Saturday, November 30, 2013

A Village Christmas

A Village Christmas 
on the square in Metamora
Sunday, December 8th
Noon-3:30 p.m.
Come and join the holiday fun!
Need more information?
Call Pat or Renee at Historic Grounds

Thursday, November 28, 2013

I Have Plenty to Be Thankful for...

I am thankful for so many things in my life. I am really fortunate I can say I love my work.  Here's a list of what I give thanks for at MCP--

I am thankful that you choose MCP.  It means a lot that you choose us to provide your child's first school experience.  I am thankful that my husband is so understanding of ALL the things that I save at home---jars, milk caps, boxes. He gets it.  I am thankful that YOU save all the things that make our program fun---cereal boxes, jars, greeting cards, egg cartons, plastic lids and more. It takes time and effort and I thank you!  I am thankful for our MCP board members who take care of our school registration, fundraisers, family fun night, Facebook, Pinterest,  school website, bookkeeping, payroll, taxes, tuition deposits and so much more. They keep MCP running smoothly. I am thankful for the mom volunteer who said 'Yes' to setting up our Shutterfly account (again :-) I am thankful to our volunteer parents help out when teachers are sick.  I am thankful when parents volunteer to put together tables, carts, playsets, etc. (I am a lot of things but handy is not one of them) I am thankful for the community support we receive at MCP.  I am thankful for Christian Union Church.  We are so fortunate to be a part of their ministry.  Without their support, MCP would not exist.  I am thankful CUChurch shares so many of their facilities with MCP.  We cook in the kitchen.  We use the attic to store lots of our equipment.  We use the Fellowship Hall for large motor activities in the winter, our preK Thanksgiving program and end of the year program for the 3 y/o.  We use the sanctuary for our Christmas and Graduation program.  They are very good to MCP.  I am thankful I can wear jeans and a sweater to work most days :-)  I could go on and on but I am so very thankful for the opportunity to do what I love. The common core of our program is we love, we laugh and we learn. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


We will have some more fun with cardboard in December.  What's next?  Numbers and Christmas trees!

41st Breakfast with Santa

Tickets are available at Metamora Pharmacy, Germantown Hills and Metamora Heartland Bank.  Tickets are $4 per person in advance or $5 at the door. 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

How to Keep the Kiddos Busy...

These are just too cute!  I saw the ornaments this past weekend at our local superstore for 88 cents.  A cheap way to keep the kids busy over the holiday break!   The possibilities are endless...dried beans (red, white and green peas), sea shells, birdseed, buttons,  Barbie shoes, curling ribbon, Scrabble letters...

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Learning Our Letters

Because we do not use worksheets/printables in our preschool, we provide many different activities for letter recognition.  We reuse cardboard from gift boxes and cereal boxes, glue a letter  (or shape) and the children place small items to create a letter. 

We had thousands of jeweled hearts donated to our program.  
Pony beads make pretty letters!
 Save and dry out those pumpkin seeds!
All those seashell necklaces?  Cut them apart and glue.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

The MCP Pizza Parlor 2013

Our TTh  3 y/o class has been all about pizza this week.  In our dramatic play area (for all classes) we have a pizza parlor.  For photos and more information---

On Tuesday, we made a paper pizza together as group---

Today we made 'bubblegum pizza'.  It was yummy!  For the recipe and more information---

We also recorded our favorite pizza and if we liked the 'bubblegum' pizza. Charts will be posted soon.

This year we also have pizza lacing cards in our discovery center.  We love lacing activities at MCP.  Frozen pizza boxes (yes, there will be a request to save in the December newsletter :-) make great lacing cards!  Cut around the pizza picture, hole punch and add yarn. Need more ideas?  Here you go---
Pizza Lacing Cards
Pizza provides a lot of fun and learning for your child!

Sunday, November 17, 2013


There will be no school on Monday, November 17th.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Work Zone

I found these construction zone cones at our local dollar store (the store where everything is a dollar).  They were located in the educational section.  They are perfect for block play!!! 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Fruits & Vegetables

Food is the focus for our MWF preK classes.  We have learned about healthy & junk foods and fruits & vegetables.  A large group activity was cutting out food from grocery ads and gluing.  First, we looked for healthy foods and junk foods.  If you see coffee under healthy, don't judge :-)  I agreed with the child!
We also learned about fruits and vegetables.  They grow on trees, on vines, above the ground and below the ground.  More cutting and gluing...
We had vegetables in the discovery center to look, smell, touch, examine, weigh and compare (and then into my compost).
Discovery Center
For this activity, the children have to sort the fruits and vegetables.  After a teacher checks, they get to press the easy button.
Center Activity

 A group activity has the children deciding if  a card is a fruit or vegetable.  Each child receives two cards (made w/clip art).  I have 3 x 5 cards with pictures.  Sometimes I find it easier ( and cheaper) to just draw and color vs. looking for clip-art or images.  I held up a card and the children decide if it is a fruit or vegetable.
 We tasted vegetables last week and tomorrow fruit. Yummy!

What can you do at home?  When you are at the grocery store (and have time) spend some time in the produce section looking at and talking about all the fruits and vegetables.  You can talk about the color, shape, size and how/where the fruit/vegetable grows.  Have your child pick a fruit or vegetable to try at home. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

I SPY 2013

Our TTh 3 y/o class finished up our I SPY unit today.  Each child made an I SPY bottle and an I SPY picture.  We also looked at our I SPY books and talked about the parts of our eye (pupil, lash and brow).  To create our I SPY pictures, we (teachers) cut out lots and lots of pictures.  I am always looking in magazines, catalogs and newspaper ads for pictures for this unit.  Each child receives a small piece of tagboard.  We place the pictures in the center of the table and the children begin to glue...
And soon we have our own I SPY picture.  You can add more pictures at home or make another I SPY picture with your child.

We also have an I SPY sensory tub.  There are many items in the tub. The children search, place the itiem in a tub and identify until they find everything.  Then they put everything back into the tub and hide for the next friend.
We have extra bottles, lots of little items, ziploc bags and instructions on our parent library cart. Have some fun making an I SPY bottle with your child.

More info and how to's---

Monday, November 11, 2013

Living Lands and Waters

In 1998 at the age of 23, Chad founded Living Lands & Waters. Today, the organization has grown to include a full staff and fleet of equipment. The crew averages nine states a year along the Mississippi, Illinois and Ohio Rivers, as well as many of their tributaries. Since the projects inception, Chad, his crew, and over 60,000 volunteers have collected over 6 million pounds of debris from our nations greatest rivers.  Most recently, Chad expanded the mission of the organization to include Big River Educational Outreach, The MillionTrees Project, and the Adopt-a-River Mile programs.

Chad (an Illinois boy) has made it to the finals for the CNN Heroes of the Year.  To find out more and vote, please review the following CNN site: 

Voting closes on November 17th, 2013.

What a great source of pride and inspiration  for Illinois, our rivers, our country and our future.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Young Authors

On our parent library cart, we have several books filled with stories from previous classes.  We write a lot at MCP.  The children dictate.  I write as fast as I can and then I type it up, add pictures and print for each child.  Sometimes we write 'reports' and dictate the facts we learned about a subject.
Sometimes we use our imagination and tell wild and wonderful stories.
What can you do at home?  Put your child's stories in a 3 ring notebook (page protectors might be a good idea, too).  Read the stories with your child.  Your child can 'read' their story over and over again.  Often when we are writing a story,  I have to end the story before some of the children are finished.  Your child can dictate to you and continue the story (the Halloween story was in their backpacks this week).  Type it  up and add clip art.   You and your child can create your own stories or reports.  Write about a vacation, a visit to the zoo or anything else that interests them.  Get a pen and paper and starting writing with your child.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Cardboard Boxes

I love using cardboard boxes at school.  We use cardboard boxes for dramatic play.  You can check under the Dramatic Play label to see a rocket, fire truck, Santa's  sleigh and much more.  We also love to color and create on these beautiful brown blank canvases.  

First, we color or use dot markers.
Next, we glue!  We glued shapes.  We glued the big shapes first and then we add smaller shapes.
 Can you find a circle, square, triangle, oval, rectangle and heart?  What colors do you see?

 We glued letters!  Can you find the first letter of your name?
You can find die-cut letters at your local 'dollar store'. 
We are gluing the letters of the alphabet.  We will post a picture when we are finished.