The Chronicle Express
  • Lessons come with a feast

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  • “Family traditions counter alienation and confusion. They help us define who we are; they provide something steady, reliable and safe in a confusing world.” (Susan Lieberman)
    The same can be said for school traditions. On Nov. 18, Miss Watkins and Mrs. Race’s Pre-K Bunny Class kept a longstanding tradition going —the Pre-K Family Feast.
    This year’s feast, was attended by over 65 Pre-K family members and staff. They enjoyed the meal, and holiday decorations and were entertained with two songs.
    Preparation for the feast gave the pupils an opportunity to practice some of the 7 Habits they have been learning about. First they set a goal, Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind, and the goal was to prepare, serve and enjoy a comfortable and special Family Feast with the special guests. The class started working on this goal in October, during its Apple Unit. They cut and cooked apples to create applesauce which was frozen to keep it for the feast.
    It took several other Habits to accomplish the goal, because this was a lot of hard work for children who are only 4 years old. They put first things first (Habit 3). Each day they looked at the jobs to achieve their goal. Remembering that to be successful they would have to give up a few moments of “working” where it was self-directed and more entertaining, and they put in a few minutes of work and effort at either an art or a cooking project (cutting up apples, baking pumpkin and banana-yogurt breads, cutting vegetables and turkey for soup, making cranberry relish, and making corn casserole). These activities took concentration, fine/large muscle control and strengthening; scooping, measuring, dumping, counting and stirring.
    They loved oo-ing and ah-ing over the final product, but most of all, they loved the quality control tastes to make sure the final product was safe and delicious for the special guests.
    To achieve the goal, the Pre-K Bunnies had to be proactive (Habit 1) by making respectful and responsible choices about their work, their actions towards their friends and coworkers, and their behaviors.
    They also needed to synergize (Habit 6), which is working together. The feast couldn’t happen without everyone working together.
    “What a day of delight Feast Day was! To show off their creative and artistic flare to our special guests, sing their little hearts out, and to proudly proclaim ‘I made that!’ allowed each child to feel a warm glow of pride, accomplishment and love in their heart as they shared this special celebration,” reports Miss Watkins.
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