The Elm Tree Newsletter    January 2011



     There are a few new families joining us this month.  We’d like to extend a warm welcome to:

Elias, 12 months, M-F full days

Amitai, 12 months, T/Th mornings

Phineas, 26 months, MWF mornings

Bella, 20 months, T/Th mornings



  Kenny has made a resolution to write in our blog every day in 2011, then he amended it to exclude the first week of the year.  Barring any unforeseen events or illnesses, you can find a summary of our day’s activities and events at



Sick Policy

     Our program is not set up to take care of sick children; we appreciate everyone’s effort to keep your children home if they aren’t feeling well.  This is very helpful in keeping the other children, their families and also the teachers from getting sick.  In addition, it significantly reduces recovery time if children can rest at home away from the busy pace of the classroom.



If a child comes down with a fever we ask that they not return to the program until 24 hours have passed fever-free without the use of fever-reducing medications.  This is because a fever often goes away in the morning and then returns as the day wears on.




Natural Playscape

     Phase 2 of our natural playscape plan is now underway.  This month we will be in the planning phase and next month we will install a willow hut with a tunnel and a rustic play-fort!  We have a committee of parents who are helping with the planning, and we’ll need plenty of additional volunteers when it comes time to install the structures in late February.  Let us know if you are interested in helping with these projects!  We could use folks who are willing to donate their time and/or materials or help us find donated/reclaimed materials!



     It would be great to have some parents who are interested in helping with the fund-raising aspect of this project as well.  We’ll have several fundraising events this spring such as a concert for kids and a toddler art show; we’ll let you know more details as we solidify the dates and venues!



     For those of you who are new to the program, you can find out more about this exciting project on our website,!


     We like to get outside into the fresh air every day, and we usually do unless it’s below freezing or otherwise too uncomfortable for the children, so please be sure to bring appropriate winter-type gear including a warm coat, snow pants, winter boots, gloves, and a hat every day.

     Morning children should be leaving by 12:30 and full day kiddos by 4:00.  Parents and caregivers will need to arrive before this time in order to facilitate a smooth transition.  Staying beyond 12:30 makes our transition into naptime more difficult and staying beyond 4:00 keeps our teachers from cleaning up and getting to their various after-work activities on time.  Thank you for your consideration!


Good Health Practices

     Our goal, as always, is to keep everyone here healthy and well.  Here are a few reminders for parents and caregivers to help accomplish this: 

§  Please be sure to wash your child’s hands at arrival and again at departure so the germs don’t travel between school and home.

§  It would be great if families could apply the same health practices at home that we work on at school.  Remind children to cough and sneeze into their elbow, use tissues to wipe runny noses (instead of hands or sleeves) and wash hands after coughing, sneezing or wiping their nose.  It’s easier for the children to remember if these routines are reinforced at home. (And it just might spare your family from a cold or two as well.)


Curriculum Corner

     The theme for January is music and movement.  Being as how January is the month where we get trapped inside the most, it is good to have a curriculum that has us using our bodies and moving in expansive ways.  For group times, we begin with a light yoga session where we use animal poses to our advantage.  We are the rare yoga class where you hear  snake hissing and mouse squeaking instead of just breathing.



     After that we switch over to some American pop culture toddler classics.  We move about to such songs as “The Hokey Pokey” and “Ring around the Rosie”.  Since these songs are well known, we probably don’t need to give out any lyrics, however we will put out a request. 


     One delight of music and movement month is international music festivals.  We have a number of instruments in back and if we get some good international music, we can do some play along.  Just imagine on one of these cold days having an African dance party with drums or a Latin cha-cha party with maracas.  Check your music collections and bring us your best in international music, please.


Upcoming Dates to Remember



Jan 17th – Closed for MLK Jr. Day