HELPING PARENT HINTS


Arrival – Please come about 5 to 10 minutes early to discuss the day’s plans and set up. Ask the teacher how you can help the children as they arrive.

Circle Time – This is a time for the class to come together as a single group with one focus. Feel free to sit beside your child. Encourage stragglers to join in with us. If a child is being disruptive, quietly encourage him to join in or help him in the bathroom, etc., if needed.

Centers – Be aware of where help is most needed. For instance, help children put on smocks for painting, put clean paper on easels, hang wet paintings on clotheslines, print child’s first name in upper right-hand corner of all papers and projects…capitalize the first letter only. If a child is dashing about or disrupting another child’s play, please help the child direct his or her attention to one activity. Offer encouragement and assistance where necessary. In the art area, the process is more important than the product. Let them explore the medium. Play with the children and enjoy them…and yourself!

Clean up – We want to work with the children.

  1. Blocks – Stack and shelve.
  2. Housekeeping – Tidy the area.
  3. Manipulatives – Put toys in proper containers and on shelves, as marked; assemble and stack puzzles.
  4. Art area – Wipe art table well, return supplies to shelves, wash out brushes, put up play dough, etc.
  5. Easels – Wipe up spills, wash out brushes and cover paints.
  6. Sand Table – Sweep up around the table and replace the lid.

Outside Play – Help children with coats. The teacher and helping parent will divide the supervision so that all children are watched and receive needed assistance. All children must remain inside the fenced area at all times. Safety is our first concern, inside and out.

Snack – Toward the end of outside playtime, you and your child may set up the snack. Napkins, plates and cups may be placed at each child’s and adult’s seat. All adults and children will sit and eat snack together. Fill the pitchers about halfway so that the children may serve themselves. Likewise, the food may be placed on “serving plates” at the center of the table. Encourage and help children clean up after themselves. After the children have left the snack area, you may need to wipe up spills and crumbs.

Dismissal – During the last circle time, collect art objects and handouts, etc. and place in each child’s book bag or cubby. Help children with wraps and help them gather their belongings as they leave.

Before you leave – Sweep and vacuum the floors. Mop, if needed. Clean the toilet. Cleaning supplies are stored in the preschool closet. Empty the trash.

Remember: Your child might act “different” the day that you are helping. It is difficult to share a parent!

Please give yourself a pat on the back! Your role as helping parent is vital to our program. We thank you for your time and energy.

PLAYGROUND SAFETY

In an effort to be consistent and to keep all accidents and injuries to a minimum, please help us with the following playground rules, all of which the children know because these are school rules. If you see ANY child breaking one of the rules, remind them of the rule and ask them to show you the correct method.

Swings – Children are to sit on their bottoms and swing back and forth, not side to side. They may not twist the swings and spin around. They are not allowed to push and/or throw around an empty swing, lest it hits someone in the head. No “airplaning” (lying on the stomach), no jumping out of swings.

Slides – Slides are for sliding down. No climbing up the slide the ‘wrong’ way. We slide on our bottoms, not headfirst. Only one at a time. The base of the slide is to be clear before the next child slides.

Fireman’s Pole – Make sure the person at the base is out of the way before allowing another child to proceed.

Sand Box -Sand stays in the sandbox. Buckets of sand are not to be taken out and poured on the climbing structure or dumped down the slide. Sand is not to be thrown or slung, and must remain close to the ground so that it does not get into someone’s eyes.

Bikes – Helmets must be worn when bikes are ridden.

Water Play -Children must wear water shoes or shoes designated for water play. Water must remain inside the sandbox. Water volume should be regulated to allow creation of canals, ponds, etc., but not enough to fill the sandbox

Gates – Keep ALL GATES LOCKED AT ALL TIMES.

Accompanying Children – Do not send a child into the building unless an adult accompanies him or her, or you know there is an adult inside the door to receive the child.

Miscellaneous

No climbing on the brick walls or on fences or trees.

Do not play with sticks.

No Power Ranger play or dramatic play that involves hitting, punching, kicking, etc.

HOW CAN I HELP?

Some of the best learning experiences are ‘real’. Children learn so much more by seeing a baby or cooking and tasting pumpkin pie than by seeing a picture.

When we cook in preschool, the children use their senses to see, touch, and taste ingredients: develop language with new vocabulary words; learn the concept of measurement and many other pre-reading skills. Besides all of this, they enjoy it and are therefore more attentive. In the past ,we have asked parents if they have any hobbies or occupations which they could share with our class. Some parents have felt their occupations or hobbies are not interesting enough. Please know that all children are inquisitive and want to learn everything.

You need not be an expert to share with the class. Let your child’s teacher know if you are interested. The two of you can plan a time and date to discuss guidelines for what to do and expect.

The following are examples of projects you can share:

  • If you plant a garden or like to cultivate flowers, you could bring the different seeds and tools to our class and demonstrate planting a seed.
  • If you are a crafty person and make T-shirts or dolls, you could bring these in and demonstrate how it is done.
  • If you are a rock, seashell or toy collector you could bring in some examples and show the class.
  • If you have a special pet, you could bring it in for a visit.
  • If you have a new baby and wouldn’t mind sharing him or her, the children would love to have both of you visit.
  • If you like to tell stories or if you and your child have a favorite book, you could come in and read it to the class.
  • If you are an amateur or professional carpenter, you could bring in your tools and demonstrate building something simple.
  • If you decorate cakes, the children would love to watch.
  • If you sing, the children would love to listen.
  • If you play a musical instrument, the children would love to listen and sing along.
  • If you make your own Christmas wreaths, Easter baskets, etc., a short demonstration would be great.
  • The sky’s the limit. Children are always proud to share their parents!

CAN I HELP?

Please complete and give this form to a teacher or the director whenever you are willing to help create a real and relevant learning experience, as explained under ‘How You Can Help’

Name: _______________________________________ Phone ___________________________

Child’s Name: _________________________________ Class: __________________________

I would like to: _________________________________________________________________

The best days of the week and time for me to visit the class are: __________________________

PLAYDOUGH RECIPES

Kool-Aid Playdough Recipe

Ingredients: 3 cups all purpose flour 1 1/2 cups salt 3 small packages Kool-Aid mix 8 tsp oil and 3 cups boiling water (This can be boiled in the microwave.)

  1. Mix Together: 3 cups all purpose flour 1 1/2 cups salt 3 small packages Kool-Aid mix
  2. Add: 12 tsp. Oil 3 cups boiling water
  3. Knead on wax paper until smooth. If sticky, add flour.
  4. Cool before storing in a ziploc bag.

Cream of Tartar Playdough

Ingredients: 2 cups flour 1 cup salt 2 cup water 2 T. vegetable oil 4 t. cream of tartar Food Coloring

Directions: Mix the ingredients together and cook slowly until the dough pulls away from the sides of the pan (It takes awhile) and looks like playdough. Do not under cook. When cool, knead until smooth, store in an airtight container. Keep in refrigerator. Will last for weeks. You may color the dough by adding drops of food coloring.

Alum Playdough

Ingredients: 5 cups flour 1 cup salt 4 T. alum (a preservative found in the spice or canning sections of your grocer) 2 T. salad oil 3 cups boiling water (add food coloring to the water if you want colored playdough)

Directions: Mix all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add boiling water. Stir together. When cool enough, put it on the table and knead until thoroughly mixed. Divide the dough into portions and seal in plastic bags.

Suggestions

Add food coloring of your choice. A few suggestions for seasonal/holiday colors are:

  • October-Orange
  • December-Red
  • February-Red
  • April-Yellow or Pastels

Feel free to be creative! You can add extracts such as vanilla for a different smell or you can mix in glitter for visual appeal! Please avoid glitter for the Infant/Toddler Class.