Tuesday, March 4, 2014

SOLSC #4 May I work with a few?

I am posting every day during March as part of the annual "Slice of LifeChallenge for Two Writing Teachers.  Check out their website for lots more reflections on teaching.


Another freezing cold day,
another indoor play day,
another day of unceasing loud voices and nonstop activity,
another restless nap time.

After the requisite one hour of attempting to nap, it was time to take the wide-awake ones to our infamous "Purple Room" for some run around time (and allow the sleepers some real peace and quiet).

Much to my surprise, only seven children were awake!
Amelie, Helen, Eloise, Bernie, Zuren, Micaela, Caroline.

This had never happened before - seven children only?

What a gift this was for me! I admit to being overwhelmed at times with 23 preschoolers in my class. Working with seven children only? Ha! This is not work!

I slipped out of the classroom with my seven charges, leaving Melissa and Claire to watch over the sleepers. I didn't have my computer or notepad with me. I freed myself to simply "be" with the children.

Using all of the blue blocks, the children built one enormous house and a second smaller house next door. They created a story, with specific roles, playing with me. 

They insisted I was "the daughter," with
"Daddy Zuren," 
"Mommy Micaela," 
"baby sister Helen,
"baby sister Amelie," 
"big sister Eloise," 
"Grammy Caroline,"
"Teacher Bernie," and 
"Mr. Charlie, the big brother who lived next door.

Following their lead, I 

ate pancake breakfasts
went to school
had a fire drill
had a snow day and didn't have school that day
went to visit Mr. Charlie and have a snack of cookies and juice
stayed with Grammy while Mommy and Daddy went away for the weekend
played hide and seek with my sisters
played in the backyard

A pretty good life for a daughter!

In the midst of a hectic day, 
stuck indoors, 
lots of loud play, 
I was given the gift of being with just a few.

I wonder how I might make this happen more regularly?

(A daily share by a preschooler, in their own words)
A Story Collage by Amelie

Once upon a time, there was a little boy in the house. And then he went to Amy’s house. And then he saw a brick house that was strong. These two brick houses were strong and this one was, too. And all the city was strong. This little character went into a house, this strong house. And then, what happened – a big monster came. The little boy is now at home. The eggs weren’t going to be taken, or the feathers. The light is on, in the house. The End


  1. Love visiting "Mr. Charlie", & those wonderful blue blocks! What a great time, & the collage/story-being safe is what it's often about! Thanks Maureen!

  2. Haha, definitely, "a pretty good life for a daughter!" This sounds so fun and the 5th grade teacher in me is a little exhausted after reading this. Lol. It reminds me of when my kids play with play dough and ask me to eat their pretend sandwich or ice cream. Though, it is nothing like your experience today, I am once again reminded that my kids need more creative play time. I also, love that you shared a house picture today! How fitting!

  3. I freed myself to simply "be" with the children.--- Yes! This is great!

  4. This sounds wonderful. And it is a reminder of why I like being in rooms with small children. That said, I don't remember the last time I went to Dramatic Play or the block corner and actually took part in a game. And having just 7 to yourself! That sounds simply magical. Could you start doing small group play pull outs at Centers time?

    Also, is Mr. Charlie our old Charlie?