AUGUST 2018
Greetings!

SUMMER WRAP UP
We are wrapping up our “Minnesota for Mini-sotans” summer program this month. Our unit for the month is Minnesota Grown and we’ll be sure to include some of the yummy vegetables from our classroom gardens at the playground. We are excited to harvest our vegetables! You will find planted tomatoes, zucchini, peppers and more. 
GOODBYE KINDERGARTENERS
Towards the end of August, we will bid a fond farewell to the children who are starting Kindergarten—class of 2031! We have loved getting to know you and being part of your early childhood years. We hope you have a lot of fun memories of our school and we look forward to hearing about your continued adventures in Kindergarten. Best of luck to all of you! We hope you will stop by and visit us!!
UPCOMING EVENTS
AUGUST FIELD TRIP
All preschool classes will be going to Bloomington’s Side Kick Theater for a show called Boogie Down to Bremen Town on Thursday, August 9. The bus leaves at 9:15 and will return around noon. We hope to eat lunch at the picnic grounds after the show. Please pack a peanut/nut free lunch. Parent volunteers are very limited since we have a certain number of tickets. Please call the office for more info.
PARENT REMINDERS
PLANNING AHEAD
If your child is participating in Soccer Shots and you would like to see the skills they have been working on this summer, we’d like to invite you to our Parent Visit day on Monday, August 20

This fall, Especially for Children’s PreK class will participate in a collaborative intergenerational initiative between Brookdale Senior Living and Edina City of Commerce. More information will be announced in mid-August. 

Especially for Children will be closed on Friday, August 31 , for our Staff Development Day and Monday, September
3 , for Labor Day.
SCHEDULE CHANGES & VACATION CREDITS
We want to remind you to make sure you give at least a two week notice in case of any changes to your child’s schedule and attendance (including withdrawals). This allows us to properly plan for tuition billing as well as move-ups and classroom changes within our program. 

Also, we want to remind you that in order to get you vacation credits when your child is absent, your tuition needs to be paid in full and you need to submit an account adjustment form. These forms are located in the check boxes at the sign-in tables; one in the reception area and one in the Polar Bear classroom.  
PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS
OUR CLASSROOM GARDENS
Our gardens have been growing all summer and we are getting excited to harvest the vegetables this month! You will find planted tomatoes, cucumbers, fresh herbs and much, much more. Most of our gardening is taking place in the garden tables and in the big planter on the playground, and we have also planted some seeds in our classrooms. We can’t wait to see how it all turns out!!  
PARENT RESOURCES
SUMMER SCIENCE EXPERIMENT
Try this fun science experiment with your child to talk about the life cycle of a plant as well as what a plant needs to grow and flourish!

Materials needed:
  • 4 small plastic cups
  • 4 stalks of celery
  • 4 different food-colors
Directions:
  1. Add 10 drops of food coloring to each cup (1 color per cup), then add ¼ cup of water to each cup.
  2. Place 1 stalk of celery in each cup. Notice how the color begins to leak up the celery almost immediately!
  3. Let the celery soak overnight, then take a peak in the morning to see the changes!
Image from: laughingkidslearn.com
ESPECIALLY FOR PARENTS
PriscillaWilliamsEFCPres
PLAYING WITH NATURE
With only one month left of summer, I’m assessing whether or not we have taken full advantage of Minnesota summer at our house. We have done lots of swimming and biking. We eat as many meals as possible outdoors. And we interact with neighbors as we are out working on our lawns and playing with the children. That part I find especially fascinating as toddlers to teenagers to adults play games and mingle in front yards. It is such a relaxed and special time.

But during our hours inside we tend to gravitate to the same activities we do throughout the year. We play board games, do a little coloring, read stories, chat about our days and do household chores. Hey, why couldn’t we fold laundry on the patio instead of on the living room couch? And the spot for reading stories could move under a tree or on lawn chairs.

My goal for August is to bring the inside out. We started the other night when our grandson wanted to play Candyland after dinner. My husband said, “Let’s take it outside and play on the patio table.” What fun it was to enjoy the incredible weather while playing a favorite family game. After we finished, we stayed outside to play “I Spy with my Little Eye.” It was a whole different experience than playing the same game inside.

We then went over to one of our birch trees and examined what the Japanese Beetles are up to. We found a couple of toads hopping across the lawn. We picked a few weeds. It was a great evening outdoors.

During August I want to do some projects with materials from nature. We will collect items from around our neighborhood and sort them into categories. I read about a fun activity where you wrap tape around a child’s wrist with the tape inside out to create a sticky bracelet. Children can stick small treasures to their bracelets as they explore and then sort, play and do crafts with them later.
I remember doing sand art and leaf prints as a child. We may even create a bulletin board of nature art to see how many different creative projects we can come up with that use elements from the outdoors.

We each have special ways of enjoying summer. Look on our blog where we have listed a few projects. And add your own ideas to share!
TWIN CITIES
FAMILY EVENTS

Now-9/3   Kangaroo Crossing , MN Zoo, Apple Valley
Now-9/3 Towers of Tomorrow with Legos , Science Museum of MN, St. Paul
Now-9/9 Dinosaur Train , MN Children’s Museum, St. Paul
Now-10/21 Origami in the Garden , MN Landscape Arboretum,
8/3-8/5  Uptown Art Fair , Minneapolis
8/10-8/12  Irish Fair , Harriet Island, St. Paul
8/18-10/30  Minnesota Renaissance Festival , Shakopee, MN
8/19 Red Barn Pizza Farm , Northfield, MN
8/23-9/3  Minnesota State Fair , Saint Paul, MN

All Summer -  Music and Movies in the Park  - Various Minneapolis Parks  
We were interested in this Community Playthings article,  Giving Children a Natural Start , which discusses the reasons for and methods of giving children an environmental education. The concept of literacy (what you know, how you feel, and what skills you have) in the context of the natural environment is so important.  
 
Especially for Children
3300 Edinborough Way 
Edina MN 55435 
(952) 835-0505 

Center Directors:
Anna Wilson 
Samantha Baker
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