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Old 04-08-2010, 08:02 AM
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Default How to Get Kids Interested?

Soooooo I have been doing daycare for 5 years now and I feel like my days have never been as chaotic as they are now! I am not sure if it is the group of kids I have or the ages or what exactly is going on, but I feel like they could careless about what "I want them to do" They are all very good, I don't mean they are completely out of control children, they are good listeners, just have no attention spans what so ever! It seems that whenever I have things planned for us to do, they could careless or their attention is only with me for 5-10 minutes!! They seem to be much more happy playing by themselves and doing their own little things!! I have 2 one year olds (just turned 1), I have 2 two year olds (almost 3), I have 3 three year olds (just turned 3) and a 5 year old, I will add a 6 year old and an 8 year old in the summer! I guess I am wondering how you all have these completely organized days, with all these activities and keep all of the children engaged! I feel like I am talking to myself the majority of the day and am finding that I am putting alot of hard work outside of daycare to get our days organized and none of the kids want to do any of it other than the 5 year old! Ugh how do you guys do it! I mean yes sometimes it works out, but most of them time it is pointless! : I
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Old 04-08-2010, 02:57 PM
DBug DBug is offline
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I do activities with the group all together, because that works for us. But your group dynamics sound different. What about working with each child individually on crafts, science experiments, etc? Just take one at a time for 5-10 minutes while the others are playing, and work with them. That way you could tailor the activity for each one's age and abilities too.

This is the way we used to do it in the toddler room of the daycare center I worked in several years back. It worked out well with that group -- it may work well with yours too.
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Old 04-08-2010, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
Soooooo I have been doing daycare for 5 years now and I feel like my days have never been as chaotic as they are now! I am not sure if it is the group of kids I have or the ages or what exactly is going on, but I feel like they could careless about what "I want them to do" They are all very good, I don't mean they are completely out of control children, they are good listeners, just have no attention spans what so ever! It seems that whenever I have things planned for us to do, they could careless or their attention is only with me for 5-10 minutes!! They seem to be much more happy playing by themselves and doing their own little things!! I have 2 one year olds (just turned 1), I have 2 two year olds (almost 3), I have 3 three year olds (just turned 3) and a 5 year old, I will add a 6 year old and an 8 year old in the summer! I guess I am wondering how you all have these completely organized days, with all these activities and keep all of the children engaged! I feel like I am talking to myself the majority of the day and am finding that I am putting alot of hard work outside of daycare to get our days organized and none of the kids want to do any of it other than the 5 year old! Ugh how do you guys do it! I mean yes sometimes it works out, but most of them time it is pointless! : I
I have tried 2 yr. olds doing things, but they are not interested, eat the colors, color on the table, try putting craft things in their mouths, etc. etc... Now I start everything at around the age of 3. At the age of 3 they are interested in the craft, coloring, etc. it does work out alot better for everyone !!!!
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Old 04-08-2010, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Iowa daycare View Post
I have tried 2 yr. olds doing things, but they are not interested, eat the colors, color on the table, try putting craft things in their mouths, etc. etc... Now I start everything at around the age of 3. At the age of 3 they are interested in the craft, coloring, etc. it does work out alot better for everyone !!!!
I agree. When they are this young letting them have lots of free time for exploration works best. Kids younger than age 3 have a hard time keeping their attention focused and are still working on their motor skills so lots of jungle gym play and such is good for them. Maybe playing a simple game with them that involves moving and jumping and such would work for them and then if you want to try crafts and more complicated activities with older kids you could have the under-3-year-olds have free play or free color or whatever simple activity related to what you are doing with the other kids. When I have older kids here I let the babies play on the carpet with the infant toys and put on a baby einstein video or something while I do activites at the dining table (not more than 6 or 7 feet away from them). This helps out a lot.
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Old 04-08-2010, 03:51 PM
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I have a multi-age group as well. I do not do "crafts" with any of them, but my environment is set up to allow independent use of materials. All of my art, math, science, writing, etc. materials are on low open shelves in "centers" and the children are allowed to use them when they choose to. I simply supervise and facilitate their play, assisting them when asked and standing by to ask open-ended questions, answer their questions and help them explore their interests further.

I found a long time ago that not all kids are interested in the same things at the same time, so I provide a wide variety of materials and activities for them to choose from and they particpate in what they are interested in. At any given time of the day I have children actively involved in activities in every interest center in my playroom.
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Old 04-08-2010, 05:37 PM
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I have a multi-age group as well. I do not do "crafts" with any of them, but my environment is set up to allow independent use of materials. All of my art, math, science, writing, etc. materials are on low open shelves in "centers" and the children are allowed to use them when they choose to. I simply supervise and facilitate their play, assisting them when asked and standing by to ask open-ended questions, answer their questions and help them explore their interests further.

I found a long time ago that not all kids are interested in the same things at the same time, so I provide a wide variety of materials and activities for them to choose from and they particpate in what they are interested in. At any given time of the day I have children actively involved in activities in every interest center in my playroom.
this is exactly how i "try" to run my program as well. except my kids drag centers all over the room and mix everything up . they are more the "dump it and leave it" type...lol how do you keep your centers organized? i always feel like i'm yelling at them to not mix everything up and make such a mess.
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:47 PM
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this is exactly how i "try" to run my program as well. except my kids drag centers all over the room and mix everything up . they are more the "dump it and leave it" type...lol how do you keep your centers organized? i always feel like i'm yelling at them to not mix everything up and make such a mess.
I feel like this is us as well!! I have 2 children tables inside with "tot trays" on each with different activities (about 4 activities for each table). And all it takes is my 15 month old arriving and it's all a mess.

Some the activities will get used but I just feel I get everything together and ready and then they just do their own thing anyway. I know they are socializing and learning those skills and we have about 10-15 minutes of circle time at best but I just wish the other activities were better received.
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:03 AM
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Thanks for everyones input! I do find myself doing alot of individual based projects and crafts, which is not a bad thing, it is very beneficial for the children, I was just curious as to how to get a group all working together!! I think it just depends on the kids and definately on their ages!! Thanks again I love hearing everyones ideas and advice, such a great resource!! I will just keep doing what I am doing until the kids want to get engaged more which I am sure will come with age and maturity! I did also try the free will project idea, but boy what a mess, I felt like I spent most of the day trying to keep things organized and in order and cleaning up, I no longer do this!! I do however let the school agers have pretty much free will during nap time, but at that time I also have more time to sit and help!! : )
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Old 04-09-2010, 01:48 PM
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I don't know how it works for me, other than I am always with them, talking with them, working with them, facilitating their play. It does help that I have a full time assistant. Of course, they do create messes, but we teach them early about putting things away when they are finished. Even my todders have access to all of our materials, they are just redirected to pick up and put away ever time they play with something....and I do still have to clean up, but I figure it's part of the job! Here are some pics (hope they turn out) of my space....these are from January....I need to take new ones.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg overhead1.jpg (92.6 KB, 67 views)
File Type: jpg dramatic play.jpg (93.8 KB, 63 views)
File Type: jpg math and manipulatives.jpg (94.2 KB, 61 views)
File Type: jpg blocks.jpg (97.5 KB, 64 views)
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Old 04-09-2010, 01:52 PM
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a couple more pics...
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File Type: jpg wide view.jpg (89.7 KB, 42 views)
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Old 04-09-2010, 01:55 PM
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I have the same kitchen set, and I love your flowered area rug with the car rug on it.
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