Monday, November 30, 2009

Nice to be Back

What a wonderful weekend... lots of food, family and fun!! I missed my routine and am happy to be back. We spent some time this morning outside before the rain came. It was nice to run, dig and especially swing!!

We love digging... we have a wonderful sandbox to dig in. Yes, it has some twigs, leaves and acorns in it, but that's OK, right? No, it is so much more fun to dig in the dirt anywhere else. It doesn't matter someone (probably one of these 2) will come running along, chasing a friend or pushing a dump truck, and trip and fall... nope, it doesn't matter :) I think the sheer energy it takes to dig a hole in this hard NC clay is what matters. Getting their shovels, buckets and dump trucks out to begin their "dig," it is hard and they love the "work" of it. There is a lot of discussion of how to best go about starting, how large it should be or when to stop. I love watching them.
We will begin our Holiday Month tomorrow. I like to delve into Holiday's Around the World this week, and then narrow it down to Christmas. We talk about what we think the meaning of Christmas is and how our families celebrate. We then have our Holiday Program before the Christmas Break from school. It is a small thing, we have our families come, do some songs or little play, and then we watch a DVD of our first months of daycare while we eat some snacks (proudly prepared by the kids... YUM!!). So, I need to get started on those songs and props!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Happy Thanksgiving Kozy Kids!!!

We have so much to be Thankful for!! I am thankful for my family, my Kozy Kids, my health, my ability to love what I do, the Families that have stuck with me through a rough time, and for all the wonderful moments that happen in my life everyday!!

Thank You! Thank You!! Thank You!!!

Friday, November 20, 2009


Today we went to the playground. Our playground isn't huge, it has some climbing structures and some newly installed swings... Oh how we love swings. The kids are beginning to get the hang of swings. The skills necessary to get on, get them moving, jumping off, and watching for other kids in front of and behind them. I wish I had some pictures of the kids on the swings today, you see the swings in my yard are nice and low and perfect for the kids to get on and off on their own. They can also lie on their bellies and pretend to fly. Not so with the swings at the playground.

The swings at the park are so high off the ground you would think they were designed for teenagers, not young children or even young school aged kids!! Yet today I saw a determination that only a preschooler can exhibit!! I have a strict policy that if you can't get up on a piece of equipment by yourself, then you probably can't get off either... so they can only go as far as their bodies can take them. This is to prevent falls or a child using a piece of equipment that is beyond their skill level, and yes a little bit of selfish reasoning that I won't have to get a child up or down a million gazillion times (but really that is just a small part).

Anyway... the kids all went over to the swings and began trying to get up on those swings. No one asked me to help, and only 1 child got on themselves. He got down and instructed the other kids on how to do it, and even helped a few try to "jump" on. Another child got on too and was very excited. Some of the others just decided it wasn't that important today to get up and ran to the climbing structures and began a game of tag. However, we had 1 little girl who tried and tried and tried to get up on that swing. She asked friends for pointers, she tried to pull herself up, she tried getting on her stomach and bringing up her knees, for about 10 minutes she struggled to get up on that swing before she got so frustrated she started to cry. Her friend came over and tried to help her again, she was invited by others to play tag... she was having none of it. She wanted to get on that swing. Her Mom finally went over and helped her on the swing... showing her how to put her hands and pull herself up... she was happy to be on the swing, but you could see that she wanted to get on that swing by herself. It was a mixed pleasure. And because of it she only lasted on that swing for about 2 minutes... huh.

Is there a time to intervene?? Her Mom asked if she could show her some pointers, she said yes. But in the end was it as gratifying to her?? I do believe that when we go to that playground again she will have the same determination, if not more, to get on that swing herself. I can't wait to see the look on her face when it happens!!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Busy Morning

Wednesday Morning seemed to be a busy one... we had out lots of water play (since it was raining outside), we went through the tunnel, built with blocks, used our Sand Studio, made Head Bands, and talked Turkey. We had a lot of fun exploring how all our friends celebrated Thanksgiving.

Our Sand Studio is a big hit!! I am glad I made the purchase. I kept going back and forth about the price, but the kids really love it and get a lot of use out of it. We use it for anything they want... playing in the sand, tracing letters, making words (hence the letters in the background) and using the templates to make shapes.
I think the favorite though is being able to quietly (alone or with a friend) play with the little people or animals.

Water play is my favorite. We try to get water out everyday. We have had a baby washing station, just water in the sensory table, sponging tray work, washing the table or clothing tray work, the list can go on and on!! Water has so many possibilities and the kids just kind of lose themselves in what they are doing...

This happens to be a favorite!! We don't even have the boats anymore, but they use cars, motorcycles or little people... doesn't matter. There is a path to follow and they love to follow it :)

The kids have really been into their Monster Trucks lately and we have had this type of play going on from early in the morning, until they have to go home. They found out last week that if they moved the carpet around they would get hills, mountains, and ramps!! What Fun!!! So, we tell the other kids to be careful where you walk... we don't want anyone falling over!!!

We had a friend make up some feathers on her die-cut machine!! We used them to make our headdresses. We talked about Thanksgiving and the Native Americans that helped the Pilgrims when they came to America. We then extended the conversation to how WE help our families during Thanksgiving and how we can help them everyday!!

How do you help your family during Thanksgiving Time?
B: I make the food that my Mom makes. My Dad likes to eat it.
L: I go to my Mimi's house, Nana's house, and I do all the work. My Mom drives and my brother plays. My Dad is playing with my brother.
S: We eat and I help.
R: I don't like to help. I want to play games.
Those are some of the great responses I got. I love to listen to their thought process and see what comes out. We started Show-n-Tell Friday's and the kids can either talk about what ever they want, or show a toy and tell about that. I ask questions and they answer them so far, but every once in a while we will get one child who will go on and on about what ever it is they are telling us about. I love it. It gives them a chance to talk in front of the group... a skill it is never to early to start.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Turkey Fun

I found my cord!!! Yeah!! Where was it?? I put it upstairs with my computer cool down thingy, and totally forgot about it. So, my boys are off the hook this time :) I will have to upload some of the more fun photos for some other posts.
Today I want to talk Turkey... We have been talking about Thanksgiving, the meaning of Thanksgiving, what we are Thankful for, and so on... We made a placemat yesterday... and so today we decided to go ahead and make the Turkey. It was very cute to watch the kids work and listen to them talk about eating turkey, why Turkey's have feet, and why should we color their feathers. Here are our Turkey's and the kids are so proud of them they wouldn't even let me keep them for the bulletin board.

Have a Great Day!!!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Monday Fun

ARGH!!! I can't find my wire for my camera!!!! I cleaned up the area that I keep it in and now of course I can't find it. I know I set it somewhere the kids couldn't get to it and now I can't remember where that place might be. I looked everywhere and still nothing!! I even got out the memory card thingy that should work... but tonight... NOPE!! So I am sorry that I can't post the pictures of us working today.

We did do a Hand Print Turkey Placemat, lots of crazy gluing, painting & scissor art, the great Do A Dot daubers, and sang some fun, silly Turkey songs. We also got to play outside in the beautiful 70 degree weather!!! The mud, sand and stray buckets of water definitely added to the fun.

Hopefully I will find that darn wire so I can download the pictures...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Having Fun with Curriculum

I have been thinking about why I do what I do... I don't mean why am I a Family Daycare Provider, but why do I use the curriculum I do. I have a degree in Elementary Education, but have gravitated to Early Childhood Ed for as long as I can remember. So I guess I learned that I should have certain activities set up for the kids, why they should be exposed to certain things, etc... but I don't know. It still seems second nature to me that my kids should be able to play with play doh anytime they want (at the appropriate place, of course), have paint and crayons to experiment with, blocks of all sorts of shapes, sizes and textures, water to splash, logs to jump from, well you get it :)
I am finding out that not everyone thinks like that. Some providers don't want the mess, or the noise. It's not just in homes, I visited a preschool classroom where there was a sand table and the teacher laughed and said, "No, that's a book shelf!! Way to messy as a sensory table" Of course I decided that I would pursue the Daycare License instead of putting my son in that class. I wanted to provide for my children as well as others those experiences. So, each day I come up with activities that they can excel at. I follow a lot of different curriculum's, I love the blogs I read because there are so many wonderful people out there providing such unbelievable experiences for the kids in their care, that I get side tracked and have to do what they did :)
So I can't just follow 1 curriculum, I have to be flexible and be able to use whatever seems best at that moment.
As you can see below, we are really into blocks lately. Right now we are loving making ramps, towns, hills, and buildings for our Monster Trucks to go over, under, and through (at high speed and noise!!) I am glad I have a center based set up, this way they can move about the room and do what they feel their body is ready for that day.
We are also into reading. I have found some great emergent reader books that you can print from Hubbards Cupboard( that the kids really love. I put the sentences on sentence strips and in our pocket chart (Target $1...Yeah) and the kids use the pointer (lots & lots of fun with that) and read it whenever they want. We go over it each morning at circle time and they read with me and then by themselves. They are very simple and they memorize it quickly, but oh the looks on their faces the first time they "read" it on their own... PRICELESS!!!

My favorite picture.... We came in from the yard to find Shea with this trash can lid around her neck... We thought it was very funny and had a great time wondering what could have been in that trash can!! Lucky Shea!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day and Rain

Thank you Veterans... and every Soldier out there who fights everyday for my freedom!! Thank You!!

It's a rainy day here, the kids are off of school and the house is pretty quiet... I'm not used to quiet. My littlest one and I spent the day reading, singing, using toys she doesn't normally use when the house is busy, and having fun making the big boys crazy.
I used this time to swap out a lot of the older trays and more boring unused toys. I set the kitchen up a little different, shooed the dogs away from the wooden Melissa & Doug toys (they love to chew my most expensive toys!!) and actually looked at my November Lesson Plans. I am looking to find some home daycare providers that use lesson plans and have a more structured set-up for their kids. It seems that my days flow so much better when I have it planned out and we are singing, doing circle time and calendar, & moving from center to center. I don't know how people go through the whole day without a plan. Without the excitement of the Good Morning Song, or the Weather Song... that smell of Play doh (homemade or not) on a rainy day... It has to be so boring if you don't structure your day... that interaction with the kids really makes my day.

We will be starting our Thanksgiving Unit next week. I am looking forward to the next two months. So much to do and learn. The Songs alone!!! Anyone with any great, off beat ideas... I'd love to hear them and try them... I only have 5 or so kids so we can do and try just about everything... even though we are in my home... as long as it doesn't require a whole lot of space, I don't care about mess!! I actually Love Mess!!! Mess = Happiness/Fun!! Kids love Mess!! Mess is a whole nother post!! I stray!! Sorry...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


It has been a few weeks since I have written. I have been spending my time wondering... Being a Family Home Child Care Provider is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world. I get goosebumps when one of the kids climb the ladder and look back at me with that huge smile... saying "Look at Me!! I DID IT!!!" I live for the moment when the littlest of the kids snuggles in my shoulder and tucks her arms under her and rests her head with a little sigh. How about the security that one of them feels every morning knowing that her transfer will be the same hug that she has received almost everyday since she started. Or what about the time a child comes in for the first time without crying and never cries again... that is a moment. The smile from a parent who know that their child will be okay as soon as they leave, or I will give the same seriousness to a hurt boo boo or story that they will. This is why I became a Family Home Child Care Provider. The passion I feel towards giving families a place to feel secure with, trusting, content... that is my business. It is personal, it is feeling, it is growing... it isn't get up, go to work, do my work and go home. All the paperwork, all the hoops we jump through, all the regulations... it can seem like a business, but I won't let it be. It is my job. I will help make these little people into the big people they will become. Even if they forget ME as a person as they grow, my hugs, my structure, my love will always be there. It may come out in a way they pronounce a word or a few gestures they make... it will be from the time they were here, in my home, with me. I Love My Job!! It Is Worth It!!! All Of It!!!

Monday, November 2, 2009


tRicK or TrEAt
Out local Main Street has a Trick or Treat day, this year the day before Halloween. It was a lot of fun for the kids to get ready for the real thing the next day. I give the businesses a lot of credit for taking time out of their day and spending all that money on candy for all these children. They really had a great time.

We got to see a lot of our friends and neighbors and the local ice cream shop even gave away free ice cream until 5pm. What a great idea!! What a GREAT day!!!