"In this classroom, relationships are fostered, families are respected, and children are honored.
In this classroom, nature's gifts are valued and children's thoughts are captured.
In this classroom, learning is alive and aesthetic beauty is appreciated." -Unknown

Monday, February 11, 2013

10+ Favorite Preschool Posts

Today marks one year since I began the For the Children blog and can't believe all that's happened in that year, but before I get all mushy, I wanted to highlight the 10 posts that have been viewed the most this past year along with a few of my faves.

Coming in at #1: Preschool Time: Welcoming Parents and Helping Them Feel Connected. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/08/preschool-time-welcoming-parents-and.html As of this date, this post has received 4,719 views and it came out on 8/9/12. I believe this served as a guide for educators and providers of practical means to really connect with families. This post continues to get lots of traffic. 

Preschool Time: Welcoming Parents and Helping Them Feel Connected
#2: Our Top 5 Outdoor Musical Activities with Children was all the rage for awhile. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/our-top-5-outdoor-musical-activities.html This post was a hit with all of our friends who are passionate about outdoor play for kids and doesn't surprise me as being among the top contenders. 

Our Top 5 Outdoor Musical Activities

#3: Christmas, Preschool Style is one of our most recent posts, but still managed to have a huge following. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/12/christmas-preschool-style.html It highlighted some of the seasonal activities we were busy doing in our program.

Christmas, Preschool Style
#4: 10+ Ways to Know It's a High Quality Program is one of my favorite posts. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/07/10-ways-to-know-its-high-quality-program.html This post had the most photos included in it and was one I had wanted to do for a long time. I had been asked many times what parents should look for when trying to find the best fit for their child's needs and put lots of effort into compiling and expressing the information. I feel that this served as a guide for educators and providers, as well as for parents. 

10 Ways to Know It's a High Quality Program
Another fun one we included came in at #5: Tissue Paper Rainbow Art. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/tissue-paper-rainbow-art.html This was such a fun activity and one that always revealed surprisingly beautiful results. 

Tissue Paper Rainbow Art

#6: How to Lure Them In served as a guide to setting up the activities and environment in an aesthetically pleasing way to entice the children to check it out. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/02/how-to-lure-them-in.html In the post we shared how to set up provocations and how to use natural materials to enhance the activity. Another one of my faves.

How to Lure Them In

#7: Preschool: Cutting with Scissors was another fairly recent post that received lots of attention. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/09/preschool-cutting-with-scissors.html In this post we discussed providing children with the opportunity to use scissors, how to teach them scissors safety, as well as our Mr. Smiley approach to helping with the proper hold while cutting. 

Preschool: Cutting with Scissors

#8: We Tip Our Hats to You, Dr. Seuss!! This post wasn't about an activity we had done in our classroom, but was a glimpse into the world of Dr. Seuss through the traveling exhibit "The Art of Dr. Seuss: A Retrospective and International Touring Exhibition". http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/02/we-tip-our-hats-to-you-dr-seuss.html We were extremely fortunate to have this exhibit visit us locally and was honored be able to share some of the highlights of it with you. 

We Tip Our Hats to You, Dr. Seuss!!
#9: Flower Petal Sun Catchers was another one of my favorites. In it we shared how to use fresh flowers, paper plates, contact paper, and glue to create a beautiful display in your window. Each sun catcher was uniquely different and dazzling. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/flower-petal-sun-catchers.html

Flower Petal Sun Catchers
And completing our top 10 list at #10: Kool-Aid Dying Play Silks: A Colorful Adventure. This was another favorite of mine. I'm always amazed at how beautiful the colors come out and love the process of creating something so vibrant that I know will be a hit with the kiddos. This wasn't an activity to do with the children, as there would be some safety concerns, but served as a tutorial for adults. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/08/kool-aid-dying-play-silks-colorful.html

Kool-Aid Dying Play Silks
There are two more posts that didn't make the most viewed list, that are quite meaningful to me. The first is It's More Than JUST Buttons. This post was dedicated to my Grandma Stout. She wasn't a lady of high education, but possessed a loving heart and a dedication to spending time with me and truly listening to me. She inspired me in such a way, that I believe my love for teaching probably stemmed from the time we spent together. This post has received some of the most comments so far as it prompted others to share stories of individuals who inspired them, also. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/02/its-more-than-just-buttons.html

It's More than JUST Buttons
The other post that I knew I wanted to share is purely for sentimental reasons. It was my first one. And It Begins... It's a very simple blog post. I shared my heart and passion for the kids and teaching. http://msbarbarasblog.blogspot.com/2012/02/and-it-begins.html

And It Begins...
I really had no idea what I was getting myself into. I knew I loved seeing new ideas and wanted to share with others. I knew I wanted to promote high quality standards and developmentally appropriate practices. I knew I wanted to do something creative and inspirational with all the photos I was constantly taking. 

I just needed a little nudge that I received from my friends: Shannon Small Wonders Preschool of Fall RiverJula Redding Cooperative Preschool, and Christina. Thanks, friends!!

I had not thought of creating a Facebook page for the For the Children blog, which made a huge difference in our following and has given me the opportunity to post lots more photos than I'd include in a blog post, until talking to a friend I made during this process, Jackie from Happy Hooligans. Jackie patiently walked me through the process and invited me to join her at two different Facebook groups for more inspiration and information. Thanks so much, Jackie!! 

I had never heard of PicMonkey, but love the difference it makes with the titles of my posts and the ability it gives me to watermark all my photos to link back to my blog. Thanks, PicMonkey!

I've met lots of amazing people along this journey and look forward to continuing this adventure with you. Thank you for walking this path with me. 

As I click on the Publish key, we had 36,270 visits. I'm humbled and honored. Here's to many more!

Much love,  



  1. Happy Blogaversary, Barbara! What a trip down memory lane this is! I remember and loved so many of those posts. Your button post especially hit home with me. I can't believe it's been a year, and at the same time it feels like you've been here forever. Remember our late night chats getting things up and running? What a hoot! I absolutely loved giving you a hand, and it's hilarious because I was so new to it all myself, I'm amazed that I was able to even help you! lol Congratulations on hitting your one year mark, Barbara! You're a blessing to moms, teachers and carers everywhere!

    1. Thanks so much, Jackie. You were definitely an integral part in getting me started and keeping me motivated.

  2. Happy Anniversary. Looking at all these fun posts over the years is so inspiring and fun. May the future be filled with many wonderful shares.

    1. Thanks so much, JoAnn. Thanks for joining us for the journey.

  3. Lots of great ideas here. I really like the cutting one as it is an area my daughter has been working on.

    1. Thanks for your feedback, Vicky. Mr. Smiley always makes cutting easier for the little ones.

  4. Happy aniversary with the blog. I watched and its' really amazing, so much ideas you share. I'm living in Belgium, Brussels, working with 2,5 to 3 years old, in my classroom, and your blog is a new inspiration to me!

    1. Thanks so much, Kris. I love seeing new ideas and new twists on things I've done before. Thanks for joining us.

  5. Happy Anniversary! This is a great collection of ideas!! I would love to invite you to link up in our Share It Saturday linky party. We have lots of creative bloggers sharing with us each week and you would fit right in! http://www.sugaraunts.com/2013/02/share-it-saturday-7-and-our-week-in.html
    We are also inviting contributors to join our collaborative Share It Saturday Group board on Pinterest. It's a great way to reach out to new viewers. The link is on our post. Hope to see you there!
    Colleen at Sugar Aunts

  6. Thanks, Colleen. I'll definitely check it out!!

  7. Congratulations on making it one year!! What a wonderful round-up of posts. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!

  8. That’s true dear!! Finding best school is not easy task for kids. Many things have to notice before leaving our child there. Best facilities and healthy environment for the child should be available there for their comfort. I have heard that Phoenix preschool give these facilities to the kids. Is it true?