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I hope this newsletter finds everyone healthy and safe during this crazy unprecedented time. Of course, this has impacted our preschool heavily, so this update will be a bit different, but I can tell you what we have done through it all.

We ended February with all the Valentine happenings, children around the world, dentist, five senses and weather. The first part of March was all about Dr Seuss, Fairy Tales and Nursery rhymes. Then we come to Friday the 13th of March, the last day before Spring Break. The day itself was great, but a mixed bag of sad and happy as we celebrated the birthday of a kiddo who would be moving out of state during spring break. It doubled as a “going away party” as well. I remember the jokes flying around amongst the parents on Monday the ninth about how we should prepare for a crazy week with kiddos since there was a full moon, daylight savings time, which meant losing an hour of sleep, and it was the week before spring break, which we all know makes everyone excited, and it was Friday the 13th … all in the same week! Little did we know that all those things we joked about would be the least of our worries. I don’t think I will ever forget that day. I had allowed my teenager to stay home since some of her teachers said there wouldn’t be much happening anyway (and one even mentioned that if it were up to her she would advise kids to not come to school with the impending news of the virus), so she got to do the grocery shopping for the week since I was at work all day! It was a blessing to have her help!

Fast-forward to late-April and I’ve found myself launched into a whirlwind of learning new ways to use technology to keep our families and kiddos connected. In a nutshell, Zoom has become my new friend!

Zoom meetings are on Monday for staff to touch base, Tuesday with staff and our Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist from Summitstone, Thursdays for two small groups of three-year-old kiddos and their parents, and Fridays with four small groups with our Pre-K kiddos and parents. In between those days, I make a video of myself reading a book, singing happy birthday to a kiddo, making a craft or some other thing. Then I post it on a private Facebook sharing page I created for families to communicate with each other and the staff, and Seesaw, which is another tool I’m using to communicate with families to post assignments, activities or announcements.

The kiddos love this weekly interaction with their teachers and friends. Parents tell me the kids ask daily when the next Zoom time is! I’ve continued our birthday tradition by taking birthday bags to the kids’ doorsteps so they don’t miss out on what should be our classroom celebration complete with hats and bags. The caterpillars are at my house so we can watch the metamorphosis just as we would in class. They love the pictures and in person viewing on Zoom calls.

Since our Mother’s Day Tea will not be happening, I’m making a little something nice for those moms that my daughters and I will deliver to their doorsteps on May 8, the day the Tea would have been. Graduation will look quite different this year as well, and I’m working on that right now. Hopefully my plan works, and I can report on what we’ll be doing next month. Until then, please stay safe and healthy!

Blessings to you all!

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 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any questions about the Preschool.