Week of October 31

All about chickens The Davis family keep several chickens in their yard, and Mrs. Davis and her third grade son brought two of them and some of their eggs to Alpha this week in conjunction with the farm food study.  The students were fascinated by the feathery friends and listened attentively as Mrs. Davis shared information about them. They found out that chickens need to eat shells and stones that stay in their gizzards to help them grind their food, and that they love cracked corn as a treat but mostly eat bugs and worms. The boys and girls were excited to find out that chickens, like their hermit crabs molt! Thanks so much to the Davises for sharing their expertise and pets with us! A guardian for the garden Now that the rain finally stopped for awhile and they are no longer saturated, our gardens are starting to flourish, so the children decided that their plants… [Read more]

Handling Emotions

When young children are faced with new experiences, they often are unable to understand the emotions that are engendered. Discomfort, disappointment, sadness, frustration, fear or anger may cause them to react strongly in negative ways. Children need us to help them identify their feelings AND to validate them. It is okay to be angry or frustrated, but what are acceptable ways to handle those feelings? Learning to do this is a process, not an innate ability. As they learn to recognize their feelings, children become better able to regulate and deal with them. The reactions of adults are an important factor in teaching children to handle their emotions, particularly in response to negative situations. This is two-fold: how the adults in children’s lives react themselves when they are angry, frustrated, disappointed, etc., (as the children are always aware of, and often emulating our actions) and how adults respond to the… [Read more]

Week of October 24

Sixth graders help in Experiential School Each day, several sixth graders give up lunch with their friends to spend time helping our Experiential School students transition from lunch to rest time. The older students build, do puzzles with and read to the younger students. There are so many Middle Schoolers who want to be involved that each Alpha and JK class has  one or two students to help every day! A Visit to Animal Medical Hospital We so appreciate it when members of the community step up to give our students relevant experiences that extend their classroom and discovery learning. Last week, all three JK classes were invited by Dr. Doley, a Shorecrest parent who happens to be a veterinarian, to visit the Animal Medical Hospital  in St. Petersburg. The students loved seeing the x-rays, meeting the clinic tortoise, dog and cat. It was especially exciting to listen to and compare the difference between the… [Read more]