Early Childhood Science

Posted: December 12th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: News, Science | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »


Five Creative and Fun Ways to Get Children’s Attention

Posted: September 4th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: News, Susan's Blog | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »
1191196_students__3When you’re working with a group of children it can be a challenge to get their attention without sounding like a drill sergeant. Leah Davies M.Ed. has collected 25 great ideas that classroom teachers can use that are not only effective but fun! Here are the first 5:


 1. Hold up your hand and say, “Give Me Five.” The children put their hands in the air and shout “five!” As they count down to one, they get progressively quieter until “one” is said in a whisper. Or, after saying, “Give me five,” everyone puts their hand in the air and counts loudly using their fingers from 1 to 5.


2. Teach the children that the five fingers on their right hand stand for the five things they must do when you hold up your hand. Say, “Give me five,” and wait until all the children hold up their hand. Then lead them in saying the five things together.
  1. Eyes — look
  2. Ears — listen
  3. Mouth — closed
  4. Hands — still
  5. Feet — quiet

Later when you say, “Give me five,” the children are to think of these five things and hold up their hand to show they are ready to listen.

3. Clap or tap in a pattern, for example, clap slowly twice and then clap fast three times. The students are to stop what they are doing and repeat the pattern. If necessary, do it again until all children have responded and are quiet. You may want to vary the pattern.

4. Shake a shaker, touch a wind chime, ring a bell, play quiet music or use any kind of sound maker as a signal for students to be attentive.

5. Raise your hand and stand still until the students are quiet. Or, raise your right hand and put the index finger of your left hand on your lips. The children are to do the same. Another idea is to hold up three fingers which is a silent signal for “Stop, look, listen.” Then wait until all the children have their three fingers up and are quiet.

Susan A. Vessels
Executive Director
Community Coordinated Child Care (4-C)

Weighted Items Help Children Calm Down

Posted: August 23rd, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Child Care Providers, News, Parent Blog | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Children sometimes need help calming down for many reasons.

 Sometimes the body is not able to calm down on its own.  For example:

  • a child can’t sit still in school
  •  the tags/rough fabric of their uniform is rubbing against their skin

Here are other reasons why a child could be acting out.

  • The Child has ADHD/ADD characteristics
  • The Child has sensory issues: over-stimulated/under-stimulated by their environment
  • The Child is affected by a recent move, going back to school or other family challenges

What can you do to help?

Often the simple act of adding weight/pressure might help the child calm down. The extra weight provides deep-pressure touch and calming input to the nervous system.


weighted item

Resources to make or buy weighted items.



Instructions to make a Weighted Lap Snake

 This is an easy way to try the concept and to see how the child responds.

Make one or more snakes and introduce them when the child is calm and happy. Place a snake in the child’s lap or drape it over his shoulders. Observe whether the child is less restless. Some parents/ teachers use the weighted snakes when they cannot stay right beside the child.

Instructions for sewing the Lap Snake:

  1. Use a long tube socks, one for each “snake.” You can also use thick tights or stockings and cut them off about 18” from the toe. Serge or whipstitch the cut edges.
  2. Fill each sock with four cups of rice or other similar pellets like pinto beans or split peas.
  3. Close the end of the tube sock by hand or machine, sewing the opening with small, sturdy stitches or use a rubber band.
  4. If desired, draw a simple face on the sewn side of the sock, making the seam the “mouth.”


 Gina Deveary

 4-C Early interventionist/Instructor


What kid doesn’t love building and using hideouts?

Posted: May 14th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Child Care Providers, News, Susan's Blog | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

This blog from Not Just Cute is a great resource for ready made or homemade tents, forts and hideouts. Click here to check it out.


Fabulous Fine Motor Play

Posted: April 10th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Child Care Providers, News, Susan's Blog | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

If given half a chance kids take care of their need to move their bodies and develop those gross motor skills needed to walk, run, jump, etc. But the fine motor skills are often lacking when kids get to school. As a result, holding a pencil, buttoning their coat, tying shoes can be difficult for them.

That’s why I was happy to see the terrific list of fine motor skill builders at www.handsonaswegrow.com . All of the activities use common household items to encourage little ones to use those fingers, hands, and eyes in a coordinated manner. Check it out.

Susan A. Vessels
Executive Director


Posted: February 7th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Child Care Providers, News, Science | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Check out this newsletter from The Louisville Science Center on fun science activities to do together! 

Early Childhood Newsletter 3

100 days of School

Posted: January 26th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Child Care Providers, News, Pat's Blog | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »

In most school systems, the 100th day of school occurs during January. This can be a reason to celebrate for teachers and children alike. It’s fairly common to think of January being the beginning of the end of the school year. Some children and teachers even begin counting how many days left. So, when you make snowflakes for an art activity, why not add 100th activities, as well. Kids can use cheerios to glue on papers, make funny looking faces out of the number 100 by adding hair, glasses, nose, mouth. Have each child bring in a picture of their favorite thing and see if they can make them add up to 100. Counting beads is a good activity and making necklaces with 100 Cheerios, Fruit Loops, pieces of pasta helps develop fine motor skills. You may have many, many more ways to celebrate the 100th day of the school year. Just remember to have fun! Children learn by playing!!


Growing Creative Thinkers

Posted: April 26th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: News, Science | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

Children thrive in an open-ended environment, one in which they can explore how the world works and how to express their ideas through drawing, creating art, movement, music, writing, graphing, and playing. Subtle shifts in your daily routine can create an environment where experimentation happens, where questions can be asked and answers given without worrying about “getting it right”, and where adults and children discover the learning together. 
Visit our blog to find tips and resources from the early childhood specialists on staff. Learn about simple, fun, inexpensive activity ideas that bring the kind of play and exploration that leads to good problem solving and creative thinking. Share what is happening in your classroom, home or center and find out about ongoing projects in our community.                                                                                                                                    

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