Welcome to a new year at Friends ‘n Fun. Our mission is to help you to provide your child with experiences that are filled with adventure, exploration and discovery. We want to be in collaboration with you as we work together to support your child as he/she grows and develops during these exciting early years of childhood. We encourage you to let us know of any concerns or questions that you may have throughout the school year.
Teachers at FnF realize that parents know their children better than anyone. It is you who have seen them smile their first smile; it is you who celebrated their first words and first steps; it is you who have nursed them through illness and accidents, and it is you who continue to encourage, support, comfort and love them. Thank you for sharing your children with us and know that we take the trust you have extended us very seriously.
Please always feel free to chat with us about the day’s events.
We are all looking forward to an exciting year and all of the journeys ahead of us.
This newsletter has a lot of information regarding upcoming events and getting started in our program. PLEASE take time to read it and make notes on your own family’s calendar so that your family does not miss out on important dates, etc.
Some of you will have noticed that one of our co-teachers, Jamie Parker, has not returned this Fall. Jamie’s plan was to eventually become a kindergarten teacher and with the change to full day kindergarten this year she decided to give it a go. We will miss her and wish her well !!!……………
……….And are delighted to announce that Rebecca Franklin will be joining our team of teachers! Rebecca has been a part of our school community for many years. Initially as a parent to Charlotte and Estelle, who attended FnF, and then as an occasional substitute – and always a dear friend! Rebecca has been a Para – Educator in schools in BVSD and has a background in both Human Development and Special Needs. We welcome her with excitement!
In addition to Rebecca joining our team we are very pleased to announce that Sandy Weeks, the founder of Friends’n Fun, has returned following an extended absence, to contribute her experience, expertise and support!! She is scheduled to be with us on MWF afternoons – but she will be around in other ways and at other times as well!
We are all excited to our work together with your children!
September’s Journey –
The beginning of a new school year presents us with an opportunity to see ourselves not only as individuals but also as a part of something bigger: a family, a school setting, a community.
“A child is born a first time, and then, through the long and difficult process of constructing his identity, it is as if he is born again. In this process, he gives himself a face, a body, gestures, movement, speech, thought, feelings, imagination, fantasy; in short, the awareness of being and the means of expressing his “me-ness” which is absolutely essential for becoming autonomous and distinguishing ourselves from other people and things – people and things we live and interact with and from which, little by little, we draw most of the raw material with which we create our own identity. To recognize ourselves and to be recognized. But a child’s most sought-after goal is to recognize himself in others, and to find in others (objects and the natural world as well) parts of himself.”
When beginning the process of planning for the start of our new school year the teachers became attracted to the idea of “community.” We know that at the beginning of a school year there are old friends and new friends and a shuffling of schedules which results in the forming of a “new” school community. We were inspired not only by the idea of a focus on our school community but also the idea of the larger community FnF is a part of. The community of our old town neighborhood. We discovered a book, THE BIG UMBRELLA by Amy June Bates, that feels like a good jumping off point. The symbolic imagery of a red umbrella that expands to shelter, connect and include each other and the larger world around us felt perfect!
We look forward to the journey start and will be excited to see how it grows and evolves! Stay tuned……………………………!
STUDIO DISCOVERY FRIDAYS kick off this upcoming Friday August 30th with a focus on TREES!! We will center our discovery and exploration on these magnificent gifts of nature!
SMALL GROUPS: We began our small groups this week. Check out the bulletin board to see who is/are your child’s Small Group Teacher and companions!
Greetings & Goodbyes –
Entering the school environment is a transition time and the most significant one of the day. Children and parents enter the school with multiple needs and feelings. There can be enthusiasm, excitement, anxiety, sadness, confusion and frustration – just to name a few. Teachers see their role at this time as facilitators of the morning transition. We make ourselves available to hold a child during a tearful or joyful good-bye, receive and transfer information from and to parents, reassure everyone that things will be okay, and help children connect with activities, materials and each other when they are ready. Parents tend to feel more comfortable going off to start their day once their children are engaged in an activity. On the other hand, most children are preoccupied with the process of transitioning from home and parents to school and teachers. They are really not ready to begin something until the transition is complete. Once the parent has driven away, they are ready to look around and spend some time thinking about where they want to start.
Please speak with teachers if you would like support with your morning transition.
END OF DAY–
Friends’n Fun’s day has several schedule options. Teachers plan a variety of experiences for the groups of children who are scheduled for specific time frames. It can be confusing to all if there is an unrequested time overlap. Please help us with this by picking up your child at your scheduled end of day. If you would like to add to your schedule speak with Janet or Jane and we can plan for your child’s participation.
BITS & PIECES:
HEALTH FORMS – The State of Colorado requires us to have a recent physical for each child at FnF. This physical must be updated annually. Jane will let you know if you are missing any paperwork and when it needs to be updated.
PERMISSION FORM– Licensing requires the permissions page of your child’s paperwork to be initialed and dated annually. Jane will catch you to have you sign/date the permission form for this year.
INFORMATION CHANGES – Jane will be asking returning families to review their child’s enrollment forms and update any changes to: address, phone numbers, employment (and that contact information), emergency contact, physician, insurance. If any of those things change during the year, please let us know so that we have current/correct information.
MEDICATIONS – A form MUST be completed by your doctor each time he/she prescribes ANY medications to be given to your child while in our care. This includes prescriptions and over the counter meds. Please ask Jane or Janet for the medications form and have your physician complete this form and return to school with the medication(s), as we will not be able to administer any medications without it. Please note that we are not allowed to administer any homeopathic medications/remedies. THANKS!
Our nurse consultant, who keeps us up to date on so many things and helps make sure we’re on top of current information regarding children’s health, has recommended that we do not allow water bottles. Water bottles left in the cubbies, or even the refrigerator, are tempting to many children. There is a chance a child may take a drink from someone else’s water bottle and this can lead to spread of germs. Some people may also add something to their children’s water bottle that may be unsafe for another child to have (examples: vitamins; fruit juices to which other children may be allergic). Children have ready access to our water fountain whenever they need a drink and we work with the children on the best way to drink from the water fountain and sanitize it several times a day. Thank you for your help in trying to contain the spread of germs.
BACKPACKS Due to limited space in our cubby area – especially when coat season is upon us – we ask that you put a change of clothes and any other needs in your child’s cubby box instead of leaving backpacks. We know backpacks are fun but we just don’t have enough room! Thank You!
Mark your calendars and watch the Parent Board for more specifics regarding these dates.
Saturday Morning Sept 7 PARENT-TEACHER FALL CONFERENCEWatch the Parent Bulletin Board for a sign-up sheet to schedule a 15 minute Fall conference. We like to touch base with all of you early in the year to help us better support your child’s interests and needs as well as answer any further questions you might have after being at FnF for a few weeks.
Wednesday Sept. 11 FALL POTLUCK – LaMont Does Park – See notice on Parent Board
SATURDAY Nov. 23 FAMILY BRANCH CELEBRATION We will post more information closer to the event time!
CLASS LIST WITH CONTACT INFORMATION – we are working on this and will make sure everyone has a copy once it’s ready!
FRIENDS ‘N FUN SCHOOL CLOSINGS FOR 2019 -2020
September 2, 2019 Labor Day
November 28 – 29, 2019 Thanksgiving
December 23-31 & January 1 Winter Break (reopen Wed, Jan. 2nd)
January 20, 2020 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
February 17, 2020 President’s Day
March 25 – 26 – 27, 2020 Spring Break
May 25, 2020 Memorial Day
Fall Potluck Wed, Sept 11, 2019 6:00 – 7:30pm
Fall Conferences Sat, Sept 7 Morning – times TBA
Tradition Branches Gathering Sat, Nov. 23rd 1:00 – 3:00pm
Mother’s Day Tea Wed/Thur May 6th & 7th 11:00am
Please watch Channel 9 News for notices of school closings or late opening times on days of extreme snow. If you can, check Channel 9 News online for the most current updates, as the television has a delay time from when we called. We will also post closures on the “Latest & Greatest” page on our website and our Facebook page:
Phone numbers – If something should come up during off school hours call: Janet or Jane at their numbers on the class list you will be receiving.
“THE HUNDRED LANGUAGES OF CHILDREN”
Friends ‘n Fun has pursued the study of the internationally renowned philosophy of early childhood education that has been cultivated over the past 50 years in the Reggio Emilia community in northern Italy. We continually integrate this philosophy with our own- weaving them together to beautifully and holistically address the needs of our own unique community. There is so much to learn.
*******************************Welcome to Friends ‘n Fun. We hope you enjoy your journey with us. Janet, Jane, Katey & Rebecca