Monday, April 28, 2014

The Importance of Poetry in the Pre-School Years.

Finger plays and rhymes come to life during circle and large group times as preschool children show word meaning through simple actions and finger movements.  Preschoolers develop memory and recall skills as they sing and recite the songs and poems in this curriculum resource collection.  Finger plays, action poems, nursery rhymes, and songs are grouped according to early childhood education themes. There's quite a lot of poetry for children around but it can be surprisingly hard to find really good poems to share with children.
For a start, what kind of poems is worth sharing? Does poetry even matter for kids and, if so, why?
But first, the short answer to the question of why it's important to expose babies and young children to poetry.
Believe it or not, hearing poems and rhymes from their earliest days helps children develop three really critical pre-reading and communication skills:
·       phonological awareness;
·       a rich vocabulary;
·       background knowledge;
It's tempting to think that poetry is simply a series of rhyming lines which describe a thing or an experience.

But if it was as simple as that, why would we need poetry at all? Encyclopedias, the internet and other kinds of writing can tell us about experiences, things, people and even complex ideas. What does poetry add that these other forms of writing don't? One explanation I like is that poetry communicates the essence or the soul of something, rather than just describing it.
For example, imagine describing a playground swing to someone: what it looks like and how it feels to swing backwards and forwards. The person you're talking to would probably understand but would he or she really get a sense of the excitement and freedom a child feels on a swing?
Now, take a moment to read Robert Louis Stevenson's short poem The Swing. The poem communicates so much more than any mere description could: the joy, the wonder, the fun a small child feels when he or she swings high up into the air.
Another way to explain it is to say that a poet uses language and linguistic techniques to create visual images that come alive in the mind of the reader or listener.
As the images come alive, the listener or reader becomes part of the experience being described: he is there, at least in his imagination. And because he is there, even for a very short time, his emotions are also engaged. He feels frightened or excited, filled with awe or sad.

Pretty amazing, really,
Ms. Nora Sierra
Kinder Teacher
Early Childhood Coordinator

Monday, April 7, 2014

Environmental tips for Kids


Kids can also do their bit in helping to save the environment. Read these environmental tips for children which you can ask your kids to follow. Kids are often made to feel that they are too small to be given responsibility. Kids when told about the importance of protecting the environment are often eager and keen to help save the environment.

Environmental awareness is the need of the day. Everybody knows that protecting the environment today will prepare for a better tomorrow. Kids too can be taught to do their bit for helping the environment. Nowadays, kids also need to be trained to avoid wasting natural resources and many a times kids too are eager to do their bit.

These are some Environmental tips for Kids
Save Water
Many people just let the water run when they are brushing their teeth or having a bath. Kids should be taught to turn off the tap when soaping or brushing. Parents of children should also practice this as it will show that you too are trying your best to make a difference. Do not let water run while showering and brushing teeth. Another thing your kid can do is take shorter showers. In the same way, kids must be taught to save water while using sinks and in the garden.
Try to Carpool, Walk or take Public Transport
Teach your kids to avoid going to school individually in their cars. The more the number of cars running the more there will be carbon emissions and smog in the air leading to pollution. Arrange for a group of kids living close by to go to school together in one car only. You can also encourage your child to take the bus, walk or cycle up to school. Walking as much as possible to nearby places rather than using a car or bike will help to keep the air in your neighborhood clean and unpolluted.
Go easy on Video Games
Video games consume a lot of energy. As you would have noticed, the computer and television feels hot after kids have finished playing video games. Encourage your kids to go out to play in the fresh air or complete their home work rather than playing these video games. Playing video games consumes a whole lot of energy and much more than regular TV or computer usage. Try to keep this activity to a minimum. In this way, kids can save energy!
Also, teach your kids to turn off the computer monitor or switch off the screen when not in use, rather than leaving it switched on for long hours or all through the night.
Switch off Lights when not in use
Teach your kids to switch off lights, fans and other electronic devices when not in use. Many a times, kids leave the fans and lights switched on when they leave a room which results in a lot of wastage of electricity. Since, kids are not yet completely aware and informed about environmental problems they do not know the consequences. Teach your kids to not waste electricity. As a parent also try to buy fluorescent bulbs instead of normal light bulbs because they save three times more energy than the regular light bulbs.
Plant Trees in your Community
Your kids can find an organization that plants trees in your community. Participating in planting trees is a great way to help the environment. If you have a garden, teach your kids to participate in the gardening, by growing plants and watering them every day. If you do not have a garden, you can have small pot plants in the balcony of your home.
Try to Save Paper
Ask your kids to try to save paper. Try to avoid using paper cups and plates whenever possible. Ask your kids to use cloth towels and rags instead of paper towels and napkins. As a parent also, try to do more work online and store your data on the computer and emails rather than take print outs using paper. Print on both sides of the paper whenever possible. Cutting down on use of paper wherever possible will help to save more trees. Choose to receive printed statements rather than print outs on paper. Use recycled paper. Whenever possible ask your kids to use old magazines, phone books and old newspapers for craft and art work.

Kids and environment
Kids must be educated about saving the environment at a young age itself. In this way, the awareness is created early and they can also influence other kids to do the same. Global warming, pollution and other environmental concerns are on the rise which is greatly harming the environment. If kids can play a role in helping to save the earth, it will be great and we can together strive towards a cleaner and greener Earth.

Ms. Nora Sierra
Kindergarten Teacher “A”
Early Childhood Coordinator
Discovery School

April 20, 2018

Wrapping Up the School Year The end of the school year brings the expected joy at finishing another year, and perhaps some sadne...