Teacher Newsletter

October 2015

Education Department News

Parent / Teacher Conferences: November 2015

Conferences allow our families to be a part of their child’s learning process and eliminates communication barriers between the home / school connection. Conferences allow teachers to showcase the children’s achievements as well as discuss educational goals for the children. During conferences, our goal is to meet with 100% of families! To help your team achieve this goal, please review the best practices listed below when planning your conferences. Conferences will be held during the months of November and May. Please select one week that works best for your center to hold conferences. Place a copy of the conference flyer in every child’s cubby:

  • Personally invite families to sign-up for conferences
  • Post the conference sign-up sheet in a high traffic location in your center
  • Offer flexible schedules for families including conferences calls
  • Send conference reminders to families
  • Ensure teachers are well prepared
  • Complete the Parent / Teacher Conversation Form for each child
  • Hold conferences for 20 minutes for each family
  • *Please have teachers write in the date and times for the families to sign-up that works best for your center & families.

Pre-K Academy Pen Pal

Each month (starting in September) each Pre-K Academy class will receive a letter from one of the characters. As part of a required curriculum component, PKA teachers will open the letter as a class and read it to the children. The letter will begin to give the character some personality traits and will also relate to the curriculum themes that the children are working on. Each class will also receive a large pad of paper for the children to brainstorm a response to the character. This paper should then be displayed in the classroom as evidence of education. You will write the children’s ideas down in a letter that will be mailed to the Education Department. Through this process, you should talk about the format of writing a letter, how to address an envelope, and how the mail system works. We will then write each class a letter back (from the perspective of that Pre-K Academy character) answering the questions they may have asked and commenting on their responses. This back and forth communication will happen each month- from September to May.

Your school should have received the new Pre-K Academy All Star Cards. Each child will be receiving cards for each specific character and also for the different domains of learning. These cards will contain facts about each character’s persona and will help the children be able relate to the characters.

The Learning Environment

Large Group / Circle Time

It is important to establish a consistent place in your classroom where the whole group can gather and talk about the day, listen to stories, be introduced to new math and science materials, transition from one activity to another, and participate in music and movement activities. Many classrooms are not large enough to have an area developed solely to whole-group activities, so we suggest you use the group time area as another center to ensure you are using your classroom space effectively.

Large-group meetings are most successful when the meeting time is kept short (usually 10-20 minutes) depending on the age of the children and how interested they are in what is happening.

To learn additional information please review The Creative Curriculum® for Preschool, Volume 1 pages 73-74.

Strategies for Reading Aloud to Young Children https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tZ2rL0eByfc

Dealing with Challenging Behaviors

Young children with challenging behaviors are more likely to experience expulsion from preschool programs at twice the rate of K-12 students.

Supporting Self-Regulation:

Self-regulation is the ability to monitor and control our own behavior, emotions, or thoughts, altering them in accordance with the demands of the situation.

It is important to include activities in your lessons that develops self-regulation. Here are a few examples:

Red Light, Purple Light
This game follows the same concept as "red light, green light". Using different colors for stop and requires children to regulate their responses and adapt to the change. First assign "go" and “stop” to non-sequential colors (ex: purple and orange). Use construction paper as a visual. Alternate the “stop” and “go” colors. Once the children grow accustomed to the colors and their corresponding meaning, make changes so that children must once again regulate their responses.

The Freeze Game
This game requires music! The teacher will play the music and then when she stops the music the children must freeze and be still as statues in whatever position the froze in. Then the teacher will play a variety of different music. The children must dance quickly to upbeat and fast songs, and they must dance slowly and gracefully to the slow songs. Then when they have gotten the hang of that, switch it up and have them dance slowly to the fast songs and quickly to the slow songs.



Teacher Spotlight

Mrs. Tina is a wonderful addition to our Rainbow Millers Creek team! She has years of experience in the field and is a strong advocate for young children and families.

Mrs. Tina has been employed with Rainbow for 4 years. She is currently our Lead teacher in the Toddler classroom. As the Lead Teacher in the Toddler’s, Tina provides rich activities and experiences for the children. She puts a lot of time and thought into her lesson planning and it certainly shows when she is in action! She captivates the toddlers (and her teammates) with her groovy dance moves! We love Tina and we are so thankful to have her on our team!