Life with 4 kids 6 and under. Our trip to pick up Tonito in China is: mid-March 2008 through April 12. Our trips to pick up Ricky in Ethiopia are in June and August of 2010.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Visiting the preschool classes! Vivi and her violin!

We were so excited to show ita and ito the kid's preschool! The teachers graciously invited us in and let us read books in each of the kids' classrooms. Here's Tonito's classroom, with Miss J- they are taking turns being meteorologists, and discussing the highs and lows of the day. They also are learning to count to 100 and are already in the 70's. Tonito fits in really well and it amazes me that a year and a half ago he didn't speak any English!

In his classroom he has a nature/science table (see the aquarium I donated?:) and he loves to look at the bugs and pinecones, seeds, acorns, etc. They have some great magnet manipulatives too, and some fun texture boards.

Here is the reading corner- each family made up a little poster of family pictures so when they are reading they can be surrounded by loved ones. Tonito prefers the computer next tot he reading center:), but he does like to show people his picture. He also loves to play with the cars with his buddies, and likes to build things with the blocks. He's a little bit of a class clown because he is so silly, although his teacher says he is good at listening too.

Miss J took a picture for Tonito with his ito and ita- he was so proud! It a read a book about cars and Tonito told the class how he drove in a car for a loooooong time to Mexico. I wonder how long 24 hours in a car feels for a little kid? It must feel like forever:).

Next we went to Vivi's room. Vivi was showing us the different centers and I forgot to take pictures! Her favorite activities are the art projects, drawing pictures and writing letters, the easel, the puzzles, and pretending things with her friends. She likes to organize situations ("let's pretend the cat broke his leg and it's an emergency!"). Both Vivi and Tonito love having friends to play with!
Maya is the baby of the class, since she has an August birthday and because she is a little peanut. Despite her little size, her teachers say she likes to have long conversations with her 2 girlfriends (who knows what they are talking about!?:). Her classmates look enormous next to her! Of course she wanted to sit in my lap the whole time, so I sat on the rug and sang songs with them, and ita read a couple of books.
Her teachers are saints. Seriously. Every single time I go into read (which is at least a couple of times a month) there is always one kid crying about some invisible problem, someone just peed in their pants and needs to be changed (this is the age of getting rid of diapers- imagine potty training 12 kids at once!!??), someone is tired because it is already 1pm and they are ready for nap, someone incessantly is asking for their mommy, and then 4-5 kids sit with me and listen to the books. When circle time turns into pandemonium, the best turnaround activity is for me to sing- in my loudest voice- one of the greatest hits: twinkle, itsy bitsy spier, abc, wheels on the bus, head and shoulders, etc.
After naps, it is time for Vivi's violin lesson. Vivi has been asking to play the violin since she was 2 years old and saw a Cri-cri video of little animals playing the violin. She used to pretend play it with her arms when she could barely talk! I had been promising her that I would find a teacher that would teach her, and finally I found a great woman who uses the Suzuki method, and agreed to take on Vivi. She is still on the kleenex box violin (and has been for a month) until she learns the different twinkle variations, the notes, the rhythms, the parts of the violin, how to take care of it, how to stand and hold it, etc. It is hard work! Suzuki method is very parent-involved, and every day I need to practice with her how to hold the bow and the posture of the violin under her chin, etc. Vivi really, really, really likes it and begs me to practice with her. She wants a really violin so badly its like a magnet in class. Her hands can't stop touching her teacher expensive violin and we have to focus her attention and what she is learning, and promise her that soon we will rent a real one (she asks me every day when she gets her real one). With all of this practice at home, Tonito is now begging to play the drums. Our promise to Tonito after much negotiations: when he gets his cast off he gets to do 3 things. 1) take swimming lessons 2) take kung-fu (he is way more excited than I am about this one!) and 3) learn to play the drums. He came up with a challenging list for mommy to fulfill!!


Anonymous said...

You know, I never heard about the kleenex box violin! What a great invention!

Heather BT said...

I have ben so remiss on visiting all my blog buddies, FB stole me away! I totally missed out on the surgery!
Anyway, We were able to get Acer an ION professional adult kit. It's electronic, and downsizable, simply by moving the drum bars down on the posts. The cost is not too much more than a child's size acoustic set, but this can be moved up as Acer grows. It was about $299 or so. We found ours at Costco. ION has a website, so check them out for where you might find them.
There are also drum videos on you tube, and DVD's available Acer watches those a lot, and can tell the 80 or so videos we have favorited apart by sound or beat.
Acer spends HOURS a day on the drums, but I have the sounds turned down on his headphones. Yes, there are headphones, and all I hear is the tic tic toc of the sticks hitting the pads.
If you get one, let me know and I'll have Acer send him a pair of drumsticks!
Take care