Dear Stems families and friends-
Hello! Welcome to this week’s blog. It was another great and busy week in the Stems room! During a couple of days this week, a couple of people (potential Dot-to-Dot future employees) came to interact and observe the Stems while checking out their space! We also worked on little surprise holiday gifts to send home next week that the Stems enjoyed working hard and spending time on. This week, we also celebrated a Birthday and celebrated one of our Stems as she became a big sister! On Thursday evening, we also had parent-connection meeting #3 where the parents were invited to see what their children were engaged in as well as their current interests. Although this time of year can be busy for all, we want to thank the parents who were able to take an hour out of their day and spend time celebrating the children. For the parents who were unable to make it, we hope that you will be able to make it to the next parent-connection meeting!
In this week’s blog, we will cover the following-
This week in the fixing area, we added some new tools for the Stems to explore with. We also added some more of the images of a stereo for the Stems to utilize and reference while fixing. While fixing, we have continued to observe the Stems remove parts and pieces out of the machines with the continued objective of ‘fixing’ the machines in their transformation play. In terms of the images that we printed out, we observed a lot of the continued interest in literacy be integrated into the transformation play and fixing with the Stems writing, drawing, and mark-making on the images. Some of the images we laminated for the Stems to use dry-erase marker on, while for others, we left unlaminated to observe how the Stems would use them.
Along with the needle-nose pliers that were in the fixing area, we introduced new flat-headed pliers this week! Per usual, we completed a risk-assesment on the tools to enure that the Stems were comfortable with using them as well as understood how to use them safely and properly.
The incorporation of literacy has continued to be present in multiple areas of the classroom. To support this interest, we brought in gel pens as well as dry erase markers for the Stems to use. The dry-erase markers were a hit on the light table as it provided them a different medium for them to explore writing on. As mentioned above, the Stems also used the dry-erase markers to write and draw on the laminated images of the printer.
It was interesting to observe the Stems using the new gel pens as instead of writing, the Stems began drawing with them- drawing fine details and images and then cutting them out. However, before the gel pens were brought out, many of the Stems used the colored pens that we had present to write with. When asked as to what drew them to the gel pens vs. the colored pens, the Stems replied that the gel pens,
“they’re light” and “a little bit shiny.”
In reference to what the dots wanted to add to the letter regarding his/her interests-
“Building and working.” -Hank
“Cutting, stapling, and coloring Power Rangers.” -Cashton and Daxton
“Making beautiful drawings for mommy.” -Aditi
“We’re making cupcakes with Jack.” -Madison
“Me and Madison making cupcakes and ice-cubes outside, with square blocks.” -Annabel
“Fixing music-er, me, Phoebe, Aditi hard work.” -Smayana
“Drawing rainbows.” -Amelia
“Aditi helped me draw Elsa.” -Sienna
“Block area. Playing blocks with Hank.” -Anvi
“We were drawing a big hotel on the light table.” -Madison
“Playing family with Madison. I’m the baby.” -Eden
With the continued interest in transferring of materials, we wanted to provide the Stems with a variety of new materials and tools to utilize as well as provide a different perspective while utilizing them. This week, we added straws with wide bases, sectioned containers, strainers, and small cups to the sand in the sensory bin. These materials were a big hit amongst the Stems! Some of the tools were utilized in a different way than what they had been designed to do, for example- a ledge of a strainer was used to collect/gather sand rather than have sand sift or flow through the holes and the straws were used to scoop up sand and transfer it vs. used to draw matter through the tube.
As mentioned in one of the above photos, we have observed and heard a lot of “pretend that…” and “pretend that..” in various areas of exploration. Hearing these comments has intrigued us! We wonder how the children see reality vs. pretend and how they connect! This is something that we would like to dig deeper into.
And to end this blog, Anvi’s mother and grandfather brought in fruit one day for the Stems to enjoy and help celebrate Anvi’s birthday with!
Once again, thank you for joining us on this week’s journey! Your continued interest and support in your child’s learning and discovery is inspiring and appreciated.
To you families who will be traveling for the holidays, we wish you safe travels! And to all- we wish you the happiest of holidays, enjoy this special time with your loved ones.
Have a wonderful and safe weekend-
Hugs, The Stems Educators