• Composting with Worms!

    COMPOSTING WITH WORMS What’s your favorite animal? I love worms. Yes, really. Next to snails, they are my favorite land creature. They’re fascinating and, even with how underappreciated they often are, worms do a lot for us and we can learn so much from them. Worms teach us that no matter how small we may be, we are capable of making big differences in the world.  Let’s work together to treasure the small and “disgusting” creatures. They have a job to do to maintain balance in the Earth’s ecosystems. It’s up to us to protect the tiny creatures who eat rotting material beneath our feet. Let’s pass this knowledge and…

  • Dual Language Learners: Who are They and How Can Teachers Support Them?

    As August looms over us and summer comes to an end, teachers from all over the country will enter their classrooms to meet a whole new group of students as they do every year. The beginning of the school year can be an exciting time, however, amongst the excitement, there may be moments where teachers, students, and parents feel worried, nervous, and even anxious about what’s to come in the new year. For some students, these feelings may be amplified– particularly for those who are having their very first school experience! Now, picture these young preschoolers coming into our classrooms. Sometimes they cry, sometimes they remain quiet all day, and…

  • What are the Benefits of Teaching Summer School?

    When teachers are presented with the option or requirement to teach summer school, many may automatically think of that sweet, sweet extra paycheck. However, when gearing up to teach a summer session, there are a lot more benefits to the job than just the financial one. I’ve been teaching summer school every summer since I started my first full time teaching job, and I’ve grown to love it! After reflecting on my experiences from teaching summer school, here are a few of my biggest takeaways: Summer school is an opportunity to collaborate with new professionals outside of your home school community. Over the past three summers, I’ve had the opportunity…

  • Scheduling Time for Yoga

    Feeling Qualified When someone suggests taking time to introduce yoga into your home, several thoughts may come to mind. You may be thinking: “Great, one more thing I need to plan and schedule into my already hectic day.” “I can’t even touch my toes, I’m supposed to show my child how to do yoga?” “I leave early and get home late. When am I supposed to be doing this?” “I just don’t think my kids will be into it.” It’s so easy to be gung ho about an idea or practice that is beneficial for kids and family. Putting it into practice, however, is where most of us choose to…

  • Introducing Yoga in the Home

    Feeling Qualified Often times we refrain from introducing something new into a child’s play for fear of it being complicated or time consuming. Perhaps we don’t fully understand it ourselves or feel discouraged from others due to cultural and communal expectations. When looking into yoga for children, many parents are interested but shy away from classes that are not affordable for them; leaving parents as the teachers. Could parents really be suitable teachers for something like teaching yoga? Would their children understand? Of course! Luckily for us, children are sponges and yoga is about the person; not the pose. Children can access yoga in their play immediately after being introduced.…

  • Would you sit still and focus?!

    The Problem I can remember countless times during my childhood that I just could NOT sit still in school. In Second Grade, I got in trouble for the very first time for my wiggles. We were studying vocabulary words and I’d subconsciously devised a strategy for these simple words. Each time I would spell a word, I swung my legs forcefully forward while saying each letter in my head. “ Office. O *swing* F *swing* F *swing* I *swing* C *swing* E *swing*.” I was very quickly working through my vocabulary when suddenly my teacher said quite loudly “Lydia, if you do not stop that right now you’ll have to…

  • This Classroom Energy is Intense!

    The Problem Let us imagine for a moment the most incredibly perfect classroom. It has an impeccable layout, space galore, neverending supplies (that you don’t have to pay for), and students who manage stress like meditation gurus. Classroom support runs aplenty and transitions occur without a hitch. This is a classroom that provides students with substantial time for movement and physical activity every day–they play outside, have movement centered classes scheduled within the school day, and have enough space in the classroom to take moments of exercise when necessary. The perfect classroom. HA! I couldn’t even begin to imagine it! Could you? Let’s be honest for a moment. The perfect…

  • Let’s talk about breath baby!

    The Problem A student in your class has become extremely agitated. They show the typical symptoms leading to a melt down. Tightened fists, tense facial muscles, perhaps some tears and of course, shallow quick breathing. In this moment, our first words are “Take a deep breath”. Easier said than done. But, we persevere and break through the barrier that was put up by this tiny body and guide them through several deep breaths, with our own lungs modeling the activity, before reaching a conflict resolution. Now, let’s hold on a moment. This seems like a great moment! We were able to guide this student to a relaxed state and work…

  • Hey Grown Ups! We Need to Wiggle!

    The Problem Children ages 3-8 receive approximately 15-25 minutes to move during their 6-8 hour school day. Imagine for a moment that you have to sit at your work desk for 6-8 hours without leaving your seat except for 20 minutes to move around (often times in an empty gymnasium) and about 30 minutes to eat your lunch. At the end of the day you’d be breaking down, exhausted, on the verge of tears and increasingly unmotivated to return the next day. Your job performance would suffer and I’m sure your coworkers would bear the brunt of your misery. Now imagine that you are not equipped with the analytical capacity…

  • Multicultural Inclusion in an Early Childhood Education Classroom

    It is important that parents and early childhood educators are aware of how multicultural education–or lack of it–can impact a student’s social emotional development. Early childhood educators have many responsibilities throughout the school day and beyond to ensure the success of their students. These responsibilities include morning meeting, assessments, and curriculum planning, development, and changes. Another responsibility that teachers have is to provide students with a multicultural education and ensure that there is a representation of diverse cultures and ethnicities in the classroom. As teachers, one of our goals is to create a classroom environment in which all students feel welcome and valued. Studies show that students are able to…