Stop the inquisition: How to talk to your children about their school day

Trying to get information from children about their day at school can often be frustrating for parents. In their eagerness to learn about the children’s experiences, the “inquisition” may start as soon as they get in the car or the parents return home from work. Questions like “How was your day?” and/or “What did you learn today?”, sometimes meet with resistance, reticence or feigned ignorance garnering responses like, “Nothing,” “I don’t remember,” or “I played.” Often children need to wind down before they are ready to share the details of their day or to have a chance to share on their own timetable. Go easy with questions; instead model sharing information about your day with your children, much as you would like them to share things from theirs. Use dinner or bedtime for everyone in the family to tell about the best part of and/or something that happened during their… [Read more]

Week of August 28

We’ve come to the end of our first full week of the 2015-2016 school year in The Experiential School of Tampa Bay, and it’s been a great one! We believe in starting the year off slowly to enable the students to become comfortable in their new environment. Interactive modeling is used to involve the children in becoming familiar with procedures and routines, from sitting in a circle for morning meeting to using the bathroom, washing hands (frequently!), responding to a signal for attention, and moving respectfully from one place to another as a group. In interactive modeling, the teacher demonstrates an action after asking the children to watch how she does it; she then asks the children to describe what she did and then has one or more students copy her actions. By having to describe what they saw, the boys and girls learn to observe and to use language to relate what they see,… [Read more]

Back to School 2015!

What an amazing first half week in The Experiential School of Tampa Bay! The preschoolers were all smiles as they began exploring the many areas – and animals – in the classrooms. They are making new friends and reconnecting with old ones, discovering many facts about their classroom pets and learning many new routines. The 4-5 year olds in Junior Kindergarten spent their first few days getting to know one another, learning each other’s names, talking about measurements and helping their teachers weigh and measure each classmate. “I’m 42 inches tall but Mr. Hedgehog is only 6 inches tall!” They really enjoyed measuring different items found around the classroom and began discussing which object was the tallest. More photos from JK this week. Mrs. Carson and Ms. Wiltshire’s “Tiny Seeds” planted Forget-me-not seeds on the first day in their 3-4 year old Alpha classroom. The Tiny Seeds were delighted to help mix a batch of… [Read more]