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December Newsletter

From the Desk of the Principal

We have had so much to be thankful for this month at Chesterbrook. Please be sure to read below about the exciting things we did in all of our classrooms.

We are happy to announce that our school was chosen to test a new parent communication tool. This will allow us to send you a picture or pictures of your child every day and you will also receive daily reports via email. We are currently testing the product so be sure to look at emails from us and bear with us as we explore this new system. It will not be into full effect for several weeks and we will keep you posted.

With winter months quickly upon us I wanted to remind everyone that in the unlikely event of inclement weather and closing or delay, we will update our website, send an email and be listed on WPVI snow closing information.

Lastly, as you plan your December travels or time with family please be sure to send us an email to let us know what days you will not be at Chesterbrook.

We are so thankful for all of our Chesterbrook families.

Check out what’s happening in…

Infant A: Infants in Infant A have been working on grasping toys and tracking objects. Ms. Jamere and Ms. Aly have been introducing turkeys, feathers and colors. They have been painting and working on tracking objects in their line of sight as Ms. Jamere and Ms. Aly move and hide toys, feathers, and turkeys. Infant A has also explored “edible paint,” a mixture of rice milk and food coloring! Discovering the texture and exploring this sensory experience is surely an activity that will be repeated!

Infant B: In Infant B, Ms. Val, Ms. Candice and Ms. Miranda have been focusing on the feel, color and texture of leaves. The Infants have listened to stories about leaves, painted with leaves and enjoyed songs about Fall leaves!

Toddlers: Toddlers have been talking about upcoming holidays including Thanksgiving. They are working on identifying themselves, their classmates and their family members. For instance, answering the question, “Who will eat turkey at your house on Thanksgiving?” Toddlers also brought in family pictures to help identify the names of family members and share their families with the class. They will continue to work on this skill in December.

Beginners: Beginners have been focusing on food items related to the holiday season including vegetables. They have created a grocery store in their classroom where students can shop for vegetables using shopping carts and buy them using cash registers. Children are working on taking turns and working cooperatively at the grocery store.

Intermediates: Intermediates have been very busy this month. They have been learning about healthy food choices and healthy eating habits. They have also focused on family traditions and differences amongst families. They will continue to learn about these topics in the coming month.

Pre-K 1: Pre-K 1 has been focusing on primary and secondary colors. They have been experimenting with color combinations to determine what new colors they can create! In the dramatic play area, Pre-K 1 has been working in their very own Home Improvement store where they can mix paint, measure using a yard stick and compare colors on a paint color wheel.

Pre-K 2: Pre-K 2 has been working hard identifying sight words and practicing reading. Our Pre-K 2 students recently learned to read nursery rhymes and read them to an audience! Pre-K 2 also had a good time thinking of creative ways to disguise a turkey for Thanksgiving. We saw everything from Minions to Disney Princesses to Purple People Eaters! December is sure to be another month full of learning and creativity for our Pre-K 2 friends.

Important Dates to Remember

Saturday, December 5th– Parent’s Morning Out 9am-12pm

Saturday December 12th – Winter Wonderland Breakfast 9:30am-11:00am (hosted at Chesterbrook

Academy Elementary School – 1190 McDermott Dr West Chester, PA 19380)

Friday, December 18th – Pajama Day

Thursday, December 24th – School closes at 3:00pm

Friday, December 25th – School Closed

Thursday, December 31st– School Open (6:30-6:00)

Friday, January 1 – School Closed


From the Education Department

Exploring Holiday Traditions from Around the World

The holiday season is here, providing a wealth of opportunities to enrich the children’s understanding of diverse cultures and traditions around the world. In addition, our students will share their own traditions with others.

Below are age appropriate activities that we use in the classroom, as well as activities for you and your child to do at home.

BEGINNERS (ages 2-3):

In the classroom: As they near the age of two, children begin to recognize the sights and sounds of holidays celebrated by their family. Parents visit our classrooms to share holiday traditions, including unique books, songs and activities.

At home: Gather family photos and point out traditions, such as unwrapping presents, eating holiday dinner at grandma’s house, and making a snowman. Encourage your child to talk about what he sees in the photos.

Recommended reading: Children Around the World Celebrate Christmas by Christine Tangvald, Happy Hanukkah, Corduroy by Don Freeman, My First Kwanzaa by Karen Katz


In the classroom: Children sing holiday songs from around the world and are introduced to holiday symbols that they may see in their communities, such as Christmas trees or Hanukkah menorahs.

At home: Take a drive with your child or bring him to various holiday festivals in your community. Encourage him to look for and identify holiday decorations.

Recommended reading: Christmas Around the World by Calliope Glass, Hanukkah Hop by Erica Silverman, Li’l Rabbit’s Kwanzaa by Donna Washington

PRE-K/PRE-K2 (ages 4-5)

In the classroom: After learning about holiday traditions around the world, our older preschoolers identify countries on a globe. For example, they might learn about Diwali, the festival of lights, and then find India on the globe. They might make tamales, a dish often served on Christmas, and then find Mexico on the globe.

At home: Ask your child to help you prepare your family’s favorite holiday foods. Talk about the long-standing traditions in which these foods are rooted. For instance, you might explain, “I used to bake cookies for the holidays with my mom. Now we can start baking cookies together!”

Recommended reading: Children Just Like Me: Celebrations by Anabel Kindersley, Light the Lights: A Story about Celebrating Hanukkah and Christmas by Margaret Moorman, The Story of Kwanzaa by Mary Washington

Exposing children to various holiday traditions helps them build strong social skills, establish a sense of self, and respect the differences of others as they transition into elementary school and beyond.

– Lauren Starnes, PhD – Director of Early Childhood Education


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