decluttered and organized living space

New Year…Decluttered Year!

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January 2019 – Prestige Preschool Academy

Happy New Year! Let’s be honest, we all have that one junk drawer in our home that absolutely drives us crazy! Or that one closet that has become the catch-all for wrapping paper and clothes that need to be donated to charity. I can say I have both of those areas that catch my attention every day, but I seem overwhelmed by how to begin to declutter that I ignore the messy elephant in the room. So, with the New Year upon us it is finally time to have a Decluttered Year!

Let’s get rid of the clutter and have a less frazzled atmosphere to enjoy the calm. In my quest to have an organized and clutter-free home, I looked to the internet for tips and tricks. Seems as though there are a lot of others out there who are in the same boat as I am who are looking for help with this situation because there are a ton of articles and videos about ways to declutter. I picked out the top 5 tips that spoke to my messiness and bad habits, and thought I’d share with you here.

  • Drop-Off Spot

-Find a spot in each room that has the traffic pattern where items are dropped off when entering the room. By having a basket or tray readily available to catch those pesky little items, they will be less likely to be tossed in other places in that room. Spend 5 minutes at the end of your day to put those items in their proper place.

  • Clear Countertops

-Only allow items that are necessary to be displayed on the counter. All kitchen appliances don’t need to be on the counter. Put those in a cupboard or pantry and bring them out as needed.

-Place a paper tray on the counter at the area where you tend to pile papers. By doing so, you will have a tray full of papers that you can then take to your place of filing.

  • Donate to Charity

-Keep a basket labeled with DONATE in your laundry room. When you come across items that your kiddo has outgrown or no longer needs, place it in the basket. If the laundry room is close to your garage, then you’re more than halfway there to placing the basket in your car.

  • Clothes & Closet

-Dedicate a day to pull out everything from your clothes drawer and closet. This is the perfect opportunity to look through items you no longer use or want. Place those items in the charity basket located in your laundry room. Once you have looked through your items, now it’s time to put them back, but this time fold and place them in a way that you can visually see what it is.

-Pre-purchase bins or baskets to help with small or loose items that can contain possible re-clutter (that is a word, isn’t it?).

  • Children’s Room and Toys

-Oh boy, this is a big one! Start with decluttering their room and / or playroom first. Be sure to have that charity basket nearby because I can guarantee that it will get filled with toys that they’ve out-grown or they no longer play with. Dare I say, let’s rid our house of all those toys that come in kids’ meals?!?

-Once you’ve decluttered and used that handy-dandy charity basket, now put back items that are necessary. Have a clear purpose and perspective of what you want and need the room to look like. Keep every day items out on a shelf or in a basket, all other items should be in a closet or drawer.

-Teach your kiddo how to keep their area clean and decluttered. Use a chore chart if needed.

So, this doesn’t seem too hard to do. Right? Well, I am on my way to using these top 5 tips to help with my decluttering for the New Year. How about you?

6 Ways Cooking With Kids Can Boost Literacy Skills

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My children love to help in the kitchen. And while it’s not something I have the time (or patience!) for every day, I recognize the learning value of cooking together. From toddlers to teenagers, cooking offers a practical, hands-on way for kids to:

  • Practice an important life skill.
  • Develop mathematical understanding (measuring ingredients, setting oven temperature, etc.).
  • Further their scientific knowledge (observing change).
  • Apply their reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills.

Encouraging literacy skill development as you cook together is easy when you allow it to flow naturally from what you’re doing. So, rustle up your favorite kid-friendly recipes (our Kids Cooking activity book has 30 great suggestions!) and give these simple ideas a try.

1. Make a shopping list together

Before you begin, name the items you’ll need with your child. Independent writers can jot down a list for you and you can entice pre-readers with a paper and a pen, just like the ones you are using. Sit beside your little one as you write your shopping list, saying aloud what you are writing as you add each item to the list. Your child will be sure to imitate you and will learn an important purpose of writing in the process. Younger kids also enjoy ticking off the items from the list once you’re at the store.

2. Read the recipe together

Recipes provide a wonderful introduction to instructional texts. Older children can read the ingredient list, gather the necessary ingredients, and read the recipe instructions aloud, step-by-step, as you go. Keep it simple for little ones. For example, “A recipe tells us what we need to make our cupcakes, and how to make them. It says we need flour, here’s the flour…” 

3. Taste ingredients

Sometimes when cooking together, I’ll ask my daughters if they’re brave enough for a blind taste test. To play, simply ask your child to cover her eyes and open her mouth. Then, offer a small taste of one of the ingredients you’re cooking with and invite her to guess which it is. It’s a great way to get your kids talking about different categories of foods (spices, fruit, dairy product, etc.), as well as textures (smooth, lumpy, crunchy, etc.) and flavors (sweet, spicy, sour, salty, etc.) and it provides a physical connection between the senses and the descriptive words used. 

4. Grow vocabulary

There are so many interesting words to learn when cooking! Names of ingredients — cinnamon or saffron — as well as processes, such as whisking and dicing, measurements and temperatures. Hearing and seeing these words used within a real-life application, equips your child to better understand and remember the words and their meanings.

5. Encourage younger children to notice environmental print

Environmental print is all around us. It’s the name given to print that appears on signs, labels and logos. Encouraging preschoolers and beginning readers to notice environmental print helps them to learn that reading involves not just letters and sounds but pictures and context too. Asking your three-year-old to find the cornflakes from among the cereal boxes in your pantry, or your six-year-old to find the all-purpose flour that sits next to the self-raising flour on the shelf, is inviting them to take notice of environmental print.

6. Read a story

While the jelly sets or your cake bakes, why not sit together and enjoy a story related to food or the dish you are cooking? 

MORE: Bake Giant Pretzel ‘Bones’ Inspired by Clifford the Big Red Dog

Inviting your child to spend time cooking with you is a delicious way to encourage literacy learning through all of the sounds, sights, and tastes in the kitchen. Hopefully, the end-product of your cooking time will be delicious too!

Please visit our website to learn more about our Culinary Artist Academy

Article by Christie Burnett found on Scholastic Parents

WE ARE GROWING!

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COLORADO – Arvada – OPEN AND ENROLLING!

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(720) 531-7774    email:  pparvada@gmail.com

 

COLORADO – Meridian –  OPEN AND ENROLLING!

12824 Lynnfield Drive, Meridian, CO 80112 – Near Lincoln Ave.

(303) 662-1755

 

MINNESOTA –  Eden Prairie – OPEN AND ENROLLING!

9201 Mitchell Road, Eden Prairie MN   –  Mitchell Road & Pioneer Trail  

(952) 856-2690       email: ppeagan825@gmail.com

 

Call us toll-free at 855-520-5437 for more information

NEW SCHOOLS

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NEW SCHOOLS

  • Arvada, CO            720-531-7774 – OPEN
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For information, call us toll free at  855-520-5437

Prestige Preschool Academy

How Does Your Garden Grow?

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May 2018 – Prestige Preschool Academy – Start a Garden with Your Children

How Does Your Garden Grow?

 

Gardening with your children is a great bonding experience and the lessons they learn will astound you.  After harvesting a carrot from the garden you may be surprised that your “picky eater” really likes veggies.  Plus, you will be outside and exercising!

Here are some age-by-age garden ideas for your little green thumbs.

Age 2

  • Speed-garden. Toddlers and waiting don’t mix. For fast results, place a few pea or bean seeds and a slightly moistened cotton ball in a see-through plastic cup or sandwich bag (tape it to the window for maximum sun and easy viewing). “This is the absolute easiest way to begin,” says Cohen. “You’ll see sprouts within a week.” Then transfer the seedlings to a garden or container (see “No Backyard? No Problem!” below).
  • Let ’em get dirty. “Give your child a small hand trowel and let her search through the soil for worms,” says Rose Judd-Murray, a youth gardening specialist with the National Gardening Association. “She can even carefully handle the worms and measure how long they are.”

Ages 3 to 4

  • Build a bean tepee. This easy, fast-growing project makes a terrific fort. Pick a spot that gets at least six hours of sun per day. Buy five 6-foot wooden stakes (or use fallen tree branches sturdy enough to support a growing plant) and stick them a few inches into the ground, tying the stakes together at the top like a tepee. Add a bit of new soil around each stake and have kids press a few pole-bean seeds an inch or so into the ground. Sprouts will wind their way up the stakes in a couple of weeks.
  • Keep a calendar. Preschoolers are learning patience and a sense of time—concepts that can be reinforced in the garden. Use a calendar to highlight the days when you expect seeds to germinate. To add to kids’ sense of accomplishment—and make the waiting more bearable—have them put a sticker or check mark on days they water and weed.
  • Choose the right plants. For the best chance of success, pick easy-to-grow veggies such as radishes, carrots and lettuce. Seeds that are big enough for little fingers to handle easily include sunflowers, nasturtiums, beans, and peas.

Ages 5 to 6

  • Start with seedlings. For an edible haul faster, start with small veggie plants instead of seeds; kids’ feelings of accomplishment will be boosted by the quick results.
  • Create a storybook garden. Read a favorite garden-themed book and create your own garden to match. Two favorites: The Carrot Seed, by Ruth Krauss. Pick a sunny spot and plant carrot or sunflower seeds in the ground or a container (be sure to choose a place with enough room—sunflowers can grow up to 15 feet tall!). The wow factor with sunflowers makes them a special favorite with kindergarten kids.

No Backyard? No Problem

You can still grow plants in a container garden on a porch or windowsill, says gardening expert Rebecca P. Cohen. To get started, you’ll need a 12-inch-diameter bucket with good drainage (soil that’s too wet is bad for plants); potting mix; and a location with full sun every day. Or add a fun twist with containers that can be adapted for growing, such as milk cartons, baskets, plastic pails or items in the recycling bin (poke holes in your container if necessary).

Gardening at Your Local Prestige Preschool Academy 

Find your nearest Prestige Preschool Academy and see how our gardens grow!!

 

 

Read more at KidsGardening.org

From Parenting Magazine – By Charlotte Latvala

 

 

Preschoolers eating out, manners

Restaurant Tips For Kids

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April 2018 – Prestige Preschool Academy – Tips For Eating Out With Kids

Eating out With Kids

Here are some great tips for eating out with kids and enjoying the experience.  Children learn and gain confidence as they develop social skills and manners.  Learning restaurant manners at an early age will get your child off to a good start.  Prepare for a stress-free outing by using these simple tips.

Make Sure Kids Are Welcome

Not all restaurants embrace children; some are explicit about that, others are not. Play it safe and call ahead. This is a good opportunity to check that there is a children’s menu or something on the regular menu that your kids will eat.

Ease Slowly Into Fine Dining

If this is your first foray into dining out with the little ones, choose somewhere nice, not too fancy, and family-friendly. In the beginning, order just one course.  “Most parents can gauge what their children can handle,” says Jessica Ritz, creator of Taster Tots LA (tastertotsla.com), a blog that lists child-friendly restaurants with adult-friendly food in Los Angeles. “By a certain age, some kids enjoy dining role-play too, like placing a cloth napkin in their laps.”

Eat Early

An overtired or over-hungry child is no fun for anyone, so hit your favorite spot in the mid-afternoon, after your little one has had a nap, or while the Early Bird Special is still available. The restaurant will be quieter, you’ll be less likely to disturb other diners, the waitstaff will be less frazzled, and (best of all) your child won’t be exhausted.

Pack Your Own Distractions

Pack a few toys, books, tools for coloring, or anything that will keep your kids quiet and won’t make noise that will distract other diners. Murphy cautions against electronics, though. “Coloring is fine, but please leave the iPads, iPods, DS games, and any other electronic device at home. Parents want peace and quiet when they eat, but the way to get that to happen is not to reinforce that children will get to watch a movie if they scream or misbehave.

Think About Seating

Request a corner table rather than one in the middle of the room or ask your server where the least conspicuous spot in the dining room is. Your kids will be out of the way of other diners and more contained in a private area. This will also help keep any kids’ noises or disturbances from being too noticeable and make the overall experience more enjoyable.

 Always Say “Thanks”

“What better setting for adults to model and teach good manners than in restaurants?” Ritz asks. Take the opportunity to explain how important it is to say “please” and “thank you” to waiters when making a request and to say “thank you” again to the restaurant host at the end of the meal. If the kids are old enough, teach them about tipping for good service, and get them to help count out the tip. “If you can spare a minute before you leave, make an effort to tidy up your area a bit,” Ritz says. “Especially if it’s a place you want to eat at again!”

Manners for 3, 4, & 5  Year Olds is part of the Prestige Curriculum.
Taken from Parents Magazine by Kirsten Matthew.  You can read the full article here .  Copyright © 2012 Meredith Corporation..
Image:  BabyGizmo.com

 

 

Proprietary Enrichment Curriculum at Prestige Preschool Academy

By | News & Blog

Prestige students love learning about heroes, character traits, artists, composers and manners. Ask them what they learned in school and they are likely to tell you that George Washington Carver invented more than 100 products from peanuts or that helpfulness is all about cooperation! Our proprietary Enrichment Curriculum is part of the learning day at Prestige so there is no additional fee!

 


  • Baby Signing Time©
  • Handwriting Without Tears©
  • Prestige Fitness Club©
  • Manners for 3, 4 and 5 Year Olds©
  • Hooray for Heroes©
  • Artists and Composers©
  • Developing Character©
  • Prestige Reading Program©

Choosing a Preschool

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January 1, 2018 – Prestige Preschool Academy – Choosing a Preschool

CHOOSING A PRESCHOOL

 

Your little one is growing and it’s time to choose a preschool!  Here is a checklist that will help you make this important decision.  Take this list with you as you visit your local preschool or daycare.  If you want to see the preschool in action, visit before lunch or after nap time.  The first step is to call and schedule your tour!

FIRST THINGS FIRST

  • Is the location accessible to my/our home/job?
  • Do the hours fit my/our schedule?
  • Can we afford the fees including tuition, registration, co-payments, etc.?

THINGS TO LOOK SEE

  • Is the provider’s license posted and available?
  • Does the environment appear clean and safe for children?
  • Does the caregiver get down to the children’s eye level when talking?
  • Does the caregiver sit with the children, rather than away from them?
  • Is there enough equipment for all children to play with?
  • Is the staffing sufficient based on the number of children?
  • Are the children busy with fun and developmentally appropriate activities?
  • Are there security cameras?
  • Do the children sound happy and involved?
  • Is the sound level appropriate?  Too quiet or too chaotic?

THINGS TO ASK

  • What training and experience does the caregiver have?  Are CPR and first aid included in the training?
  • How does the caregiver deal with behavior problems?
  • Will they provide you with a list of parents you can contact for references?
  • Which days will the school be closed?  Holidays?
  • Do children go on field trips?  If so, what transportation is used?
  • Do the children spend time watching TV or videos?  How much?
  • Do they accept children who are ill?
  • Is there a secure drop-off/pick-up procedure?
  • Do they offer a free trial day?
  • What curriculum is used and are there regular assessments of a child’s progress?
  • What are the medical emergency procedures?
  • How are prescribed medicines handled for the children?

THE PARENT’S ROLE

  • Are parents welcome to drop in whenever their children are in their care?
  • Are parents encouraged to participate in activities?
  • How is the child’s day communicated to the parents?

HOW IT FEELS

  • Was I greeted by a friendly smile?
  • Was the person conducting the tour knowledgeable of age-appropriate practices?  Professional? Friendly?
  • Does this appear to be a warm inviting place that my child would enjoy?

We invite you to take a tour of  Prestige Preschool Academy.  Find your nearest location here !

The Value of Superhero Play

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November 3, 2017 – Prestige Preschool Academy – The Value of SuperheroPlay

The Value of Superhero Play

 

Ask a child, any child, about their favorite superhero and they will quickly name a superhero or princess—-Spiderman, Batman, Elsa, Rapunzel, Superman, Captain America…you name it! So, why the fascination with superheroes?  Is there any value in children engaged in superhero and fantasy play?  The answer is absolutely yes!

Superhero Play Supports Moral Development

The most common adult belief is that there is no importance or value in children’s fascination and type of play when it comes to superheroes. Most adults quickly dismiss it as nothing more as a common stage for young children—a frivolous type of play and fascination that children will soon outgrow.

The truth is that there has been much research to support children’s interests in these very popular and iconic characters, and how it supports various aspects of children’s development. Most of all, engaging in superhero play actually greatly supports moral development!

Superhero Play Empowers

Sometimes we view superheroes and superhero play as aggressive and potentially physically harmful, and one that promotes violence. However, adults quickly forget the values that superheroes actually instill in children. For one, superheroes give children a platform of feeling in control, empowered, and the all-mighty powers to create good in the world, a world in which they are already feeling small and powerless, and even helpless.

Superheroes, like Spiderman, Wonder Woman, and Batman, are all faced with moral dilemmas and must use their good to fight evil. In the article “Children’s Attitudes Toward Superheroes as a Potential Indicator of Their Moral Understanding” Justin F. Martin states that “superheroes often try to avoid the use of violence. They first try to resolve a situation by reasoning with villain. When that does not work and superheroes are forced to use violence, the goal is apprehension, not annihilation. Superheroes use violence only to prevent harm to others.”

Superhero Play Develops Character

According to Butler and Kratz in “From Superhero to Real-Life Hero: Encouraging Healthy Play,” when given the opportunity to connect superheroes to real-life heroes, we must “encourage healthy superhero play by creating opportunities outside of playtime to talk and read about what makes ‘good guys’ good. Qualities like determination, kindness, helpfulness, selflessness, and courage create heroes, not necessarily physical strength.”

Superhero Play Connects to Real Life

How can you help your child connect their fantasy superheroes to everyday real-life heroes like firefighters, police officers, war heroes, medical heroes, family and friends?

  • Ask them critical, and open-ended questions about how these real-life heroes are alike and different from fantasy superheroes
  • Ask children how they themselves are heroes in order to help build a healthy self-esteem
  • Continue to foster their moral development and support them as they choose right from wrong and good from bad
  • Actively help them construct a more just world

 

HOORAY FOR HEROES is part of the curriculum at Prestige Preschool Academy.  In 2016, we will introduce our favorite superheroes!

 

 

Article By:  Lisa Callejas, Assistant Director at Prestige Preschool Academy Morgan Hill
Image:  HuffingtonPost