At GAP, we have a Nudelglas (MonTues class) and a Good Jar (ThursFri class).
At the end of each day, we take time to reflect on some of the positive things that happened during the day. The aim is two-fold: to notice good behaviour and to think of things we are grateful for.
Children and teachers come up with all sorts of things, for example:
We enjoyed going to the park in the beautiful sunshine, so we are grateful to have such a nice park and great weather.
Alex was especially helpful at tidy up time and picked up all the blocks that got left behind.
I saw Leon being a good friend and waiting for a friend to put on their shoes before going outside to play together.
Christiane gave a big beautiful smile at roll call and it made me feel happy.
I felt lovely and peaceful when we were all sitting together for morning tea.
We felt thankful to the teacher who made us delicious warm Kinder-Tee to drink when we came inside from the cold weather.
Susanne held the door open for her friend, and that was kind.
Everyone did such lovely dances and were careful not to bump into others, which was respectful.
We are so grateful to have wonderful friends and families who show us that they love us.
For each positive thing, we put a piece of dry pasta in our Nudelglas or a note in the Good Jar.
Want to try this at home?
Decorate your jar. Prepare a handy bowl or box of dried pasta or paper slips and a pen, ready nearby.
With help of das Nudelglas or Good Jar you can recognise the child’s and each others’ good deeds and things you are grateful for, each evening (e.g. at dinner time or any other time that suits you).
Once the jar is full, reward yourselves with a little party to celebrate, another fun activity or a delicious fruit salad you make together.
The gratitude/good jar is a way to highlight children’s positive behavior and goes beyond rewarding the child for completing age-appropriate chores and instead encourages the child to work at being kind, generous, grateful and helpful.
Hallo Papa! It’s time to help your child prepare for Mothers’ Day…. and the GAP teachers are hereby offering their loving support for mums and dads to guide you through with craft and breakfast ideas.
Hopefully all GAP children will have received their second envelope in time, as this contains some of the things that Papa and children will find useful in making the following Mothers Day gifts. (If you aren’t enrolled at GAP or your envelope is late arriving, we hope you can find or substitute craft items from home.)
Lisa3 has provided the complete instructions and materials in your child’s envelope so you can help your child to create a paper flower garden. For non-GAP families, you will need a variety of coloured paper and here are the instructions for you.
Make a beautiful rainbow heart ornament
Here is Gerda’s video to show you how to make a rainbow heart ornament. You will need cardboard, paper and a few colours of paint for this. If you don’t have paint, coloured markers or pencil crayons could do the trick. Or there might be enough coloured paper left over from your paper flower garden.
Here’s a super simple and really cute breakfast idea so children can make something pretty much all by themselves for Mama on Mothers’ Day (and if that goes well, then they can make it on all the other days afterwards!)
This is toast with peanut butter, banana and raisins. I guess the luxury version has almond butter, banana and choc chips. I have it on good authority that Germans love peanut butter though, so go nuts! Serve warm!
Adding a little paper heart (or a small flower from the garden) at the side of the plate will elevate your creation from “breakfast” to “present”.
The response you are looking for from Mum is “Oooh, lecker!” (Oooh, yummy!)
And here’s what to say in German
You’d think “ich liebe dich” would be just perfect… but that’s only used between, well, lovers. You wouldn’t say it to a child, nor would a child say it to their parent. So what CAN you say? Here are some suggestions that won’t raise any German eyebrows:
“Ich hab dich lieb, Mama” or “Mama, Ich hab’ Dich so lieb”
“Alles Gute zum Muttertag” or “Alles Liebe zum Muttertag”
“Mama, Du bist die Tollste von allen!’
“Mama, Du bist wunderbar!” or “Danke Mama, Du bist die Beste!”
“Fuer die beste Mama auf der ganzen Welt!”
Here are some other fun sayings or poems you could make use of.
Happy Mothers Day to all our Spielwelt mums, from the teachers, leaders, committee and director.
Ahoy there! Here is our sixth lesson in our pirate series.
Every pirate needs to know how to tie knots. Get some shoe strings and teach your child how to tie their (or your) shoes. To make it more piratey and get more practice, get a meter of rope, and learn to tie a granny knot around a chair leg, or around your ship’s mast or flag pole. Remember the old sailor’s adage: “If you can’t tie knots, tie lots!” (Be sure to put the rope away when you stop supervising though, please.)
Ready to dance a hearty sailor’s jig? Sing and dance along to Lisa-Marie’s favourite pirate song (2019 GAP children will remember this super jaunty tune too): Piraten Tanzen So (also on Spotify).
Ahoy there! Here’s instalment five of our pirate series.
For lunch, why not get creative and make some pirate themed food?
To make Piraten veggie ships (Piratenschiffe), you can use a carrot (Karotte) stick mast (Mast), lettuce (Salat) leaf sail (Segel), on top of a boat hull (das Bot) made of a cucumber (Gurke) sliced in half lengthwise.
Alternatively, here are some hard boiled egg (Eier) and red/ green/ yellow (rot/ gruen/ gelb) capsicum (Paprika) boats.
Bagel life-rings (Rettungsringe): cream cheese and red capsicum strips for stripes.
Ahoy there! Here’s the fourth lesson in our pirate series.
Time to read a treasure map and find the treasure! Hide some “treasure” (Schatz) in your child’s bedroom, or the living room or kitchen. Make a map of the room or house (in PEN) and mark an X where the treasure is (in PENCIL). Give your child the map and explain how maps work. Let your pirate find the treasure. Your child will no doubt want to do this repeatedly or hide treasure for you to find, hence the PENCIL mark which can be erased and put somewhere else on the page. Click here for a fun treasure map template.
If you want to take your Papagei parrot in the bath with you, here’s a picture of our simple wash-cloth/elastic band bird, suitable for any sailor. Add masking tape eyes and as many feathers as you like, for effect.
With (or without) your Papagei parrot, you can fly around the house annoying everyone by singing this funny parrot song: Ich habe einen kleinen Papagei.
Ahoy there, me hearties!! Boy, have we got a whole lot of fun for you! Here is the first in our pirate series.
First off, you’re going to need a newspaper pirate hat, of course. You can fold one like Gerda shows in her awesome pirate hat craft video. If you really want to go to town, paint and decorate your hat like she demonstrates too.
That pirate hat is just begging for you to sing along with your Director and Truffle to that old German favourite song and video, Mein Hut der hat drei Ecken.
Make bunny pancakes! Here’s the how-to video and recipe for you and your child to follow along. Here is a similar one auf Deutsch.
Make bunny-ear head bands. Make a strip of paper to go around your child’s head, and staple some card/paper ears on it, like in our photo. You can newspaper if you like. Here’s a slightly fancier version. (Tip: if you are using staples, put a little piece of sticky tape over the staple ends so they don’t get caught on your child’s hair.)
Play and singHaeschen in der Grube (rabbit in the burrow). When we sing and play this at GAP one child goes into the middle of the circle and curls up as the Haeschen while we sing. We all go into the middle of the circle and gently pat the Haeschen during the line “armes Haeschen bist du krank, das du nicht mehr huepfen kannst?” then quickly run back into our circle spots for the next line to allow space for the Haeschen to jump up and hop. Here is the song sung with the lyrics.
Ready for a quiet story time?Die Haeschenschule (Rabbit School): a very old classic story, read aloud. (We usually skip the bit at 3:43 because we don’t have naughty children at GAP, and even if we did, they wouldn’t be treated in that old-fashioned way.)