‘Till next week folks.

The Chartwell House.