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Monday, October 17, 2011


Last Saturday I did a workshop for Kids Country Child Development Centers near Cleveland.  What a fun group!!!  What happy teachers!  You’ve probably seen the magnet that says, “If momma ain’t happy – ain’t nobody happy!”  Well, if teachers aren’t happy, then how can they make their children happy?

They invited some of their kindergarten students to introduce me.  Talk about charming!  The children sang “The Fifty States” taking a deep breath between each chorus.  Can you believe those five year olds could learn the 50 states in our country?  Only with a song!
 Sheryl Herter and Jami Eshelman shared this idea to encourage kindess in their classroom.  They cut two hearts out of paper.  One heart gets wrinkled up as they describe things children say to each other that hurt feelings.  Once the heart is all crinkled up they try to smooth it out.  It reminds the children that once you say something unkind you can never take it back.  They hang up both hearts as a reminder to think before they tattle or say hurtful things.

Beth Morehart told a story with a coffee filter.  Fold the coffee filter into fourths before you begin.
This is a story about a family of Eskimos who lived in a house made of ice.  They were snuggled in their igloo and they wanted to watch the snow falling outside so they cut a little door out of their house.  (Tear a door.)  They couldn’t see the snow very well, so they cut a window out of the side of the house.  (Tear a window.)  Then they decided to cut another window out of the other side.  (Tear another window.)  It was getting very cold so they built a fire.  And when you build a fire, you know you need some place for the smoke to escape, so they cut a hole in the top.  Then they went outside and what do you think they saw falling from the sky?   (Open up the coffee filter and throw it in the air to look like a snowflake falling.)

Ann Malecky showed us how to make a slice of pizza out of a lunch bag.  First, crinkle up the bag and then “sculpt” it to look like a slice of pizza.  Children will enjoy decorating their pizzas with construction paper and they can even write a “how to” recipe.  Perfect for singing the “Pepperoni Pizza” song!