Dear Little Stars Families,

It is truly a delight for me to visit in the Little Stars Room and see your children busy at play and happily settled into their daily routines. They are really gelling as a cohesive little group, and they so enjoy being together during free play, gym and outdoor times, project, snack, lunch, and circle times. Last month Yoga was added to the mix, with the Little Stars now participating in a 45-minute class with Jovan (our Yoga teacher extraordinaire) every Thursday morning. Jovan has a very creative and energetic approach to Yoga, and the children have posed like lions, snakes, and turtles, have pretended to make pizzas – shopping for ingredients, kneading the dough, putting pizzas in the oven – and have even climbed the walls with their feet.

Through the past few weeks the Little Stars teachers have focused on Food and Family – curriculum areas that the children can experience first-hand and actively learn about. One day they read “Squirrel’s Fall Search” by Anita Loughrey and Daniel Howarth, then walked over to Key Food to “search” (like the squirrel) for ingredients to make pumpkin fritters, which they made and ate together the next day. Another food activity was making a group food collage by placing cut-outs of different foods onto a long piece of clear contact paper. This collage is displayed above the sand table.

Along with Food, the Little Stars have also been focusing on Families as a curriculum topic. They have read such family books as “The Family Book” by Todd Parr and “Mommy, Mama and Me” by Leslie Newman, discussed together who is in their families, sung “I Love My Family,” made family prints with cookie cutters and paint, and created the places where they live with their families by gluing pieces of fabric onto finger-painted paper. Please check out these places on the wall above the block area. The Little Stars have also been enjoying circle times with Lucía’s mother and abuela, who have been reading to them, in English and Spanish, the book “What Can You Do With a Rebozo? / Que Puedes Hacer Con un Rebozo?” by Carmen Tafolla – then extending the book by giving them puppet characters from the book to act out the pages. This story has been further extended by having each Little Star select a puppet body (all with different shades of skin) to make of themselves, then dress the puppet by gluing on bits of fabric and gluing on yarn for the hair. Please take a look at these puppets on the wall above the bookshelf, with many now wearing a rebozo. These circle times and activities have been a wonderfully meaningful way to bring Spanish language and Latino/a culture into the Little Stars room, especially through the focus on family.

All this focus on food and families led beautifully to our International Food Day celebration a couple weeks ago. Your family posters are wonderful – thank you for putting so much thought and effort into them. The children are continuing to enjoy looking at them and learning more about their friends. And the lunch itself was amazing – it was a beautiful sight to see the Little Stars gathered together at their tables, enjoying one another’s dishes (thank you for preparing) and listening to family stories about all these different foods. Please be sure to take a look at the photos from that special event, displayed on the column as you enter the Little Stars Room.

Upcoming Dates:

Saturday, December 5 – Open House from 10:00am – 1:00pm. (We can still use volunteers, if you’d like to sign up.)

Thursday, December 24 – Friday, January 1 – Collective closed for Winter Break