September 14, 2015
In This Issue
Early Childhood Families,

We are excited to offer you a monthly newsletter with information about upcoming events and other news at the Early Childhood Center. The EC Family Newsletter will be electronically distributed during the first week of every month.
News from Miss Misty

The 2015-2016 school year is off to a great start! 

As you read this month's newsletter, we want to draw your attention to a few items. We will have monthly information provided to you by our school nurse, speech/language pathologists, and motor therapists.  We hope this information will be informational to you in watching your child develop and learn.  We will have information regarding our curriculum and a spotlight on developmental stages for preschoolers.  

We would also like to invite all parents to join us throughout the year to volunteer in your child's classroom. Starting the second quarter, we will have times available for parents to volunteer in the classroom to read a story. Our goal is for every child to have a parent, guardian, or other important family member join us as a guest mystery reader at some point in the school year. 

At the Early Childhood Center, our hope is to create a positive learning environment for all our students. Please don't hesitate to contact me with questions or concerns, and always feel free to let us know your successes as well!   or   417-735-3736

Thank you,
Miss Misty

Our Early Childhood Center follows the High/Scope Curriculum for all classes. The High/Scope Curriculum approach to education is called "child-initiated learning." We provide children with a wide variety of materials (books, toys, art supplies, equipment, and household objects) and plan experiences that build on their interests and expand their learning. We also encourage their early development by observing, supporting, and extending what they do. We call this "intentional teaching."
We plan experiences for children that encourage independent thinking, initiative (the ability to make and then follow through on a plan), and creativity. Young children's capabilities develop quickly when they can act on their own ideas, use materials freely, and exercise their imaginations. We also encourage curiosity, decision making, cooperation, persistence (staying with their ideas), and problem solving.
Children also become familiar with basic ideas in reading and writing, math and science, and other areas that prepare them for starting school. Over time, they develop the necessary knowledge and skills they will carry into their later school years and into adulthood.

High/Scope Goals:
  • To learn through active involvement with people, materials, events, and ideas.
  • To become independent, responsible,and confident - ready for school and ready for life.
  • To learn to plan many of their own activities,carry them out, and talk with other children and their teachers about what they have done and what they have learned.
  • To learn to express their feelings and get along with others in rewarding relationships.
  • To gain knowledge and skills in important content areas including approaches to learning; social and emotional development;physical development and health;language, literacy, and communication;mathematics; creative arts; science and technology; and social studies.
Developmental Stages Spotlight

Developmental Stages of Block Play

Building with blocks stimulates your child's imagination when he/she tries an idea to see if it turns out the way he/she thought it would.  Children learn cognitive, language, social-emotional, and motor/sensory skills through block play.  There are 9 stages of block play we expect children from age 3 through Kindergarten to proceed through.

Click on the following link to view the 9 stages: 
Tips from Nurse Cindy

Tips to Help Children Develop Healthy Habits - American Heart Association
  • Get the whole family moving - Plan times for everyone to get moving together. Take walks, ride bikes, go swimming, garden, or just play hide-and-seek outside. Everyone will benefit from the exercise and the time together.
  • Encourage physical activities that they'll really enjoy - Every child is unique. Let your child experiment with different activities until they find something that they really love doing. They'll stick with it longer if they love it.
  •  Make dinnertime a family time - When everyone sits down together to eat, there's less chance of eating the wrong foods or snacking too much. Get your kids involved in cooking and planning meals.
  •  Make a game of reading food labels - The whole family will learn what's good for their health and be more conscious of what they eat. It's a habit that helps change behavior for a lifetime.
I hope everyone is settling into their new schedules and routines. I can be reached at (417) 735-3742 if you have any questions or concerns.   
Cindy Thompson RN, BSN
Motor Development

Using Two Hands Together

Using two hands together is an important developmental motor skill.  It is also called bilateral coordination and is defined as using both sides of the body for the same or a different action.  Children should be able to perform tasks using two hands doing different actions around 3 years of age.  
Some fun activities to promote this motor skill include: finger painting, throwing and catching a beach ball, tearing paper, wringing out sponges, opening/ closing jar lids, push together pop beads, practice buttoning, zipping, snaps and lacing, seal and unseal Ziploc bags, stringing beads/pasta, and popping bubbles with two hands. 
Speech and Language

What is the difference between Speech and Language?

Speech is the physical process of forming words; language is what speech creates-the output or product.  Speech refers to the sounds that come our of our mouth and take shape in the form of words.  Language is what we speak, write, read, and understand.  Language is also communicating through gestures (body language or sign language).  There are two distinct areas of language: receptive (what we hear and understand from others' speech or gestures) and expressive (the words we use to create messages others will understand).  
If your child is having difficulty developing speech and/or language skills, it is possible that he/she may also have weak listening skills, usually attributed to an inability to hear well.  Hearing screenings are conducted if any speech and/or language concerns are notice to rule out any hearing deficits.  Strong listening skills are necessary in order to receive and develop sounds for speech and develop language for communication.
Building Improvement Plan

The Early Childhood Leadership team developed goals for our Building School Improvement Plan based upon each age group/class option that reflects the foundational skills needed for readiness. The team selected three goals; one addressing literacy, one for numeracy, and one for social interaction skills for the 2015-16 school year. The literacy and social interaction goals were selected based upon community feedback indicating these two skills are the top two the community wanted the students to have obtained by the end of preschool. Teachers are currently collecting anecdotal data for the three goal areas. The baseline for those goals will follow after our first quarter assessment.  
Mark Your Calendar
  • Sept. 18-     Grandparents' Night                                                   5:00-5:45pm Morning Classes; 6:00-6;45pm Afternoon Classes
  • Sept. 24-     Mum Pickup  3:45-5:00pm
  • Oct. 5 & 6-  Republic Library Visits
  • Oct. 21-      Field Trip to Pickin' Patch (MWF, M-Th, M-F classes)
Thank you for taking time to check out our building updates this month. Please contact us with any questions, or if we can help you in any way.