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Our March unit is "READ READ READ!!" We are excited to kick off our literacy-focused month with Dr. Seuss' birthday. Theodor Seuss Geisel was born on March 2, 1904. He came up with his first book And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, while on vacation. It was rejected by the first 43 publishers he approached. In 1937, it was finally published under the name Dr. Seuss. He used Dr. because his father always wanted him to be a doctor. The rest is history. Dr. Seuss' books are timeless and have been read by many generations. Which is your favorite?? If your child has a favorite Dr. Seuss book, please have him/her bring it to school the week of March 6. Teachers will read the books to the class throughout the week. 
During the month of March, each classroom will focus on their own choices of favorite authors, fairy tales and nursery rhymes. Please see each classroom's lesson plan for details.  
On Thursday, March 16, Richfield's Read-A-Story Theater joins us for a fun-filled story time. Read-A-Story Theater consists of a group of talented seniors who wear colorful costumes and imaginative masks, and tell familiar stories to our children. We've enjoyed their visits for years, and appreciate the time the seniors put into their performances! 
On Thursday, March 30, Robert the Magician will perform "The Magic of Dr. Seuss" Show, starting at 10 AM. Don't be late!
During the month of March, we are also asking parents and grandparents to join us as classroom readers. Pick out your favorite book, and sign up for a time to join your child's class as a story teller! 

Anna will be on vacation the week of March 27-31. Anna is traveling to Italy with her daughter's high school choir over spring break. They will have the opportunity to sing at St. Peter's as well as some other locations along the Amalfi coast. 

A great way to promote reading is to make sure the whole family reads together. This doesn't mean reading aloud to your child 100 percent of the time. Reading together can help foster feelings of love and security, increase imagination and vocabulary and increase future success in reading and writing.
Here are a few tips for an enjoyable reading time:
  • Chose a book with repetition.
  • Choose a story that is not too long.
  • Choose a book with pictures that you can discuss together.
  • Read with expression.
  • Be careful not to read too quickly.
  • Allow your child to ask questions.
  • Set aside a special reading time, such as right before bed time.
  • Read books that your child likes again and again.
  • For older children, begin introducing chapter books. Each night, encourage your child to remember what happened the previous evening, and encourage him/her to predict what may happen in the story. There's nothing like a good cliffhanger!!
  1. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
  2. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
  3. Good Night Moon by Margret Wise Brown
  4. Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss
  5. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs by Judi Barrett
  6. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
  7. Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst
  8. Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney
  9. Pat the Bunny by Dorothy Kunhardt
  10. Love you Forever by Robert Munch
How many of these favorites do you have at home? If you haven't read them yet, consider checking them out at your local library!

During the month of March, we will collect gently used children and adult books for Cornerstone, a program which helps domestic abuse victims in Edina and neighboring cities. Please feel free to donate both children and adult books in the collection boxes located outside the office. 
Some days everything clicks, and other days it feels as if whatever you plan to do turns into a disaster. This can be at work, at home, at school or even on a vacation.
And when you put your child or children in the mix, layers of additional challenges appear. How do we develop strategies to cope with times like this?
How can you turn a bad day into a good day? Or better yet, how can you minimize the number of bad days (or moments) you actually have? The answers could be:
  1.          Create balance in your life
  2.          Think ahead - be prepared
  3.          Don't let small matters stress you
  4.          Be responsible
  5.          Play more
The list could go on and on. But I want to talk about number 5 - Play more. We have written many articles on the importance of play in your child's life. But we haven't written about the importance of play in your life as an adult. Play could be the key to creating the balance that most of us are looking for.
I recently reread a book I had purchased over a decade ago called The Playful Adult: 500 Ways to Lighten Your Spirit and Tickle Your Soul by Sue Baldwin. It reminded me that "We can't feel stressed and relaxed at the same time. So, given all the intensities in life, it is vital to our physical, emotional and spiritual well-being that we find ways to compensate for the pressures we face. When we become adults, many people find that they can't easily play. Or they decide that they can play only on the weekends. But in reality, we need to try to achieve balance on a daily basis."
The great thing about being parents of young children is that, if we have the right mindset, we can integrate play into our own lives as we interact with our children. After all, play is thing children most like to do. And their play can definitely become our play if we let it. "Consider it a great honor when your child wants to play with you. And in return, give your child the gift of being your playful, childlike self!" wrote Sue Baldwin.
But, in addition to playing with your child, carve out playtime for yourself. You will be better at everything you do if you take some time to play in the way that brings you joy. Here are a few examples of play from Sue Baldwin's book.
  • Turn on certain music that makes you happy
  • On a rainy day, curl up under a favorite blanket and read until you get sleepy, and then take a nap
  • Sit next to a stream or lake and skip rocks
  • Turn a somersault on your bed
  • Soak your washcloth in hot water and give yourself a facial
  • Play the game "remember when" to relive funny memories
  • Go bowling, fishing or golfing
Most of all, create time for yourself and  recognize it as play! You need it and deserve it!!
Now-3/12 Tropical Beach Party, MN Zoo, Apple Valley
Now-3/26  Dr. Seuss' The Sneetches , Children's Theatre, Mpls
3/4 First Free Saturday: Kids' Film Festival, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis
3/10-3/26 The Velveteen Rabbit, Stages Theatre, Hopkins
3/11 Irish Day Running Races, Various Locations
3/17 St. Patrick's Day Parade, St. Paul
3/17-3/19 Irish Dance Celebrations, Landmark Center, St. Paul

Anna Wilson was recently featured in  MN Parent  magazine's "The art of the daycare drop-off" article.  Read her tips  on how to have a successful school drop-off with your child.

Especially for Children
3300 Edinborough Way
Edina MN 55435
(952) 835-0505

Center Directors:
Anna Wilson 
Samantha Baker
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