Community Coming Together
By Chloe Learey, Executive Director
Winston Prouty is honored to be a beneficiary of the Neighbor 2 Neighbor (N2N) program hosted by Brattleboro Area Hospice this year. N2N is an opportunity to double philanthropic dollars by supporting people in the community to make purchases at Experienced Goods for things they need. Donations go to buying gift cards to the store, and this year those gift cards will be given to people who receive support from Winston Prouty, Windham Windsor Housing Trust, and the Afghan Refugee Project.
There are many examples from the past 2 pandemic years of how different parts of our community has come together to help us take care of each other, connecting the dots to design creative solutions like this that extend our efforts and make them even stronger. Continue reading
Par for the Cause
We’ve set the date for our biggest fundraiser of the year! Par the Cause will be on Saturday, June 25th. “The Par” includes a mini-disc-golf course through campus forest and fields, a family-fun picnic and a monthly raffle leading up to the event.
Our efforts right now are focusing on gathering business support of this event, which is where the bulk of the proceeds come from. Do you know of a business that might like to support Winston Prouty by placing an ad in the event program? Or perhaps they would make a donation to our raffle? The best way to make these connections is through word of mouth, so if you think your employer, or perhaps your hair dresser or mechanic might like to chip in, let us know! We’re keeping a master list of all the ideas, so please send your ideas to Sarah DiNicola at email@example.com or via the Brightwheel app. Thank you!
Resources & Events for families
Parents and caregivers sought for BBF Families & Communities Committee
Building Bright Futures is seeking parents, guardians and providers to become advocates for early education services in Vermont by joining their Families & Communities Committee. The group meets virtually 2 times per month and committee members are paid $15/hour to participate. Learn more
The Basics Principle #2 – Talk, Sing & Point
Talking to your child teaches them about the world and helps you get to know the fascinating person they are becoming! Boost your child’s language development and knowledge of the world with these simple activities:
- name body parts as you point to them
- sing songs and recite rhymes
- talk to your infant or toddler about things you see and do together
- point and identify objects wherever you go
- ask your toddler questions
- smile and look into your babies eyes
- respond to your baby’s voice with facial expressions
Here is a short video that explores this Basic principal: How do children learn to communicate?
Learn more about The Basics.
Early Learning Center News
Professional Development in the ELC
This month the teachers will be talking more about the “culture of food” here at Winston Prouty. Informed by a training that will be led by Sheila Humphreys from Food Connects teachers will learn more about how Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE’s) can impact children’s relationship with food, and explore ways of bringing that knowledge into their classroom practice. We are thinking as a staff about our approach to food as it relates to celebrations and holidays. We believe that food is such an integral part of all of our lives, and we recognize the complexity of trying to have a blanket policy. Some families relish the opportunity to share goodies, some families don’t have the time or money to bring in food, and allergies, food restrictions, and family preferences can make sharing food difficult for some.
We would love to hear from you about your own experiences with the current “food culture” at Winston Prouty. What has your experience around food been during your time here? Have you brought things to share? Have you felt unable to bring things to share? Do you find celebrations that involve food stressful? Fun? An opportunity to share something meaningful from your own family with others? What else might we want to consider from your perspective as part of this conversation? All thoughts are welcome and appreciated. Feel free to reach out to Ann (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Honor (email@example.com) with your thoughts or experiences. We look forward to hearing from you.
The month of February we enjoyed making some fun art projects for their families. We have more mobile infants so we have been spending more time in the big gross motor room with puffy blocks and balls!
For the month of March, we are going to work on using open cups with the infants just for a intro when they do end up moving up to the next room. We will be doing more sensory activities as well! We also welcome friend Sophie who will be starting in Mid March!
In the month of February, the Willow class did many mark making experiences as well as sensory experiences. The class really enjoyed having open ended painting open and available to them all throughout the day. We did lots of experimenting with mixing different sensory materials together. The materials we used included cornstarch, water, flour, shaving cream, and more! We look forward to expanding this big interest of mixing different materials together in the month of March.
In the month of February, we have explored different sensory items. We started with play dough. We squeezed and rolled it out to make shapes with cookie cutters. We then made Kool-Aid play dough. We decided to make a different texture and made slime. There was red, blue, and yellow. We mixed to see what colors we could make. We then went into paper mache. This took quite a bit of time to prepare for: they cut the paper, made the glue, blew up the balloons, and then we put it all together. It was a gooey, fun mess! We explored musical instruments and at times, had a little marching band throughout the room. We sang and danced in the afternoon’s which filled up a lot of our time.
In the month of March, we will work with clay. We will use this to make sculptures, cover things, squeeze, make prints, and paint. When the weather gets warmer, we will go outside for longer periods of time and explore the outdoors. We are also looking forward to helping prepare snack for the ELC.
The month of February was quite busy for the children! February saw themes within the classroom such as a week of Valentine’s Day, a week discussing Chinese New Year, and a construction/building theme! During the month, we continued to work on our letter and number recognition as well as matching objects, rhyming, and patterns. In our week of Chinese New Year, we discussed what this holiday was about as well as made paper lanterns that we hung in our hallway. For our construction theme, we have been focusing on building towers in the block area as well as building snowmen in the snow outside. We continued to have our Monday outside time with Alfred where we visited the “Swimming Pool,” went to Mrs. Cranberry’s classroom, visited Blue Jay Hill, and took some walks in the woods looking for animal tracks in the snow. We also celebrated two birthdays in the room this month; Ryan who turned four and Madison who turned four as well!
During the month of March, we will continue to work on our construction/building theme, and we will also be discussing the St. Patrick’s Day holiday and learning what that is about. With Spring fast approaching (and hopefully the warmer weather returning soon,) we hope to get outside a bit more and visit some of our old stomping grounds a bit more such as the Rock Garden and Rainbow Dinosaur Egg!
- March 1 – Happy Birthday Darby, Acorn Room teacher
- March 9 – Grayson is 5!
- March 20 – Happy Birthday Alfred, ELC Outdoor Program Coordinator!
- March 22 – Happy Birthday Angela, ELC Administrative Coordinator!
- March 28 – Happy Birthday Sueño, Early Education Outreach Specialist
- March 28 – Happy Birthday Honor – ELC Co-Director!
Dates to Remember
- Friday, March 11 – The Center closes at 12:00 for all-staff meeting
- Friday, March 25 – The ELC closes at 12:00 for family conferences
- Monday, March 28 – The ELC is closed for family conferences
- April is Month of the Young Child – a full month of free, family fun activities – full listing of events coming soon!
- Saturday, April 2 – 18th Annual Young Children’s Art Exhibit – Memorial Park 10-12:30 – Come enjoy the work of our community’s youngest artists! Early childhood educators will be displaying their students’ artistic creations. Hands-on activities, refreshments, and information on resources in our community will be available. Event will include demonstration by Southern Vermont Natural History Museum, Sing & Dance performance by Robin Morgan, giveaways by Cheshire Children’s Museum, visit from Early Learning Express Bookmobile and FREE 10-minute chair massages for parents and caregivers by massage therapists Michele Meulendyk and Lynette Aura Pritchard.