Sunday, March 8, 2015

Waiting

Our day at the preschool is filled with many transitions. We move fluidly throughout our day- including these transitions! How? Lots and lots of practice, a healthy dose of ownership over our community, and an understanding of what comes next. Transitions can feel overwhelming at times but there are a lot of ways to make them fun and to reinforce our values of community and connection throughout them. They are also a great chance to build leadership skills and give children a chance to show off their own unique skills. 

As teachers there's a lot of things that happen at once for us to get the entire group outside: potty breaks for older children, diaper changes for younger, cleaning up snack, finishing dishes, making sure lunch prep is good to go, and double checking on anything else we had in process before the transition started. This may sound chaotic, but it's honestly one of my favorite times of the day. Why? We get to watch first hand as children in our community step up to help make the transition smooth! Maybe SC knows a song he wants to teach everyone or DA has a game she's been wanting to share! Sometimes we as teachers suggest these ideas,but often they come to the children on their own!

Recently, while waiting to go outside, TUS had a great idea. As children started to line up along the wall he approached me, "Melinda, remember that song that's like about just a teddy bear and you move in really funny ways?" I nodded, "Yeah! MR used to sing that while you guys waited to go outside a lot." TUS responded excitedly, "Yeah! And basically I was thinking I would sing it right now because sometimes it's really hard to wait." I smiled at him, "That sounds great! You can ask your friends if they are interested." TUS approached the line and told them his idea. Everyone was very enthusiastic about singing and playing the game with him! 

First TUS offered something simple. He turned around- fast!- and asked everyone to copy him. Next, he held up one foot, balancing on the other. This was a little harder! Everyone wobbled as they copied time and a few kids grabbed something near them to steady their bodies. The room filled with laughter as everyone tried to copy without falling over! TUS used a few more moves for his Teddy Bear song (lyrics below) before we were all ready to head outside together. The ownership that TUS took to keep the group occupied with a fun, engaging activity helped us smoothly transition from snack to outside!

Teddy bear, teddy bear, turn around,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the ground,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, reach up high,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the sky,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, bend down low,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch your toes,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, go to bed,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, rest your head,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, turn out the lights,
Teddy bear, teddy bear, say "good night".

(As you can see TUS took some liberty with the lyrics and used different movements than you would find in the song!)

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