Casa III Families,
I’d like to start by thanking all of you for coming to conferences this month. I truly enjoyed being able to sit down and talk with each of you about what your child is working on throughout their day in Casa III. Please know that if you ever have any questions or concerns you are always welcome to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will do my best to respond as soon as I can.
There have been many exciting changes happening in Casa III over the past few weeks. We have welcomed a few new children: Liam, Reese, and Aarush. We are so happy to have them as a part of our Casa III community and the children are excited to have some new friends to work and play with! I’d also like to welcome Natalie and Julie to our Casa III staff. The children have loved learning many great new songs from Natalie (and I have too!) and we couldn’t be more excited to have them as a part of our team.
Grace and Courtesy
I’d like to take a moment to share some reflections I’ve had about peer teaching in the Children’s House over the past few weeks. Since the casa is composed of a mixed-age group, it allows the older children to act as a model of grace and courtesy for the younger children. They become leaders and are happy to share their skills and knowledge of the environment with a new friend. One of my favorite observations from the past few weeks was on the first day one of our new children was going to stay for lunch. Without being asked or prompted, one of the older children invited this new child to have lunch with them. They carefully showed them how we set up the table for lunch, and beautifully modeled how the children share a meal together. Then they took the time to show the child how they could clean up their own lunch, again without being prompted or persuaded to do so. In my training, we talked about how these older children are often the best teachers for the younger ones as they are much closer in proximity to that time of development than we are as adults. A six-year old can identify more easily with a three-year old because it wasn’t so long ago that they were that age and struggling with zipping up their jacket or figuring out the perfect way to build the Pink Tower. I love being able to sit and observe the children share their knowledge and skills with each other through peer teaching- not only is one child benefitting in receiving a new presentation, but the older child receives a boost of confidence and it gives them a chance to practice their leadership abilities. Another example is when a child wanted to practice writing some of their letters on paper. Typically they go to an adult and ask them to write a letter for them to practice, but when an adult wasn’t available, one of the older children offered to help. They carefully wrote out a series of letters for the child to practice and then both children continued their work. It was a really beautiful interaction to be able to observe.
A few reminders: as it is still cold outside (and knowing Minnesota weather it will be for a while longer) please make sure to send your child with proper winter gear every day including hats, gloves/mittens, boots, and snow pants. Please make sure these items are labeled as the cubby room can get a little messy when the children are getting ready and items can easily be misplaced. Also, we will be sending home notes letting you know if your child is running low on extra clothing. Please make sure these items are labeled as well to prevent them from lost or misplaced.
Lastly, a reminder that drop-off in the morning is from 8:30 – 8:45 (unless your child is dropped off before 8:30). Please make sure that your child arrives on time as our morning work cycle begins promptly at 8:45. As the children arrive, it is their time to socialize and to greet their friends. It can be very disruptive if children arrive late, and children may feel left out as all of their friends have already begun their work for the day.
On the Calendar
- Thursday, March 23rd - Messy hair and pajama day
- Friday, March 31st - No school, Spring Break
- Tuesday, April 4th - Field trip to Gale Woods Farm
- Wednesday, April 12th - Class Picture Day
- Friday, April 14th - No School
- Saturday, April 29th - JMS Garage Sale
We hope you all have a wonderful, relaxing, and (hopefully!) warm and sunny spring break!
Kasey, Kita, Natalie, and Julie