Palm Parade Surprise

By Brittany Notch, Tadpole Class (2/3 Year Olds) Teacher and parent of a child in the Monkey Class (3 ½-5 Year Olds)

Working with children between the ages of six months to five years, there are often surprises.  When we keep our eyes open to the wonders of God’s love, amazing surprises are revealed within our preschool.  We have an Easter tradition at The School of Grace, where friends, teachers and Helping Parents participate in a Palm Parade during Music Class, the week before Easter.  We hold our palm prawns (felt palm leaves) and instruments (typically jingle bells strung on pipe cleaners, which are easy for tiny hands and fingers to hold) as we wave our palm prawns, ring our bells and sing the first verse of “Jesus Loves Me” over and over.  Before we begin the song again, we pause and shout, “Hooray for JESUS!”

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Learning Through the Arts at The School of Grace

“Learning Through the Arts at The School of Grace” -Kris M., parent and Board Member

The Arts–music, painting, dance–are front and center at the School of Grace. On a recent morning as Helping Parent, I witnessed the impact this exposure to the arts has on our students. A refugee student, who spoke little English and knew little of the arts when he joined three years ago, expressed his sadness in morning circle when he learned there was no time for art that Wednesday. What wonderful growth this child has experienced at The School of Grace.

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When is the Right Time for Preschool?

-Lynn Hess, Director

June and July are often months when parents of preschool aged children wonder if their child would benefit from a school experience prior to kindergarten. Friends and family frequently influence this decision with opinions and recommendations based on their own experiences. As a mom, I sought input from many resources regarding good schools and appropriate ages.

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Nurturing Determined Children

– By Sarah M.

You know the look the bottom lip comes out, the brows go down, the arms get crossed. Your child is determined to get their way. They won’t give in and they know you will. What’s a parent to do? If you force them to do what you want, your child will start shouting, get aggressive, or just cry. If you walk away or do the task for them, they learn that their determination worked, but they have missed an opportunity to use their determination productively.

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The Little Drummer Boy

– Lynn Hess

After Thanksgiving, our focus in Music class is on Christmas.  We sing fun songs, like “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”, during which we clap, jump and twirl to a variety of verses; and “Jingle Bells”, when we imagine what it must be like to ride in a one horse open sleigh (and, of course, we play bells).  All of our fun songs evoke smiles, movement and joy.

We continue with “Go Tell it on the Mountain”, combining a mixture of hand motions and sign language.  The most touching part is the last chorus, when I tell the children to use their big (not yelling) voices so others beyond the classroom can hear us.  The result is a beautiful collection of young voices owned by beaming children, who understand that the good news of Jesus’ birth is to be shared.

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