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I cannot believe we are almost ready for Spring Break already, but once again, here we are with time flying faster with each passing day! I still don’t know how that happens.

Our February has been busy with our Children around the World unit where we learned about Australia, Africa and South America. The kids enjoyed dancing to some of their special music and making fun crafts. We also had some fun with Corduroy the Bear, who wanted a pocket.

Valentine’s Day parties were a lot of fun thanks to our wonderful homeroom moms, who created fun games and activities for the kiddos. In keeping with the heart theme, we learned a bit about our own hearts and how they work. The kids really enjoyed the activity of listening to their own resting heart rate, then comparing that to the active heart rate after they jumped in place for a little bit.

We learned about our five senses, too. Now that was funny! Leave it to this crazy preschool teacher to allow the kids to do a “sense of taste” activity that included salt, sugar, lemonade power mix, cinnamon and a drop of vinegar! Boy did the kids (and teachers) get some giggles out of that! The final tasting item was a couple of mini marshmallows, though … we had to end on a good note, right? The three-year-olds thoroughly enjoyed a “sense of touch” art activity that allowed them to squish shaving cream onto a paper with their hands, while also mixing colors to create a new one. They had a blast with that and let’s just say a few of them were up to their elbows in the shaving cream!

Since we discuss Community Helpers in January, we rounded that unit out with a visit to the Police Station! Officer Dane Stratton (Del and Jeannie Benson’s son-in-law) was gracious enough to give both of our Pre-Kindergarten classes a tour of the entire Police Station. We met the dispatchers and people in the offices, saw all of the cars and motorcycles and even got to climb into the SWAT vehicle! It was a fabulous day where the parents had just as much fun as the kids did! Thank you so much, Dane!

February is dental month, so of course we talked about our teeth. Everyone enjoyed telling us about their visits to the dentist and all about any cavities they did or didn’t have. We did an experiment to see what happens to our teeth when we don’t brush. We put a hard-boiled egg in a cup of water and the other egg in a cup of Coca Cola. Then we took a tally to see what everyone thought would happen to the egg after it sat there for a while. The kids predicted well!

Next is weather week. Learning about clouds, rain, snow, storms and sunshine will be a lot of fun complete with more experiments and activities. We will also be going to the museum for a field trip where we will participate in a class called “sink or float,” where the kids make a hypothesis about which items will sink and which will float in their water bowls. It’s a great activity and the kids love it every year we go.

Bible stories this month have included Jesus washing the disciples’ feet, Jonah and the whale and blind Bartimaeus. Discussing Bartimaeus during the week about the five senses was perfect timing. We talked about how hard it would be if we didn’t have our eyesight after taking a few moments to close our eyes to experience the darkness that Bartimaeus dealt with.

We are moving ahead with our Colorado Shines rating soon. We are having more meetings with the Early Childhood Council of Larimer County to make sure we are completely prepared for that day. We don’t know for sure, but we expect that it will either be in March or April. There is a small chance it could go out into May, but we will just have to wait and see. We will not know the day since they will just show up and surprise us when they are ready. We have received over $4,000 in state grant funds to our program for quality improvement as a result of this program, giving us an opportunity to replace or update a lot of materials. This has been great for our program, since school products and materials are quite expensive to purchase.

Fall enrollment opened January 25. Our morning PreK class is already full with a waiting list, but we still have some openings in our afternoon PreK class and our morning Preschool/three-year-old class. Let people know we have openings and please contact us if you have any questions!

I can’t believe the next time I write a newsletter, Spring Break will be over, and we will be getting ready to welcome our caterpillars to the classroom. Spring is such a welcome time of year after the cold of winter, and I think everyone is ready for it this year!

Kandy Wise is the Director of Open Arms Preschool, a ministry of Saint John’s Lutheran Church. You may reach her at 482-1357 or with any questions about the Preschool.