Dear Angie,


We are so grateful and thankful for the families we have here at EFC. Thank you for sharing in the joys of teaching and watching the children grow. Not only do we want to give thanks we would also like to give back this year.


We will be a drop off site for Toys for joys again this year. Watch for donation boxes to be out soon.



Outside play has always been an important part of our curriculum for young children.


In order to be successful with this portion of our curriculum, we need help from our families. We will need the following items here each day for winter play…

1) Snowpants/snow suit

2) Boots

3) Winter Coat

4) Hat

5) 2 pairs of gloves/mittens

6) Possibly a neckwarmer (no scarves please)

Socks are also a necessity in keep our toes warm—so please keep that in mind each day when your child gets dressed. A back-up pair is always nice if we do have a very snowy day and get wet feet. 


LABEL—LABEL—LABEL---this is so helpful to our teachers in keeping track of your child’s items!! We do not have very many things to loan to your child so please keep that in mind when you come to school. As you know, the weather can change very quickly and we want to do our best to keep giving your child the outside play that is so valuable and healthy. 

Especially For Children will be closed for Thanksgiving on Thursday & Friday, November 23 & 24. We wish you all a safe, healthy & fun Thanksgiving weekend. 


For your planning purposes, we are also closed on Monday, December 25, for Christmas and Monday, January 1, for New Year’s Day.  



November is a month we seem to spend more time in the kitchen, and this provides a great way to create family bonding and lasting memories with your children. Cooking is a skill that helps children read, do math, and organize their work logically. This Pumpkin Pie Playdough recipe is fun to make and create with!

Pumpkin Pie Playdough

5 ½ cups flour

2 cups salt

8 TSP cream of tartar

¾ cup oil

1 ½ oz pumpkin pie spice 

4 cups water

Orange food coloring if desired

Mix all ingredients together. Cook and stir over medium heat until lumps disappear. Knead the dough on floured surface until smooth. 



by Angie Williams


A growth mindset is one characterized by the view that intelligence and skill can be obtained and increased through effort. In a growth mindset, the brain is rightly understood to be malleable, and mistakes and challenges are a natural and healthy part of learning. A fixed mindset, on the other hand, views intelligence as predetermined and set. Someone with a fixed mindset sees little value in practice and effort because he or she does not think it will change outcomes. A fixed mindset can be detrimental both to the individual who does not believe he or she can be successful in a given area as well as for the one who develops an inflated view of his or her intelligence.


Because having a growth mindset is an important predictor of future success in many areas of life, it is important that adults help to foster a growth mindset in children. Psychologist and researcher Carol Dweck has studied the growth mindset in children and states, 


“If parents want to give their children a gift, the best thing they can do is to teach their children to love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning.”  


While much research and literature about the growth mindset focuses on elementary-aged and older children, adults can encourage even young children to value effort over outcomes in service of deep and lifelong learning as well as in building resiliency.


For example, these are ways to stimulate a growth mindset:


• Praising Effort 

• Accepting Failures

• Ask for Explanations

• Express the Amount of work put in

• “Your Brain is Growing”

• Praise the PROCESS!


These actions, in contrast, may discourage a growth mindset:


• Praising Outcomes

• Criticizing Failures

• Telling children the answers

• Labeling or Judging student/work

• Telling them they “tried their best”

• Praising the PERSON


We can also share stories with children of characters (real or imagined) who failed and persevered:

Young children may have a natural propensity for a growth mindset and less developed definitions of success and failure than older children and adults. Caregivers can thus encourage participation in varied activities and experiences that engage all of their senses, deepening children’s understanding of the world, capitalizing on these assets of their developmental stage, and expanding children’s belief in their own potential.  





9/30-11/4 Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular, MN Zoo, Apple Valley

Now-2/24 (Saturdays) Night Trains, TC Model Railroad Museum, St Paul

11/11-1/7 How The Grinch Stole Christmas, Children's Theatre, Minneapolis

11/16-12/31 Winter Lights, Mn Landscape Arboretum, Chanhassen

11/17-12/27 Disney’s Beauty and the Beast JR., Stages Theatre, Hopkins

11/18 and 11/25 Visit Santa’s Reindeer, Bachman’s, Mpls

11/23 Drumstick Dash 10k and Cranberry Cruise 1 Mile, Lake Harriet, Minneapolis

11/23 Turkey Day 5k, Minneapolis

11/24-11/26 Excelsior Christkindlsmarkt, Excelsior

winter_lights_2023_header image


Just a reminder that we are still interested in hearing from you through our Sharing Family Culture Survey!

Especially for Children - Coon Rapids

8885 Evergreen Blvd

Coon Rapids, MN 55433

(763) 784-0901

Center Director

Lisa Ward