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JANUARY NEWS

Message from the Principal

Happy 2016! We hope you enjoyed your time off with family and friends. We look forward to spending the New Year with all of our families and are very excited to welcome our new families to our program! This is going to be a very exciting year for us here at Discovery Isle.

The staff and I would like to thank you for all of the wonderful thoughtful generous gifts we have received throughout the holiday season. We also want to Thank all of our families for participating in this years Pajama Drive! We proudly collected 137 pairs of PJ’s thanks to YOU! We are so lucky to have such kind and generous families here at Discovery Isle.  Thank you!

Your children are precious gifts and we are privileged to have the opportunity to play and work with them on a daily basis. Thank you for sharing your most special gift with us!

Article from the Education Department

The Value of Visual Art Activities for Your Preschooler

Visual art experiences help children develop skills such as critical thinking, self-expression, problem-solving, communication and collaboration. Our teachers focus on process-based art education, in which the experience of creating art is valued over the end product.

In our classrooms, teachers integrate art into many aspects of our Links to Learning curriculum. After reading a book about polar bears, teachers might ask students to create their own polar bears using sponges, paint, markers and paper. They encourage students to talk about their art, providing a great opportunity to learn new vocabulary, particularly words related to colors, shapes,textures, and emotions.

Our students are also exposed to and inspired by famous artwork. In order to cultivate that fascination, we discuss famous artists and art works and ask students to create replicas of well-known paintings and sculptures. For example, after learning about Michelangelo’s painting on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, teachers mimic the activity in the classroom. They tape paper underneath tables, and students practice painting a masterpiece while lying down.

Below are visual art activities you and your child can do at home, as well as recommended reading.

At Home:

  • Provide your child with finger paint, a large piece of paper and a smock. Let him create a masterpiece. Talk about how the paint feels and what colors and shapes he creates on the paper.
  • Start a journal with your child. Have him draw a picture of something that happened during the day. Avoid giving direction. Instead of saying “Draw a picture of your teacher and classmates,” encourage him to experiment using different colored markers or crayons. If age appropriate, ask your child to write a few words to describe the picture.
  • Give your child a piece of paper and a box of crayons or markers. Show him how to use the materials to make dots, lines and swirls on the paper. Let him take over and have fun. Encourage conversation about your child’s art by saying, “Tell me about what you made” or “I see you used a lot of blue in your picture. Why did you choose that color?”
  • Ask your child to decorate a sign for his bedroom door using various art materials. Have him write his name on the sign.

Recommended Reading:

  • The Dot by Peter Reynolds
  • Beautiful Oops by Barney Saltzberg
  • Art by Patrick McDonnell
  • Not a Box by Antoinette Portis
  • Mix It Up by Herve Tullet

It is wonderful to share the joy that children naturally take in using art materials. Giving children extra opportunities to connect art to the world around them, contributes to happiness and future success in elementary school and beyond.

– Lauren Starnes, PhD – Director of Early Childhood Education

Friendly Reminder:

Flu and cold season is here. We work hard to disinfect all toys, door knobs, tables and chairs throughout the day. We are teaching the children good hand washing skills and how to avoid catching a cough.  However, if a child has a runny nose, fever, or a bad cough, germs can spread. Below you will find a copy of Discovery Isle’s Illness Policy. Together we can make a difference during cold and flu season!

Thank you for being conscientious and keeping your children home when they are sick.

Illness Policy

Your child should not be brought to the center if, within the last 24 hours, the child has had a fever, diarrhea, an oozing
yellow/green runny nose, or other illnesses that could be given to children and teachers.

Therefore, it is important that you have some kind of alternate care for your child on such occasions. The center should be
notified immediately if your child has contracted one of the common communicable childhood diseases such as:
measles, chicken pox, or mumps. We can then inform other parents of the symptoms so they can watch for
them in their children.  Discovery Isle encourages safeguarding the health of young children by requesting parents to follow these
guidelines when deciding if a child is well enough to attend the center:
• FEVER: Keep child home until fever registers below 100′ for 24 hours and child is acting well.
• RUNNY NOSE: Keep child home until thick yellow or green discharge clears up.
• EARACHE: Keep child home until a doctor examines the ears and recommends the child return to
the center.
• RASH: Keep child home until a doctor determines the cause and recommends the child return to
the center.
• SORE THROAT: Keep child home until a doctor determines no strep infection exists and the
throat is healed.
• COUGH: Keep child home until coughing subsides.
• UPSET STOMACH/VOMITING/DIARRHEA: Keep child home until symptom free for 24 hours
and the child is eating normally without upset.
We encourage parents to call the center to indicate the child will be absent and the cause of the absence.

Brrrrrrr… the weather outside is ???

As you know, living in Southern California, it is very cold in the early mornings and late afternoons, but it is usually beautiful with a comfortable temperature during most of the day.
Helpful Tips
*Layer your child’s clothing to help with the temperature changes during the day
*Label all belongings with your child’s first and last name. This includes hats and gloves.
*Try to send the same jacket or coat to school. This helps both your child and teaching staff to recognize who the jacket belongs to.
*Many sweatshirts tend to look the same. Sew on fun colorful patches or get crafty with some clothing paint to help make the sweatshirt unique. This activity can be fun for your child and It will make it easier for them to locate his or her belongings. As a bonus if your child helps to design it they will take more pride and ownership of it!
*Try to take jackets home on a daily basis. Our lost and found tub always grows tremendously over winter! Missing belongings can be found easily if we try to locate them within the first couple of days.

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