Tag Archives: school

Meals Made Easy: Grab and Go Snacks

27 Mar

Click here for materials you will need.

Meals Made Easy: Sandwiches

26 Mar

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Musical Instruments: Shakers

20 Mar

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Fox In Socks

2 Mar

Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss

Today is Dr. Seuss’ birthday and is celebrated with Read Across America. Do you have any Read Across America events in your neighborhood?

  • Matching, same and different, size, motor skill, spatial relationships, texture
  • Ages 2-8

Optional Activities

  • Cut out two sock shapes from 5 or more different pieces of patterned scrapbook paper.  Glue a strip of matching paper on a  clothes pin. Have your child match the socks and clip them together with the matching clothes pin. Store the activity in a Ziplock bag.
  • Count how many pairs of socks and individual socks in the laundry basket. Why are there more individual socks?
  • Talk about why tongue twisters are hard to read.
  • Draw a picture of crazy socks.
  • If we wear socks on or feet, what do we wear on our head, hands, etc.?
  • Use a ruler or Legos to measure who has the biggest socks in the house.

Download three free Dr. Seuss Activity Packs for children ages 2-7 from Living Life Intentionally.

No Roof Over Their Head

3 Dec

What would you do if your family lost everything and only had an orange to your name? This 60 Minutes segment was a real eye-opener for our family about the new homeless population-families.  It’s hard to believe but the little boy or girl sitting next to your child in the classroom, may actually be homeless.

Behind Closed Doors

12 Oct

Believe it or not, domestic violence happens and it could be happening to someone you know. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

I was hoping to find an expert to write this blog but I thought maybe a real experience may show that it can happen anywhere. This is not a personal story in the fact that it happened to me but it is a story of a young boy I knew many years ago.

As a naive 23-year-old, I was assigned to teach second grade classroom in a middle-class suburban neighborhood on the outskirts of Washington, D.C. I was thrilled that I, as the newbie, didn’t receive an inner city assignment where I was sure many problems existed. My naivety came to a crashing halt in what I thought would be a promising school year.

In my classroom sat a young boy, Sam*, with huge brown eyes, chestnut colored hair, and freckles splattered across his little nose. I knew his father was having difficulty finding a job but his parents seemed nice, and were interested in how he was doing in school. Sam always tried hard, did average in most subjects but never seemed to be overly motivated to do better. Sam smiled periodically but always looked like his mind was somewhere else.

At one point during the year, something happened and he wanted to see the school counselor. After all of these years, I still can’t remember the reason why he asked to see her. Later that day, the counselor asked if we could sit down to talk about Sam. I was sure she was going to tell me that he was really struggling with his work and was overwhelmed.

Unfortunately, what the counselor told me was beyond my comprehension. Sam was being abused at home and the story got worse. The night before, Sam and his little brother, opened a can of corn and ate it straight from the can. That was their supper. As the night went on, the father began to chase the mother around the house with a gun screaming that he was going to kill her while the children watched. When the father finally settled down, the mother, high on drugs, sat on the couch with a knife at her wrists threatening to commit suicide, also as the children watched. Finally, the night ended up with Sam getting beaten on his back and legs by his father. The counselor told me that little Sam, had several large, fresh bruises on his body and some that were in stages of healing. I couldn’t believe it. How could I not know? No wonder he always looked like his mind was somewhere else and he was struggling in school. My heart was broken for this child.

This story has stayed in my heart for years and I often wonder what happened to Sam; always hoping that the cycle of domestic violence ended with him. I wish I could say that this was the only case of domestic violence I saw in my teaching career, but it wasn’t and I found that it can happen anywhere.

Domestic abuse described by the National Domestic Abuse Hotline as “a behavior in a relationship that is used to gain or maintain power and control over an intimate partner.” This month, I hope you will learn more about domestic violence to help someone else or help yourself.

*Sam’s name was changed for this blog.

National Domestic Abuse Hotline

 

 

 

 

 

Discovery Day

10 Oct

Have you ever been with someone when they have discovered something? An infant discovering his toes, a child discovering a nest, or an adult discovering a new passion. If you have ever experienced someone making a discovery you know how exciting it can be and how full your heart can become.

Discoveries don’t have to be big or even right. They just need to be made. Children need to be allowed to make discoveries daily that allow them to succeed and fail so that they learn valuable life skills such as joy and how to get back up.

In honor of Christopher Columbus’s discovery of America, we are claiming today to be discovery day! Yes, Columbus discovered America but…he thought he was discovering India. Oops! People of his time thought the world was flat, but he discovered it was round and he didn’t fall off the horizon line when his ship sailed over it.

Today, let your child make some discoveries of their own; good or bad. We’ve given you a few ideas below to get you started.

Remember, not every discovery is going to be perfect, it’s how you get up from the discovery that’s important.

Discovery Ideas

  • Give your child a rimmed cookie sheet with several small bowls. Fill a bowl with, baking soda, one with salt, and one with sugar. Fill another bowl with water, one with vinegar and one with milk. Provide them with empty bowls and let them discover. 
  • Put food coloring in some ice cube trays and give your child an eye dropper or old medicine dropper.
  • Cut straws into different lengths and cut pipe cleaners into fourths and see what your child discovers.

For more discovery ideas, visit our website, Smart Mom University.

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