This past week, we have continued to use different objects and tools to measure our bodies and various items around the classroom. It is wonderful to see the initial idea translated in so many different ways by the children. Nina, Charlotte and Parker have been particularly interested in using the tape measure tool this week. Nina even held the tool up to the pumpkins and looked at the numbers. Charlotte was really excited by the way the measuring tape would slip out and retract on its own. Mia thought that part of the tool was a button and kept trying to press it (it really moves up and down to lock or unlock the measuring tape). Parker has triumphantly carried the tape measure around the classroom and has gotten so good at announcing "MY tape measure!" as he walks around. As this fascination with numbers and measuring continues, we will be adding more tools (rulers, meter sticks, tape measuring tools that aren't encased, and more!). If you can think of any fun measuring tools, please share with us!
Since October has rolled around, we worked on our third self portraits! Even more expressive language is occurring as we sit to work on these lovely self representations.
There is already a big shift toward making round shapes for our portraits. Peering into the mirror is helping us translate our facial features into 2 dimensional shapes. We are seeing some amazing fine motor grip control as well. I can't wait to see the changes between now and November!
As we become even more familiar and comfortable with each other, there has been more movement from parallel play (next to one another), to direct interaction with one another. Of course some of this involves grabbing and taking from each other- but that's a very big part of being two! We encourage the children to use their words: "It's my turn." "I'm using it." "I'm not finished yet." "Give it back." On the flip side, we talk to the impatient children with language such as, "Your friend is still using that toy, and I know it can be frustrating to wait, but you can have a turn when he/she is finished," or "Can you ask for a turn?" Sometimes we suggest other things to do while we wait, as well. It's a process, but it will happen for everyone!
The children are starting to form connections and use physical gestures with each other. We have seen friends trying to pat or touch other children's hair, giving hugs, high fives, looking closely at one another and laughing -- which has also led to some imitation play. One friend will do something like pick up a toy and laugh, and then the other child will copy this behavior.
As we get to know ourselves, we also get to know each other.
Parents, it has been such an amazing pleasure getting to know you and your children the past couple of weeks. I have learned so much about their personalities, likes, and dislikes. They have already given me so much love and affection. I am going to miss each and every one of them while I'm away for the next few months- but I will definitely be following along on their journey. I will still be assisting with lesson planning and curriculum development during my absence. Although I won't have as much free time, I will still be checking emails and am available to answer any questions that you might have, at any time. I can't wait to see how big your kids become by January!! (I might come stop by for the annual Christmas party, I can't stay away!).
All my best, Rachel