. Sweet sentiments and chocolates in the air. Students exchanged valentines and indulged just this one day in sugary treats. I did see in some classrooms healthier choices such as melon and strawberries, but overall it was a surge of sugar. While it’s often difficult to swim against this tide, moderation helps. So now that Valentine's Day has come and gone, it’s time for the sweet treats to remain at home! Many thanks to the children whose handcrafted valentines decorate my office window.
A group of twenty student teachers from Shukutoku Vocational College in Tokyo, Japan, visited us this morning and were particularly taken by the preschool, kindergarten, and first-second multiage classes. The student teachers are in their first year of a two-year program specializing in early childhood education. After a full morning of classroom observations, they shared a storyboard of square-faced zoo animals, which the children had to guess the names of. The student teachers sang riddles and rhymes in Japanese. On the playcourt, another group of student teachers engaged first and second graders in a game of hand motions. You’d never guess that there was a language barrier because our children played and sang along, quite enamored with their new friends. In the Q & A session after their classroom observations, the student teachers commented on their amazement in seeing first and second graders doing research from websites and on the low teacher-student ratio here at MPI. It seems that in preschools in Japan, the student-teacher ratio can be thirty children to one teacher! We were happy to host the student teachers, who are thinking of returning next year.
By the time you read this week’s letter, Jump Rope for Heart will have been another successful event. We are aiming for 100% student participation and are approaching $8,000 in donations for the American Heart Association. I am looking forward to hearing the students’ original musical compositions using Garage Band (a software program), which will accompany their jump-rope routines. Many thanks to p.e. teacher Pam Jenkins for coordinating this annual event and to parents who’ve donated beverages and fruits or who will be assisting at the event. Now let’s just see if I can even jump ten minutes on Friday!
Jill Brooks, visual arts teacher for grades 1-5, her student teacher Tracey Stewart, and preschool and kindergarten atelierista
(art studio specialist) Jordan Guillory, are preparing students’ work for the art display on February 18 through February 23 at Kahala Mall
. The display will feature the theme of community and identity through self-portraiture. It is an amazing collection of pieces from every student preschool-Grade 5. Please take some time to enjoy this unique display during the upcoming three-day weekend.
Thanks to several parents who responded to our invitation to participate on an accreditation committee.
I’m taking an informal poll to determine readership of my Thursday letter, posted weekly. If you get to the end of my letter, kindly send me a quick email (ednah@ midpac.edu) with this subject title only — Thursday letter. No other message necessary.A reprieve this weekend from admissions assessments! Time to enjoy family and a good book.
For our children,
Edna L. Hussey