Over 20,000 types of Caterpillars in the world, and they all sprout wings.
Ms. Bethy's is going through its own changes and evolving and a part of that process we wanted to start interacting, communicating, and sharing some cool tips or ideas with parents in the daycare, in the community, and across the country.
I am hoping to provide insight, inspire, bring you comfort in the chaos of raising a child, and most importantly have fun.
I chose a butterfly as a representation for Ms Bethys because I loved the beauty and uniqueness of every type and the process they go through. Children are unique to their surroundings, environment, upbringing, how they learn, and just about every facet of their development. Which makes it very difficult to read a book and that theory works with my child. A lot of the early years are spent just trying to understand the individual child's development. I believe in some childcare settings we lack the communication working with the parents on what we notice and collaborating to bring each child into the next stages in life. While some children learn by strict structure and desk learning, some learn by testing out their own ideas, and some learn from not paying attention at all to what their learning but they absorb the information.
I have 4 children and all 4 have learned in different ways growing up. It could be from situations, their gender, or even just their birth order. Our first son did the "Your baby can read" books and flashcards and memorized books well. Our second son wanted to learn everything his brother was doing but by himself. Our third son was by far the toughest to teach. He wanted nothing to do with letters, colors, reading, he just wanted you to let him play. We feared for his teacher. Our 4th was a girl and she wanted to learn letters and numbers and picked it up like it was something she's done for years. One thing they all had in common was they wanted to learn and enjoyed it but not in the way we assumed.
Lets take our 3rd son Cole for example. Cole was playing video games, board games, and sports earlier than our first 2. Not only was he playing but he was picking it up all really fast and did quite well. My husband was a soccer coach for 13 years so this is mostly from him. In soccer Cole wasn't just athletic, he lacks speed and size, but he has a deep understanding of how the game works; the mechanics of kicking, running, the exact position to be in to win the ball on defense, and where to pass to set his teammates up for goals. Most kids don't develop complex structure of soccer till their 12-13. A lot of the game is concrete to kids under that age. If they have the ball they have to dribble and score, if they don't have the ball they take it from the person that has it. Thats why they call it hive soccer because all the players do is running in clumps doing their job.
When it came to prepping for Kindergarten (which we keep basic because we believe the point of kindergarten is to learn the basics.) We wanted Cole to know his letters, colors, and numbers. He was good with math and understood colors but his letters he struggled with. He would pout and cry when we sat down to do flashcards. We tried just writing them for him, we tried the alphabet song while pointing to the letters, we tried sticky notes of each letter on the wall for him to call out. Nothing worked really well except letter association. He was into superheroes and sports so we connected every letter to a superhero or team. He knew at least 20 letters going into Kindergarten and we were still worried about how well he'd do learning because we struggled to get him to enjoy it.
First week of school he came home beaming because of all the fun he had learning. He couldn't wait to tell us the new letters he knew. He LOVED being in school, he couldn't wait to show us everything and it forced him to remember what he learned so he could tell us. Who knew if we just got out of his way, he would find his own path and in a few short months he's reading level 1 books (to him they are SOOO EASY) and sounding out signs and restaurants we drive by.
Kids will learn. We just have to let them in their own way.
Learning Craft for at Home!
Friends Alphabet Cards
We made these custom Alphabet flash cards for the kids in Ms Bethy's for Christmas as a tool to help them practice their letters at home. Probably wouldn't have worked with Cole but Lily loves them. Each one is a picture of their friends from Daycare to associate a letter with a friend in daycare.
They were really easy to make. We bought game cards off amazon, took photos for each letter, printed off on a regular inkjet printer, glue and laminate.
We play by laying down each card with the letter facing up. Once they know the letter they pick it up till there aren't any left. Another way is to lay them face down and they can turn them over to try and guess the letter.
It's a great game on the go. If you're waiting for a meal at a restaurant and the kids start getting antsy they can play this game while they wait and the drinks and food won't wreck the game.
Thank you for reading the week 1 of Ms Bethy's new blog!