Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Fun, Fun, Fun

Having fun at daycare today!! We are enjoying the beautiful, hot weather and taking our work outdoors. We filled the pools, buckets & sensory tables and brought the art table outside and had some artsy fun!! We had paint and brushes for everyone, we created Red, White & Blue Masterpieces!! We added some glitter and made"fire work" shows on paper... the kids thought that was great fun. We talked about fire works and the sound of them going off. All but 2 yr old S remember fire works from last year... a lot was discussed during our work today.

Making a fun mess!!

Hum... this is a good color for me...

Very serious work... they talked about mixing the colors together and what colors they made.

Some chose not to mix colors... but Red, White & Blue prevail

How the colors mixed for one of our Artist's!!

We also had some serious sea shell washing going on. S was very intent in having her "pet" snake help her today. (Don't know if you can see it there in her left hand... pinky)

Taking a break from the hot weather and doing some swingin inside... the best money I ever spent. Our swing is used often everyday... for the fun of it, for quiet time alone, an island for pretend friends, or just good ol' swingin!!

2 little friends learning to share, discussing "things", taking turns, and making friendships...
I love my job :)

Fine Motor and scissor skills... making a 4th of July Star Windsock
We are off to a great week and I look forward to ending it with our Trip to The Lazy 5 Ranch and 4th of July picnic with the animals...

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Tot School: Week in Review

I have been having some really lazy summer tot days here this past week. I have been trying to get the playroom redone, theme's and crafts out for the making, and stories and songs going for the little ones. I have tried to make the weeks in the summer more fun and crafty rather than academic oriented. The kids love the open ended play and we have been sharpening up our problem solving skills and our being a good friend skills. So this week, we did a lot of swimming, playing in the playroom and when it was cool enough outside in the yard. We added buckets of water... an idea I got from Annie at Annie's Alphabet Childcare blog... you can find her blog here. I love her set up and WOW!!! what she does with the children in her care. It is a childcare setting, and I don't know if she does Tot School consciously, but I love her site. Anyway, below you will find a small example of things we did this past week...

Oh Yeah... We LOVE shaving cream play...

Always time for a quick dip in pool. R is getting better and better at swimming each time we go...

Drawing with crayons, markers, colored pencils and chalk is always a nice quiet time activity.

This week was block building week... the kids (of all ages) seemed to gravitate to these large cardboard blocks all week. The Big kids had fun building towers for the Tots to knock down. We also built a "town" where the Tot's were the wrecking balls (monsters) and would come through and destroy the town. A very POPULAR activity.

If you get a chance and want to see more Tot School Happenings... just head over to Tot School

Saturday, June 27, 2009

What Have We Been Doing??

The week is finally over and what did we do?? I tip-toed my way through organizing the playroom and getting things ready for the summer kids... I didn't do a good job of it. My mind has been mush lately. I have been lurking on some blogs... that if you get a chance you should take a look at Teaching 2 & 3 yr olds and Annie's Alphabet Home Childcare. They are great sites. They have both given me some really great ideas and I want to implement them so badly!! I just haven't been able to wrap myself around it yet.
Tomorrow I am going to finish the window treatments, get that darn bulletin board up (I went to the Teacher Store and purchased the borders: yeah!!) and get the supplies out on the shelves and on the tables for the week. I spend a lot of time with the kids each day, but this summer we haven't incorporated the music, dance, craft or gardening aspect of my summer programs. So I have decided that I must change it this week... I think tomorrow I will come up with a theme for the week... Well that was easy since 4th of July is next Saturday... and I will complete that theme for the week. Not sure what yet, but I will let you tomorrow!!
I feel better... even when no one reads my blog I think that just getting it down on "paper" making it real helps me to focus and get going... I am getting excited. I think we will make the firecracker craft I found on some one's blog... just have to go look for it and get the instructions. We will have a picnic on Friday. I think the kids will love to do some cooking this week... hopefully the weather isn't to hot and we can spend some time outdoors, maybe go on a nature hike at the local park... see the idea's are flowing now. Good... now on to those curtains.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy

We have had a little family crisis over here at Kozy Kids... I wish I could say more, but not really ready yet. I just hope it all works out.
We will be hopefully finishing the daycare overhaul this weekend. I want to get everything back where it belongs, on shelves, bulletin board back up, and activities the kids can get out on their own. I just know that if I can get that done I won't be so discombobulated from what is going on outside the daycare life.
I work so good on my schedule and summer always gives me that ability to do so much more FUN, CRAFTY, MESSY activities... but I always have it ready by now. I am just so out there. Well... I will get it done. Next week will be so much better.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Getting ready for the summer

I have decided to dedicate this Blog to my Family Home Daycare Business!!

Kozy Kids Family Daycare

A little about me... I am a 39 yr old Mom, Wife, Daycare Provider!! I love what I do!! I started out in the Fall of 2007 with 1 child. I quickly added another... but thought that was enough. I added some toys to the front room, a few crafts and "preschool" songs and lessons... and the rest is history. One parent told another, who told another and I am now the proud Provider to 8 full time and 2 part time children. I have hired a co-teacher to help me out with the Preschool part of our day and with our little one... who will be 1 next week... How time flies!!!

I can't believe that I went from this little... "I'll watch some kids to play with Ry" to this full fledged Preschool/Daycare Business. I am loving it.

I would love to share our photo's from this past year, but I have not asked permission from some of the Parents to show their children on the blog. So hopefully when most of them come back for the fall we will get that permission and be off and running.

We decided the Playroom needed to be painted and overhauled for the summer... so that is what we did below... we had a Great time doing it and I think the kids will be very excited. We are still working on our "messy" room in the sunroom, and I will post photos as soon as I get that done. I am excited to make the space more kid friendly, and they can have more independence in getting their material and doing their work. I found the web/blog from Annie Look over at Annie's Alphabet Home Childcare.... and WOW!!! If you want inspiration as a Childcare Provider or anyone who works with small children... That is where you should go!! I got so pumped just looking at her space and what "her kids" do all day!! They are learning, entertained, busy, happy, messy, quiet, moving, & safe!! You can just see how much pride she takes in her business and she has the passion not all childcare providers have. A passion for nurturing the child in children... letting kids be kids and have fun. So, if you want some inspiration jump over there and take a look. You can find the shortcut under my blog list.

Here is a picture of us trying to get everything picked up, after the last day for my kids who's parents are teachers. So those kids won't be here to much for the summer. I will miss them. I wrote about that at my other blog... A Boys Life 4 Me. If you'd like to read about that.

Here is Beth... my co-teacher... trying to keep things organized. She is the organized one and I am the one who makes her absolutely CRAZY!!! I take things out to use them and forget to put them back... I am a spur of the moment kind of teacher and if the kids look like they may want to take a lesson another way than I had planned... I run with it. I quickly get things out for them to use and in the process make a mess. Beth is there is keep me on track and make sure I pick up things at the end of the day. We balance each other out I think... I bring out her inner child and she brings out my inner Mom :)

Here is our messy computer area. I am not a huge computer advocate for the 1 to 5 yr old range so it kinda collects dust unless an after-schooler asks to play a game on it. Then we dust it off and hope it will work. We store a lot of our Montessori Manipulative's under there in those boxes. I also put our paint, new curtains, and curtain rods under there until we found time to get this overhaul under way.

Here is the wood floor part of the playroom under "construction." We usually do a lot of our messy work there during the school year. We are rethinking that for the summer. Maybe moving the messy stuff to the sunroom... we'll see.

Here Ry is helping with the painting of the room. Ry is my 4 yr old... the reason I started this adventure in the first place :) He really loved helping us, it made the room more of his own I think.

Here Em (Beth's 4 yr old) is also helping. As you can see we picked a yellow for the walls. I was a little afraid at first, but when it was all done it wasn't a big Banana like I thought it would be. I was really worried at first though. I am glad it came out as nice as it did.

Here is a picture of it after we finished and put the summer furniture in.. We added the Kangaroo Climber, the trampoline, and a car table. We have always had the swing and we put the Baby Play area in on the little rug off to the side.

Here is a shot of our entryway... we have some cubbies I made off to the side when you walk in and I downsized the computer table so it won't take up so much room. Hopefully I won't let it get so cluttered now :)
Here some of the kids are playing in the new room. They really love the swing and slide. Although they did play with the car table quite a bit too...
Behind T on the swing you can see the brown shelf and white cabinets... we plan on putting our bulletin board back up there. We want to add another cabinet on top of the ones you see (there is another on the right hand side also) and put the bulletin board in between.
Here is C in front of the car table... It's not a huge room, but it seems to fit us all nicely.
Here is the Baby Play Area... always a hit... we use Beanie Baby Kitty's a lot instead of babies though.

So, I think that is it so far except for the stuff on the walls... we need to put up our shelves and organizational stuff. We also need to get some of our Art Work back up there. I am excited to get going on the sunroom. T can't wait to help too, she loves crafts and painting so she want to get it done as soon as possible so she can begin.
We spend a lot of our time at our community pool in the sub-division during the summer. Though we have begun the overhaul of the backyard sometimes it is just to hot here in NC to play out there in the afternoon. We try to play out there in the early mornings so avoid the hottest part of the day. But in preparation for our time out there, we added mulch under the climbing structure & swings, added a pretty neat sandbox, and some stumps to climb on. Annie gave me some great summer fun ideas to try with the kids and we will soon be adding some 2 x 4's cut up, and some nice planks of wood to build with. I think they will be great additions to the yard. And provide hours of fun for all the kids!!