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  1. #1
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    Any themes/activities coming up you'd like to share?

    I'm feeling short on inspiration. How much do others plan/prepare for daycare?

    I've got a 13mo, 16mo, 3yo and 4yo full time, and a 2yo one day a week. I'd like to step up my game. I have a montessori set up, so except for our routine (food, outside time, etc) they just play what they want. Could any of you share what you have planned for the coming week? Does anyone use monthly or weekly themes?

  2. #2
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    I very loosely use seasonal themes. For the rest of the winter I'll have a basket of read-alouds about snow, hibernation, gingerbread, etc. We'll make some lemon snow ice cream at some point, and gingerbread pancakes. We don't do a lot of planned crafts, but we'll 'paint' with coloured ice cubes and make some gingerbread playdough as well. I do have quite a collection of seasonal toys, so there will be a gingerbread cookie play set for our kitchen, a snowman stacking game, indoor snowballs, and I've taken Santa out of our Playmobil Advent calendar set and left out the snowy trees and the animals.

  3. #3
    Euphoric ! bright sparks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kindredspirit View Post
    I'm feeling short on inspiration. How much do others plan/prepare for daycare?

    I've got a 13mo, 16mo, 3yo and 4yo full time, and a 2yo one day a week. I'd like to step up my game. I have a montessori set up, so except for our routine (food, outside time, etc) they just play what they want. Could any of you share what you have planned for the coming week? Does anyone use monthly or weekly themes?

    I go in waves to be honest. I do less planning in the summer as we spend so much time outside but I the world yet I find it helps to have some kind of plan to help prevent cabin fever during the colder months. In addition to your Montessori program you could have a daily adult led activity where the focus is on one group activity. Might be as simple as a collaborative activity focussing on one type of toy versus every child having something different out. I do this with a toy that gets less attention but works well as a group. For example the megabloks. It teaches the kids to work together, focus rather than going from one thing to another in a few minutes and forces them to play outside their comfort zone encouraging them to have new experiences.

    I will also do some themed activities but I have a habit of doing things I like more often than not so I do try to push myself every year to explore other things. For winter themes I will die cut mittens from scraps of material, add numbers or letters for each child's name, string them into garlands, make collages etc Pinterest is an awesome source of inspiration. This year I plan to do paper plate crafts more and also the crafts that go with a popular children's book. I hope this helps :-)

  4. #4
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    I have a few laminated sheets for my own reference that i've stuck to the wall in my daycare room. It lists the Months and then underneath each month, some of the themes i want to touch on during that month. For January, we'll be exploring snow, ice, hibernation, polar animals, opposites, community worker (librarian), letters i and j, and number 5. I'll take the theme of snow and we'll make paper flakes, i'll bring in some snow to our sensory bin ..then February a bunch of other themes that I compiled from internet activity searches. That way i don't have to try and figure out what to do each month. By the end of the year, we've pretty much covered everything under the toddler sun. For the letter and number activities i just boldly marker the character on a half sheet of paper for them to trace or they stick on coloured dots (from Staples) to trace.

  5. #5
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    Thank you for sharing! I pared back the playroom (stored 1/3 of materials) to make room for some theme activities. I've been really over-planning and stressing about getting it right. I guess I just need to try it out!

  6. #6
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    I've always been recycling the huge cereal boxes like cheerios, rice crisp, and others, but the large title letters make great learning activities. I cut out the individual letters; kids glue them on paper to make words or simply a collage of letters. Because they're large, it's a great tool for learning.

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