Wednesday, 11 October 2017

St. Catherine's Preschool is 


Welcome back everyone! Wow! October already! The preschool is falling into it's organized chaos of drop offs, transitions, and pick ups! Preschool can be a well oiled machine or can be a little like herding just never know! Either way, we sure have a great time!

Please remember to check the bulletin boards at your child's classroom door as well as the main bulletin board at the bottom of the stairs leading to the preschool office. That way you won't miss out on important notices, health information, parent workshops and notices posted by your fellow families. 

Don't forget to visit: 
Image result for facebook image Facebook. Please follow and like us! The more activity our  Facebook page sees, the better we are seen in the public!! 

Important Dates:
Oct 20 - Elmer the Safety Elephant (4s)
Oct 30 - Children's Halloween Party (201,301,401,403)
Oct 31 - Children's Halloween Party (202, 302, 402)
Nov 2 - Photo Day (302, 402)
Nov 3 - Photo Day (301, 401, 403)
Image result for photographer cartoon kidsNov 13 - Remembrance Day (Preschool Closed)
Nov 15 - Pizza Night & Cake Walk

We are looking for a Parent to be our Secretary on our Board. Let us know if you would like to find out more!! Only 4 meetings to attend all year!! You'll be glad you did (and it looks good on a resume!!!).

AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT...A look at what goes on inside the classrooms!!!!!

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(This is September AND October blog entries as I was a little slow in getting it all started this year!!)

DISCOVERY TWOS - Arsi, Danielle, Susan & Vibha

Our youngest members of St.Catherine's Preschool are beginning to settle in nicely to the program.  Most are happy to stretch their boundaries.  A few still need a little more time to feel secure with Mom and Dad leaving.  Such is the nature of two year olds!  

Image result for GOODBYE PARENTS AND PRESCHOOLERSOften this is their first experience away from family.  They love to explore their surroundings, but still need to stay close to their primary base of support and trust. Separation anxiety can be quite strong at this stage, but often it is only the "good-bye" that is difficult.  For this reason, we encourage you to make "good-byes" short and reassuring.

We set up the rooms in a way that facilitates exploration and discovery through play.  A great deal of time is spent exploring, pushing, pulling, filling, dumping and touching. Two year olds feel secure in environments that are familiar and for this reason, you may see the same toys and equipment out for several weeks.  What we will do is present these familiar toys in different setups (e.g adding a set of wooden blocks to the cars and garage).

Twos love painting, splashing in the water table, housekeeping, singing and dancing at circle time.  Although play tends to be more solitary, they enjoy being in each other's company, playing side by side.  

We are still waiting for a few more family photos.  Children love to look at these pictures especially if they are missing mom or dad.  

Please encourage your child to walk up and down the stairs holding onto the railing when being brought to or leaving the preschool.

Check the white board outside the classroom for a synopsis of our day and please feel free to talk to us if you have any questions or concerns.

We look forward to an exciting year- a year of tremendous growth in confidence and abilities.  We hope that this first group experience will be an enjoyable and memorable one for both you and your child.

301 - Estelle & Susan

Welcome new and returning parents. This coming school year we will be doing lots of themes such as Bears as well as our usual seasonal and holiday themes.

For the next few weeks we will be getting use to the classroom routine and working on self help skills such as putting away snack, helping to clean up etc.

Some new things for the threes are that we have two circles; one at the start of class where we take attendance, sing The More We Get Together and talk about our art project for the day and the second circle is at the end of class where we talk about our theme through books, songs, props and felt rhymes and than sing our good bye song.

The children also get to have a music class once a week with Rachel and participate in the Christmas and Spring concerts.

We will also be talking about our main classroom rule which is No One Gets Hurt, a collective poster made by the children will be posted near our circle carpet.

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to talk to Susan or Estelle.

302 - Karen, Sousan, Brita

Welcome children and parents of 302 in the Treehouse room. The children are coming into class and exploring their new environment. We have put out puzzles, building blocks, play dough, easel with paint/crayons, a water table, a home corner with dolls, play food and plates, just to name a few items. 

Our music teacher Rachel came in to visit the children and sang ‘Shake your sillies out’. She also taught her ‘Hello’ song. We will be having music on Tuesdays.
Just some reminders about what we discussed from the first day.
-We are a peanut free school.
Image result for PEANUT FREE-Please call the office or let us know if your child is going to be absent.
-Label all containers and lunch bags
-We ask that you put your child’s snack in the cubby instead of leaving it in their back pack
-Pack extra clothing in your child's back pack
-Please take your child to the bathroom before class

If you have any questions or concerns we are always available to talk. If that day is particularly busy we can always arrange another time.

Can you believe a month has already passed!? It was a pleasure for us in the Treehouse room to get to know all the children and their families. Our gradual entry was very smooth and successful this year. The children seem happy to meet new friends and just as happy to say hello to their old friends.

Our children have been learning some new skills such as adjusting to the daily routine, lining up, sitting on the carpet during Circle Time, washing their hands before snack, cleaning up the toys, just to name a few. We are giving them the opportunity to practice these life skills so they become more confident and independent within the classroom. They are also learning their manners during play time, such as sharing toys, helping each other, and waiting their turn patiently for a chance to play with a toy.

This past month, we sang different songs and played games during the Circle Time to learn each others’ names and get to know each other. We also explored the beauty of Autumn by singing and exploring the different colours of leaves we found outside, which we also used as inspiration for art. We also tasted different kinds of apples harvested in our beautiful province of British Colombia.

During the month of October, we will be doing more festive activities related to Thanksgiving and Halloween while learning more about the Fall season. We are looking forward to our annual Halloween Party as well, so stay tuned for that! 
Happy autumn! J

401 - Karen & Rosie

Image result for HAPPY sunflower cartoon imageWelcome children and parents of 401 in the Sunflower room. We have had a great start to the beginning of the year. Our first full class has come and gone!

And wow! What a wonderful first month back at school! All of the children have reunited after summer break, finding new friendships and keeping old ones. We started off our month by having discussions about ourselves and the things that we like showing us that many of us had a lot in common. 

Image result for FAVOURITE ANIMAL CARTOONThe children talked about their favourite animals, and made very special drawings of them to show their classmates. The children were very proud of their drawings, and found confidence in themselves to talk about their favourite animal with one another sparking lots of different pretend play stories!

After getting to know one another better, we started to discuss friendships, treating each other well, and using our manners. To practice our manners the children made very colourful and fun paper bag puppets. We also made our No One Gets Hurt poster and put it up on the wall so we can always remember our most important classroom rule.

To introduce Johnny Appleseed, the children painted with apples and made prints. Together, we discovered who Johnny Appleseed was and why we sing his song before we eat everyday.

The children have loved the sunny days outside and find lots of joy running and laughing with their friends as we all start to feel the crisp fall air. As we get deeper into the season this month, we will be learning about Thanksgiving and Halloween.

Just some reminders about what we discussed the first day of class.
-we are a peanut-free school
-please call the office or let us know if your child is going to be absent 
-label all containers and lunch bags 
-we ask that you put your child's snack in the cubby instead of leaving it in his/her backpack 
-pack extra clothing in their backpacks 
-please take your child to the bathroom before class 

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask,  we are looking forward to a fantastic year! 

402 - Arsi & Danielle

Summer sure blew by fast and we are ready for another fun and exciting preschool year! This is the time of the year to get to know one another and learn the new expectations at school.

In the upcoming weeks, we will be focusing on our number one rule at preschool which is “NO ONE GETS HURT’, how to be a good friend with teamwork, and learning about ourselves and our families. We will be focusing on an author named Mem Fox and some of her books. Lots to look forward to!!!

We love when children use their imagination to play and have fun, however, we would like to remind the parents and the children that there are no pretend weapons or guns at preschool.

Below is the parent information handout sheet so please take a look for important reminders as the children begin their full days.
● 402 program runs from 9am-1pm Tuesdays & Thursdays in the Sunflower room and Fridays in the Rainbow room
● There will be cubbies set up outside the sunflower room for your child and in the rainbow room the cubbies are inside
the room where children may pick their own cubbies each Friday with their provided name tags
● St.Catherine’s preschool is a NUT FREE zone, even if our class may not have allergies we do share the room with
other children that may be allergic
● Upon arrival each morning, we do ask parents to please take your child to the bathroom in order for the teachers to be
on the floor for morning communication/questions with parents/nannies etc
● Since we are a longer day, there will be 2 opportunities for the children to eat - snack & lunch
● We do ask that you pack more food than less because we are a busy class and the children do get quite hungry
● Please pack a separate snack from lunch so your child will know which one is for each eating period
● We do ask parents to leave the snack out in their child’s cubby so they will have quick access to it
● Please label all containers and also cups/water bottles (we do not drink juice or milk at school)
● We do not use the microwave for children’s food however thermoses are fine
● Please provide extra clothes in their bags in case of accidents or water spills/paint etc
● We do ask all toys to stay at home, unless it’s a comfy toy/blanket, in which case must remain in their cubby because
we don’t want them to get lost or ripped
● If your child is going to be absent for holidays or is sick, please do let us know either by calling the office or telling
● If you have any questions or concerns, we are always available to talk. If that particular day is busy please feel free to
set up another day and we will discuss any concerns you may have
● This is a great class with lots of fun learning experiences however, as teachers we also like to suggest to parents as
the children get to know each other, to also set up playdates outside of school time. This allows children to make new
friends in a quieter setting where they may feel comfortable to be more social.

403 - Estelle & Sousan

Welcome new and returning parents. This year we have a class of threes and fours. We will be doing lots of fun themes this year and as we get to know each other, we would like some of their input as to what things they would like to explore and learn about.

Soon we will be starting to learn about the calendar and picking our Daily Leader and Leader’s Friend. The leader helps the teacher with the calendar and leads the line up when we go to the Gym or to wash our hands. The leader’s friend gets to follow in second. All of the children will get a few chances during the year in both roles. 

We also have a classroom mascot, a stuffed whale named Echo, which all the children will get a turn with one weekend. More details to follow. We will start this a little later in the year.

We hope to do many group and individual art and science projects this coming year.

We have a main rule in our class “No one gets hurt” and the children will make a collective poster which will be near our circle carpet.

The children have settled in nicely to the new school year.
First off we talked about our personal space and respecting other’s as well. To make this concrete for the children, we refer to it as a bubble. We drew a person with a bubble around them and discussed how we can say you are in my bubble etc. We are also working on using our words and telling our friends how we feel and if we don’t like something.
Next we introduced the meaning of our Johnny Appleseed grace song (that we use at snack) with a video. We also made apple prints, cutting the apple sideways and cross ways to show the star. Next we did some apple taste testing; we tried Granny Smith, Pink Lady, Gala and McIntosh. The favourites were Granny Smith and Pink Lady.

Our last week of September we started in on Fall. We did leaf rubbings, made a bracelet with fall colours and used eyedroppers to decorate fusion paper leaves. We also talked about the changing leaf colours and cooler temperature.

Please come and see us if you have any questions or concerns during the year.

MUSIC - Rachel

This month in music class we will be welcoming the children into the world of music, and welcoming music into the world of children! We will begin by reading a book titled Music Is For Everyone. We will sing Hello Songs and songs about Autumn, learn chants about apples and leaves, and of course do some dancing! We will also learn the special music words for "loud" and "quiet" and practice playing along on the drums. 


Welcome everyone to another exciting year at  St. Catherine’s.  I have enjoyed reconnecting with the families and meeting new ones.

Image result for fine motor skills clipartThe 2s will be developing their verbal, social and sharing skills.  
The 3s will be developing their fine motor skills (pincher grasp, using scissors and completing more advanced puzzles), their gross motor skills (riding bikes and climbing).  
The 4s will be getting ready for Kindergarten while developing their literacy skills (chants, rhymes and playing sequencing games) and numeracy skills (matching and sorting objects).  They will continue to learn problem solving and socialization through play.

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 Some things to work on at home would be walking holding hands when out in the neighbourhood and discuss with them why we hold hands with an adult; TO BE SAFE.  Also, allowing them to practice their stair climbing skills by holding onto a railing.  

Games help children retain important messages and boundaries.  Playing Stop & Go by letting them run in the park a little way and then saying, “Stop”.  They love repetition, so play this game often.   
Image result for circle time clipartThe 4s are encouraged to recognize their names or the letters in their names.  Circle Time is an important time of our day. This is a time for the group to come together with their peers and sing “Hello”.  We start off in the 2s with short fun circles, lots of visuals and songs.  Circle Time for the 3s is a little longer and there is more sharing of ideas.  These could last up to 10 minutes and the children are working on their listening skills.  By the time they are in the 4s the Circle Times are longer and more interactive and they are expected to be able to sit and listen to a story and respond to questions.   

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We are encouraging all the children to be as independent as they can with going up and down stairs, getting their coats on and hanging them up when they come back indoors.  They all get their snacks from their cubbies, open their containers and clean up afterwards.   Setting expectations and following through with those expectations is the foundation for a confident child.  

We have an open door policy so please feel free to talk with your child’s teachers and I am around if you have any questions for me.   Together we will smile, laugh and learn this year.

If you have any questions, concerns, comments or just want to chat, stop by the office for a visit!!

Sincerely, Tina Spencer, Director
St. Catherine's Childcare Society