Over these past two weeks we have experienced the seasons change from summer to autumn. At the child care centre we have begun to welcome autumn in many ways.
One song I have been singing and dancing to with the children goes like this – to the tune of “One elephant went out to play, upon a spider’s web one day.”
“Come little leaves said the wind one day
Over the meadow with me and play
Put on your jackets of red and gold
Because autumn is here and the days grow cold”
We have been making leaf rubbings and talking about the changes happening all around us.
Many children have taken part in raking and shovelling leaves together. In this photo Kyle is playing his guitalele for the children while they work together in the yard.
Children have been working together cooperatively to create leaf piles for playing with.
Although the weather has become cool and crisp, we continue to do many of our “indoor” activities outside. The fresh, open air is so positive for the health of everyone’s bodies and souls. We will continue to draw, build and do other activities outside until it is so cold that we need to wear mittens.
The children have all been enjoying getting their energy out by biking and chasing each other around the yard. They continue to create new games all the time. Often in their outdoor games they end up chasing each other, screaming and laughing! Laughter creates strong bonds between friends, while running and biking are fabulous ways to develop their gross motor skills and grow strong healthy bodies.
The cars have been popular too. These two children spent almost their entire outside time one day riding these cars down our gentle hill and pushing them back up again. Yes, they napped well that day!
In the garden we have been busy harvesting carrots, and I often give the children apples from one of our two apple trees for snacking on outside. I am so grateful to share the experience of eating fresh food and learning where it comes from with the children in our care.
We finally got around to cleaning off the garlic that we harvested a few weeks ago. Everyone was extremely focused and engaged in this activity and it was great for their fine motor development.
While the younger children had their naps, a couple of the older children helped me braid the garlic.
Inside the centre, we have brought some of the autumn beauty to inspire new creations. We dried some of the autumn crocuses that are growing in our yard in our flower press. Children glued the flowers onto paper and made drawings featuring the dried crocuses.
Continuing with our autumn theme, we played a cooperative harvesting board game called “First Orchard.” This game kept everyone engaged and working together, by following simple rules and matching colours.
With the shift in seasons, children have been getting more cozy and enjoying quiet, restful times in our “nest” area. We have hung laminated copies of the children’s family photos up in this space with velcro. The children are able to take down their photo to have with them as needed, or show their family photo to their friends.
Now that the weather is cooler, we have begun baking again. We made sourdough raisin buns.
Which the children enjoyed for their afternoon snack.
We also made energy balls for morning snack. Everyone helped me add the ingredients in a large bowl. Then I stirred it all up and rolled out individual balls.
The children each rolled their own energy ball in sesame seeds on their snack plate before eating.
Recently, I created a Kindness Jar. Whenever a child does something kind, a staff member writes down their kindness and puts it in the Kindness Jar. We often read out the kindnesses at afternoon snack, and sometimes children ask to bring their kindnesses home with them.
I find this initiative has helped encourage children to practice more acts of kindness and to feel good about helping others feel good at the centre. We always make sure every child has at least one kindness in the jar before we read them out. A kindness can be as simple as speaking respectfully to a friend, or telling someone you like something about them.
Often children offer things to one another when they see someone else wants or needs something, like a toy, a chair or a certain colour of crayon. I think that acknowledging these acts of kindness helps the children to feel the love at our centre even more than before. After all, sharing is caring!
Everyone is thrilled to welcome back our wonderful staff member Marnie, after she was away for a month. To read more about Marnie and all the amazing staff at our centre, please go to our Staff page.
Marnie, we are so happy you are back at Bonnington Blossoms!