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When I was a child, I spent many years going to speech therapy in my school, where I was taken out of class to work with a therapist. I also, went to an additional speech therapy sessions in the evening through the health clinic. I do remember, how exciting it was to pick from a treasure box, when I went to an unpleasant place, like speech therapy or even the dentist. If I had a toy like this, I would of been an envied to all my classmates!
So, when I started photography sessions, I would reward children with a small gift of appreciation for co-operating and placed these fun martian fingers in my treasure box. They were a hit with the children, but it wasn’t until I started teaching preschool, when I saw even a more significant use! Anything, that encourages play and coupled with a task to do, can make learning fun, and I highly recommend it! These martian fingers, can go on the child’s pointer finger, and the child can point to the words as he reads along! They can help children sound out the syllables, as a teacher you will have their full attention, for those visual learners.
As moms, sometimes, we see these trinkets, as more junk that children collect, and eventually we are thrilled when it gets lost or thrown out, and so it was with one mother. Although, she quickly realized how valuable they were! Her son asked to wear it as he did his daily reading to her. She was amazed of how he practiced sounding out his words, and she asked for a few spares, for her children, as well to have any extra on hand, in which I highly encouraged.
The martian fingers can be found on amazon, and also I found mine, at
I even found glow in the dark ones, which would complete a fun costume on Halloween night.
I have also used them on photography sets, for fingers protecting the gold in a treasure chest. Pick up these creepy vinyl fingers, and toss them in the Halloween bags, this year!
My first year of teaching, I spend a lot of time creating my own curriculum, and faithfully, went through hundreds of laminating sheets, even though my class size was small with 6 children. I always made 6 copies of each, one for each child.
A better way to save the environment, by just wiping off the markers, when the children practiced their pre-writing skills, and other worksheets. Some of the children, though still try taking them home, they love doing them so much. What do you do with all the unwanted papers, that seem so important to the child. Just take a photo of their work, and add it into their album to remember, how great they did!
Laminating is a time saver, especially if you teach in a home, school, a church setting, a road trip, or even creating your own planner! Best place to buy these sheet is amazon of course! This Scott Laminator, held up its job! I would give it 10/10! I buy, the big bulk Scott package of sheets, usually 200, as it a better savings, and after reading lots of the reviews, the pages do not peel over time, like the cheaper competition. Good Luck in your lesson planning, or reviewing your child’s skill.
I liked to have a new theme, or a theme that builds upon it the following class. Since, each new day changed, its always a favourite day! I might do gears first, and then Robot Day, as you need gears to run a robot! Robot day has been hilarious journey to hear how these preschool lessons have impacted their families lives. Robot day is a great lesson that can be applied at home! Especially, when I pull out my irobot roomba vacuum cleaner, that shows a real robot in action!
The children would freak out! They would jump up high, as it rolled near their feet, they would jump up on benches. Then I would hear of their stories, of how some children thought it would be a great idea for their moms to get this vacuum, and one child even wanted one for his birthday, to clean his own room! This has been a great investment for my floors, and for the thrills it gave the children!
One of the favourite class rooms songs, is “Robot Number One”, sung by the musical group from Australia, called Hi5, one can find it on itunes. A part of the lyrics go, “Robot Number one, Hit the switch and turn me on, We’re gonna have some fun” . Pretending to turn on and off, the children as Robots, turns into a freeze clean up game.
I also love these! As it gives the children a chance to strengthen their arm muscles, to open and close the gripper, these ones listed below, can make it fun for adults, too!
Another fun activity are the Alpha-bots. The capital letters, transform into little robots, with hidden faces, arms, and hands, its a clever transformer. It also makes creating your name out of them fun or creating words that can rhyme!
A fond memory of my childhood is reading with my parents, and receiving Hallmark Pop Up Books. I have a nativity one, and 3 fairy tales in one, where the binding is practically non existent.
For Robot Day, my favourite discovery of a pop up book is titled, If you’re a Robot and you know it” , with a fun active book to play along when you read. The arms, stretch way up high, and I love the lazer eye beams!
Would you like to rent out a Playtography in a Box, of the Robot theme? Where you can borrow, the pop up book, alphabots, and kid hand grabbers, and more! If so, please help me with this survey, https://forms.gle/B88MzgqNaoWCQMyM7
Thank you, Miss Chrissy
Let’s focus on those that make a great performance, and what has come to Calgary!
Get Ready to See Under the Big Top! Calgary Stampede park Lot #6, Aug 16, 2019 to Sept 22, 2019 the Cirque Du Soleil, Luzia has arrived!
In a Preschool school or home setting, one can recreate under the big top of the circus!
Use a Parachute, as a roof top decor, or as I prefer to play a few games, while throwing up the parachute into the air, and hiding under it like a mushroom. We are pretending to be in the big top tent.
As part of the big top tent, and where the children can hid in, until its their turn to perform, a tent or a pop up theatre tent of any decor works as a great solution!
Costumes Pick up some clown noses, each child gets their own, we don’t want to be spreading any extra germs. One could just use some kids friendly face paint, to paint their nose red, and send home their red nose to play with at home.
Have you gone or are you going to Cirque du Soleil, Luzia? Let’s hear your reviews!
In 2014, I was at a local craft fair doing photography sessions. On one of my breaks, I walked by a booth, and saw a 12 year old girl, selling these unique bracelets. This bracelets have a unique a story behind them with a great lesson built right in.
These are “Zip- It’s” Bracelets. Children that wear them are committed to a two-fold idea. Firstly, that if they can’t say something nice to someone, they will keep it zipped! However, if they see someone being bullied, they should speak up and report it and NOT zip-it.
Chantelle and her mom Gina, were there to raise funds for their grass root charity, called “F.I.B.B”, which stood for Families Impacted by Bullying. Chantelle’s older sister, Jade was affected by a group of girls while in high school in England, where she was physically bullied, to the point where she received brain damage, and life long consequences. Jade’s story and her Mom’s is featured in this book, “Ray of Hope” as well as others in Canada. It is a heart felt book that is raw, and can give us a better perspective of all sides.
This concept really resonated with me, where a simple bracelet could serve as a great reminder.
At a later date, I sat with Gina and created “Be Your Own Hero”. A photography session, where children, adults and families, dressed up in caps, masks, pettiskirts, arm bands, and crazy super hero socks, that I provided, to create their own hero, and to stand up as a positive force, in a negative environment.
Here is a fact – Bullying happens to someone in Canada every 7 minutes on the playground, and just think of how often it could happen in a work place, and in other environments, as it comes in a variety of forms.
I had a good friend, that had a heart transplant. At times, she would use an electric motorized cart when shopping in a store, some people would be snide and make rude comments that she was too healthy and shouldn’t be using it. Just like this guy, running to high school classes, wipes out his energy, as he has a congenital heart defect, no one can tell of his battles he has physically inside.
Henry B Eyring said, “When you meet someone, treat them as if they were in serious trouble, and you will be right more than half the time.” and if we take Roger Dawson advice, “Treat everyone you meet as though they are the most important person you’ll meet today”, just think of the difference we can make one on one, and on the sidelines! We can make a difference in every person we meet!
Snack time at home or at preschool, how to set your child up for success!
If you have being playing, its time to tidy and then wash your hands. Here is a fun hand washing song, sung to Row Row Row Your Boat.
Wash your hands
Wash them nice and clean.
Scrub them here (with hand motion scrubbing together)
Scrub them there (with hand motion scrubbing tops of hands)
And scrub them in between (with hand motion scrubbing between fingers).
Wash, wash, wash, your hands
Play our handy game
Rub and scrub, scrub and rub
Germs go down the drain HEY!
Wash, wash, wash, your hands
Play our handy game
Rub and scrub, scrub and rub
Germs go down the drain HEY!
Have a easy pull drawer, eye level where a young child, can pull out. Filled with child size plates, cups, utensils. In a preschool setting, I usually only put what is needed for the class, and then have them practice counting how many they need, as attendance does fluctuate. Ikea is my favourite for kids dishes, and I purposely, don’t always make them match, because I want them to know, its okay if they don’t! Sorry, all you OCDer’s!
Get a kids size spray bottle, and fill it with your choice of a cleaning product. Tell them, you will help assist them to wipe the table clean. I’m sensitive to smells, this is one I can handle that is environmentally friendly, too! If they can’t squeeze the bottle, they can wipe the table!
I aim to try 3 out of 4 food groups. If you are in a preschool setting, where you might rotate snack among parents this is a great choice, as then the children are exposed to a variety of choices, that the might not consider to try! It might also take a bit of time, for them to build up the courage to try something new. I like to say, “Our tastebuds are growing up every day, and you might like it today! ” They can place the food back on their plate, if they don’t like it. It’s funny how children are, they want to surrender the foreign food, that they dislike and give it back to you! I loved how my preschool parents, made a effort in being creative, with different topics that were being taught.
Try this adorable song to sing, to your students prior to snack time, I’m sure before long, they will be singing along!
To the tune of “If you’re happy and you know it’
“Put your hands in the air, in the air. (x2)
Put your hands in the air but we don’t want to leave them there so put your hands in your lap, in your lap.
Put your hand in your lap, in your lap (x2)
Put your hands in your lap and lets get ready for our snack, put your hands in your lap, in your lap”
Sit while you eat, I can’t stress this enough! So important, so a child does not choke. This is a great time, to capture their attention, and read stories during this time.
Although, if bananas are served…play along, and encourage them to communicate through their modern day bananaphones!
Snack time, is a great time to practice manners, and table expectations.
Let them try out new skills like pouring water into a cup. No crying over spilling, and if you stick to water, it isn’t sticky. They will experiment right to the rim and over, just be prepared to have plenty of towels and encourage them to help clean up, too!
Let them play with their food! I have seen wonderful plate creations, and how they come up with creative concepts. Talk about shapes, or what even what letters you can make out of what you have, what pictures or animals can you make?
When one is all finish, how do you clean up? Do you compost, and have to separate packaging? Show them a few times, and before long, they will be doing it all by themselves!
Today, I was able to view the new Residence Inn By Marriott located in Downtown/Belt line District located at 610 10 Ave SW, Calgary, AB T2R 1M3 (587) 885-2288
Designed by Frank Architecture.ca Textured walls, with metal staircases, and huge windows that one can see the Calgary Tower, and also the mountains from the 33rd floor.
As a family with four children, we have stayed in a lot of residence inn’s throughout the United States; as it provides a kitchen and enough space to sleep without having to book two rooms.
The King Size suite, one could definitely put up their feet and make it home especially if travelling for long business trips.
The Family suite, has 2 queen beds, with the pull out couch. It feels more roomy for the family to hang out, and gather around for a meal.
The eating area is spacious, and it has waffle makers. If you have waffle makers, you know you have landed on a great breakfast area! There is a large dining area, for happy hour and where one could catch a meal, even if they weren’t staying in the hotel, with a bar service near by. The outside courtyard has lots of space to visit with bbq and fireplaces.
To work off those waffles, just off of the lobby on the main floor, there is a fitness area with a loft. You will find treadmills, exercise balls, flex machines, elliptical machines, with a view of the Calgary Tower. The hotel does not have a pool, but there are plenty of fun wave pools in the City of Calgary, to check out.
This is a beautiful hotel, who honors the founder of the Calgary Stampede Guy Weadick, throughout the murals, photographs, and even the western boot stitching on the headboards of the beds. You will definitely feel that you have stepped into a modern western heritage hotel! Yahoo, hope you can visit soon!
How do you describe the colour Black if you can’t see it?
Back in my college days, when I was going to school in Early Childhood Education and Development. We had to do an experiment, and report back. We were given a choice to choose one of the following: blindness, deafness, or being in a wheelchair. We had to experience our daily tasks, for 24 hours, inside our home, and outside in a public place. It was then discovered, how our homes or businesses may not of been easily equipped, do we rely on others, as well as our senses to help assist us.
I choose being blind!
I patched up both of my eyes with gauze, and then put sunglasses over top. I then went out to a restaurant, with a group of friends. The waitress, spoke loudly to make sure I could hear what was on the menu. I felt each utensil, and textures of food in my mouth. Here in Calgary, there is a new restaurant, called The Dark Table. You can experience eating withour your eye sight, without having to pretend, and it helps employ up to 70% blind, and visually impaired. Check it out for a true experience, without having to go in pretending to be blind.
Walking throughout the house, I felt each step using the back of my heal, as I walked up and down the stairs, and touched my clothing labels, seams & texture of each piece making sure I was wearing my shirts the right side out. I definetly could not read, braile. It was an enlightening experience to be in another pair of shoes. If you were blind, how would you describe colours?
A favourite book of mine, is called the “The Black Book of Colours” by Menena Colton
Each page in the book is visually black, and it is beautifully illustrated with textured images that describe each colour, through items that one might taste or feel. There is also braile, but reviewers say, that the braile is not bigger enough or textured enough for an visually impaired child to understand, but it at least introduces to a child. I introduce it gently, to four years olds, and would recommend a 8/10.