Friday, November 20, 2009

Woodside's First Annual 5K Walk/Run

We are grateful for all those who made the First Annual Woodside School 5k Walk/Run possible this year. This was a fun even that benefited the Woodside School community.
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Pumpkins on Parade!

In late October the children in the kindergarten class worked on creating their own jack-o-lanterns. Much thought and effort went into this process. Ms. Recke carefully opened all the small pumpkins so that the children could remove the seeds and inside material to prepare the pumpkins for carving. When the pumpkins were ready the children brought their drawings and pumpkins to Ms. Recke who carved each pumpkin according to each child's specifications. The three day afternoon class saw all that was happening in the kindergarten and was quite intrigued. They were pleasantly surprised when visited by a pumpkin parade!
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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The past few weeks have been a busy time at Woodside School. The children were excited to share their Halloween adventures with friends and are already thinking about the upcoming holiday season. We welcomed a visit from the NAEYC during the last week of October. Classes have been observing the changes in our natural environment. Some of the classes enjoyed walks to the cranberry bogs and the kindergarten ventured out on their field trip to Plimoth Plantation. We also welcomed families and sponsors to our first annual 5K Walk/Run to begin the month of November. Please stay tuned for photos and more details about all that is happening at Woodside School!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Importance of Play

Today the current educational trend is to emphasize standardized testing and the preparation needed to ready children for these tests. This work has filtered all the way down to what are being called Pressure-cooker Kindergartens. At Woodside School we believe that a child’s work is play. Play in an enjoyable, voluntary, purposeful and spontaneously chosen activity. It is often creative, involving critical thinking and problem solving skills. Play is linked to growth in memory, self regulation (self-control), oral language and symbol recognition. Play also contributes to the development of literacy skills and academic capabilities in other areas such as math and scientific inquiry. Every decision about our daily routine and activities is made thoughtfully, with specific purpose and a focus on play based, developmentally appropriate learning objectives. Extensive information regarding curriculum is available in our resource room. We are also working on NAEYC Classroom Portfolio's that document all the learning opportunities available to children each day at Woodside School. Your children are learning so much every day!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Beach Plum Jelly

One of the many traditions that has developed over time at Woodside School is that of making beach plum jelly. We are fortunate to have beach plum trees thriving on our playground. The process is not complicated yet there are many steps and much learning that takes place as the children work together to create this delicacy for their families and all the classes at Woodside.

First the children learn about beach plums.

Each child is given a collection basket.

Final instructions are given before the harvesting begins.

Once the plums are harvested the work begins. The plums must be picked over removing stems, leaves and twigs and then checked for any imperfections. After careful inspection they are washed, mashed and cooked on the stove.

Next the plums are boiled and then transferred into a cheesecloth lined sieve to drain over night.

It is through this process that the juice, necessary to make the jelly, is extracted from the plums.

Sugar is added to the juice and it is returned to the stove.

Next the jelly mixture is poured into prepared jars to set up.

In the classroom the children used watercolors to paint decorative lid covers. They also worked carefully on labels for their jelly. Notes were written to the other classes as the children prepared to present their gifts to the younger children at Woodside School.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

New Routines

The first week of shortened days went well. Both children, families and teachers were happy to return to school. Over the next weeks we will be working on developing our classroom communities with an emphasis on establishing routines, understanding safety rules and supporting the children and families as they become accustomed to new expectations. The following video will provide an overview a typical day at Woodside School.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Back to School

It was a busy summer at Woodside School. We have been working on completing our NAEYC Classroom Portfolios that document all the learning that happens at Woodside each day. These portfolios are one part of the re-accreditation process that we are currently undergoing. Many hours have been spent organizing photos, writing descriptions, gathering documentation and thoughtfully reflecting on the work we do to prepare children to enter the larger community. We have all worked together to clean and organize the classrooms and plan for the upcoming weeks as we begin again. However, it wasn't all work this summer. Two pizza parties took place in order to provide families with an opportunity to reconnect and enjoy each others' company. Fun was had by all. Planning was also underway for our first annual Woodside 5K Walk/Run. We hope you will join us for this fun family event on November 1, 2009.

It is hard to believe that the Summer is fading and we are entering a new school year. We are looking forward to developing our classroom communities, reconnecting with all of our returning families and welcoming new families. It was a pleasure to see so many families at our orientation evenings and visiting days. We are happy to hear the sounds of children in our classrooms once again.

Welcome back!

Friday, April 3, 2009


We were happy to host Mr. Yaeger Thursday afternoon for a community sing a long. All of the afternoon classes came together in the atrium at 3:15 to enjoy music together. It was a welcome end to a rainy day.

Mr. Yaeger, thank you for sharing your music with Woodside School.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Essential Traits

Essential traits that children need in order to thrive in today's world.

Mood Mastery: Becoming balanced in emotional response

Respect: Listening to others to develop understanding

Expressiveness: Talking about feelings, needs, observations, values, ideas

Passion: Developing and protecting enthusiasm and love of life

Peer Smarts: Developing positive relationships with peers

Focus: Paying attention; developing a love of learning

Body Comfort: Accepting physical traits

Caution: Thinking ahead, being accountable

Team Intelligence: Being part of a group with a sense of self

Gratitude: Encouraging gratefulness, faith and spirituality

source: Nurturing Good Children Now by Dr. Ron Taffel

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Welcome Spring!

We hope that you are all able to spend time this weekend enjoying the beautiful sunshine. Even with the unseasonably cool temperatures we have experienced we can all look forward to lush lawns and beautiful flowers as the days become warmer and we are able to enjoy springtime in New England! It is with great appreciation that we enter this season of new beginnings with the families in our Woodside community.

New beginnings often mark the ending of something that is familiar and comfortable. This is the time of year when families and children anticipate the transition from this school year to the summer and beyond. Many of the older children at Woodside have begun the Kindergarten registration process and all are aware that they will be moving on to a new classroom next year. Some children have been talking about these changes with their friends. We have reassured them that they will have many days to be with their friends at Woodside School before they move on to a new environment. Over the next weeks we will help the children stay present so that they are able to enjoy this time with their friends and teachers. As children all manage transitions and the emotions that come with those transitions differently we will provide support as they integrate all that they have learned including the following:

how to regulate their own emotions as well as how to relate to their peers.

to take turns and listen to their friends.

that friends have diverse ideas and that it is OK to have a different idea.

the importance of stopping when teachers call their name, listening to the information and then responding appropriately.

problem solving, critical thinking and communications skills.

We are thankful to have this time with your children and look forward to a wonderful spring together.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Must Reads

Some favorites from our book shelf:

Promise of Proactive Parenting by Lynne Reeves Griffin

Negotiation Generation by Lynne Reeves Griffin

Unconditional Parenting by Alfie Kohn

Punished by Rewards by Alfie Kohn

Blessings of a Skinned Knee by Dr. Wendy Mogel

Nurturing Good Children Now by Dr. Ron Taffel

How to Talk So Children Will Listen by Adele Faber

Between Parent and Child by Dr. Haim G. Ginot, Alice Ginot, and H. Wallace Goddard

Sunday, February 22, 2009


We have decided to add blogging to our efforts to keep our families and the greater community updated on all that we do here at Woodside School. Please consider that this is a work in progress. We appreciate comments and questions and look forward to sharing our observations and perspectives via this method of communication. We will update as often as time allows. Please check out our links and lists on the sidebar as we intend to update them regularly.