That said (and once I truly 'got on board'), I had a blast. My co-teacher Maggie was and is a beautiful woman - not only physically but inside as well. We shared a strong literacy background for early childhood which benefited our students and we adhered to the Reggio Emilia approach to education to build a strong foundation for the children, but still in all preschool is about play and exploration. As cognitive-developmental psychologist Jean Piaget wrote "Play is child's work".
In this environment out went running records and miscue analysis and in came hands-on arts and crafts activities. We did some wonderful things with our students but mostly it is about providing them with the materials and letting them explore them in a free style manner.
Except during the holidays where there was an unspoken rule that the children would bring something home for their parents; their painted hands pressed on paper in the shape of a heart for Valentine's Day, snow globes in the winter, painted child crafted framed pictures for Mother's Day.
By the time Father's Day rolled around in our second year we were out of ideas. So I grabbed the latest issue of The Mailbox: The Idea Magazine for Teachers and thumbed through it looking for a quick, easy Father's Day gift. We can across an idea with the title "I'm Nuts About You". Maggie and I read it and LAUGHED. How lame! We wondered if we could possibly get away with such a silly gift for dad. But we were out of ideas and tired so we went ahead.
The kids loved it. The parents commented on how sweet it was. And Maggie and I added it into our repertoire of nifty ideas. I now pass this along to you - if you find yourself in need of a simple Father's Day 'token of your affection' gift, give it a try.
What You Need:
- A bag of peanuts
- A brown paper lunch bag
- One sheet of construction paper (any color)
- A hole punch
- String, yarn or raffia (Colored raffia looks the best and is my personal favorite)
Directions: Place peanuts in the bag. Close bag and fold over the top. Punch a hole through the flap. Cut out a peanut shaped card and have the child write "I'm nuts about you!" on it. They might also want to add "Happy Father's Day" or some such sentiments. Pictures are acceptable. Punch a hole in the top of the nut. Take your raffia (or string or yarn) and attach the card to the bag. Give to dad.
*Not the best gift idea if anyone involved has peanut allergies. Use common sense when attempting to carry out this activity.