Hello, Redbud families! You all have been in my mind and my heart. Here’s to keeping ourselves and our loved ones together, and continuing to do it as best we know how. Please make sure you are being kind and forgiving to yourself at this time–we’re all learning how to make this work as we go along, and it’s not something that comes easily to anyone. I promise you are doing a fantastic job.
In today’s teacher message, I read a Redbud room favorite: More More More Said the Baby, by Vera B. Williams. I also added in a small tidbit about consent around touching–now more so than ever, you might find that your little one is craving touch and closeness more often. Depending on your needs or your little one’s needs, touches and snuggles may not be the best option in the moment (and I promise it is okay when that happens!), so it may be a good idea to practice with your Redbud kid saying yes and no to touch. Prioritize closeness with your child when you can, and when it isn’t an option, you can work on their consent skills! Lastly, a technical note: I recorded this video differently than my previous ones, and unfortunately the volume is quite low. Feel free to turn it up all the way! https://www.youtube.com/watch?
Today’s suggested activities:
- We know that full-body movement and play is a large part of how small children gather information about themselves and the world around them. So, mindful movement activities are a way to help them grow their awareness of their bodies’ capabilities, in addition to being soothing and centering. For example, think about how you feel after a good stretch!–this is the same idea. With your little one, choose some soothing music and do restorative movements together: front bends, leg stretches, twisting your body. If you’re feeling more adventurous, here is a link that provides suggestions for some tandem yoga: https://www.yogiapproved.com/
yoga/practice-yoga-active- toddler/ Also, consider gently and continuously squeezing different parts of your child’s body for 10 seconds at a time, starting with feet, legs, hips, hands, arms, shoulders, and work your way up the body to the head, with one palm on your child’s forehead and one at the back of their head. All of these exercises can help reorganize your child if they’re experiencing disorganization by engaging their proprioception, or the underappreciated sense of the positionality and movement of our bodies. It’s not all just about smell, taste, touch, sight, and hearing!
- If you recall, we Redbud teachers would have mark-making tools–markers, crayons, oil pastels, etc.–available for children nearly every morning during choice time. If your Redbud kid likes drawing, one way you can help them deepen their engagement is to create a story with them about the images they are creating. You can start with asking them open-ended questions; a simple “what’s that?” is a good way to begin. Then, help them expand by asking more “wh” questions: “Where is it?” “What is it doing?” “Who else is there?” Typically, before you know it, you’ve got the makings of a story as you continue to ask questions! Allow your Redbud to dictate to you, and you can read it back to them as you go along. When you’re finished, you can congratulate yourselves on authoring your own story! Consider storing them away so that you can take them out and read them as often as you’d like.
Thanks, everyone! See you next time! Yours,
-Naima for Team Redbud