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  #1  
Old 02-07-2015, 05:42 PM
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kendallina kendallina is online now
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Default School Age Materials

Hi, I run a preschool in my home and next year I'm making a few changes. One of the changes includes enrolling a few schoolagers for after school. I may also have a few school agers for summer. So, I need to know how to make my preschool more school-age friendly. It's been years since I've worked with this age group, so mostly I'm wondering about materials... what do school agers (kindy-2nd grade mostly) like besides legos?

Thanks!!
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Old 02-07-2015, 07:56 PM
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Controlled Chaos Controlled Chaos is offline
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Puzzles, board games, craft supplies... that's what my pre k 5 year olds enjoy
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Old 02-07-2015, 08:15 PM
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Starburst Starburst is offline
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It depends on the interest of the individual child, each child is into different things. I would just try to stay away from the temptation of using tv, tablets, or any type of electronics since they are attention/patience suckers (even the ones that claim to be education) besides most school agers these days get more then enough screen/gadget time at home.

During the school year also keep in mind that they may need to finish homework or need to do reading for school so make sure to dedicate enough time for them to do that before they move on to free play (possibly a snack or small break between school and daycare). Tutoring and homework help/check is a good advertising point for SAC and that way it's one less thing for parents to have to worry about when they get home.

Some basic games/things for those age groups:
Puzzles (slightly more challenging then ones for younger kids)
Board games (Candy Land, Shoots and Ladders, Hungry Hungry Hippos)
Bingo
Scavenger hunt
Science projects (like a volcano with soda and mento, younger kids can watch too)
*Reading groups/book clubs (may very depending on age/reading levels)
*Optical course challenge (if you have a big enough back yard or play area)
*Art projects (window clings, dream catchers, paint by numbers, jewelry, clay, paper mache painting, etc.)

You can also have the older kids be your helpers:
*Read to the younger kids (if they can read)
*Have them put on a puppet show or play based on story they like (pre-approve it first, some children may not be responsible enough to avoid violence)
*Singing/dancing games
*Mad libs (can help them learn about things they need to know for school just try to make sure they keep it clean {or else, all body parts will be 'butt' and all verbs will be 'fart')
*Improvation/charades/ 'Whose Line Is It Anyway': give them a scenario to act out in front of the audience (like your changing tv channels)
*Toy cars/dolls (usually they are still interested in those toys, especially if there are younger kids who ask them to play)
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Old 02-07-2015, 08:36 PM
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For girls, My little ponies, littlest pet shops, baby dolls and accessories. These dumb (oops did I type that?) Shopkins things are super fun for my 7 year old, as is the doll house. She also enjoys the play kitchen and other toys I have in the daycare. 50 -100 piece puzzles. horses and barn. Any of the craft supplies. Mazes, word searches, etc. Mad libs. (and there's nothing wrong with body parts being butt and verbs being fart. Oh no. BUTTS. Draw the line at penis though)

Boys (and girls!)--hot wheels track, snap circuits. any building toy, especially more advanced ones. Playdough. Sensory table, water table, etc. Honestly the younger school age groups are NOT that different in toy interests. You DO need to give them more supervision than you might expect.
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Old 02-07-2015, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverSabre25 View Post
For girls, My little ponies, littlest pet shops, baby dolls and accessories. These dumb (oops did I type that?) Shopkins things are super fun for my 7 year old, as is the doll house. She also enjoys the play kitchen and other toys I have in the daycare. 50 -100 piece puzzles. horses and barn. Any of the craft supplies. Mazes, word searches, etc. Mad libs. (and there's nothing wrong with body parts being butt and verbs being fart. Oh no. BUTTS. Draw the line at penis though)
I'm just saying that after awhile it can get a little annoying if they pick those words all the time and you want them to have some variety to be more creative and spontaneous (semantic satiation can cause some of the other kids to loose interest in the activity sooner). Also, it may show up at school, home, church, or randomly in public and some of the parents may see it as 'potty humor' that is inappropriate for a child care setting (not good for business), especially since children {usually boys} tend to get to more aggressive/ rowdy when they get too silly (at least from what I've observed on many occasions).

Plus, there are many schools and daycares that discourage talking about stuff like that unless they are using the bathroom. The daycare I used to work at the owner hated the word 'fart' so they said 'toot' and only during potty times, talking to parents for health reasons, or when teaching manners.
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Old 02-08-2015, 05:34 AM
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My school-agers would be happy with nothing but art supplies (they have free range in our studio: papers, tons of different writing/drawing tools, painting, clay, tape (colored tape is a favorite), blank books, lots of recycled "junk." Their other favorites are reading, pattern blocks, cooking, helping me with real work, and helping the toddlers. Seriously, if that's all they did, they'd be fine. Other big hits are the mud kitchen (now a snow kitchen) and dress-ups.
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Old 02-08-2015, 06:22 AM
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kendallina kendallina is online now
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Great! This does really help. I need to look into more building things for the boys (and the girls!) and yes, MAD LIBS! So glad many of you mentioned these, I haven't done a mad lib in years. I think I'll need some older books and puzzles too. Maybe a few games.

For the school year, they'll be here for less than an hour after school (I close at 5:15 and by the time we get back from bus stop it's 4:35), so I don't think I'll plan any activities, just letting them have a snack and play (outside when it's nice).

Last summer, I had a few 1st graders (siblings of my preschoolers) and we did a lot of art and sewing (the boys and girls). And yes, it was amazing to me how much adult-time they needed and also how LOUD they were compared with the preschoolers. But, it was enough of a success to give it a go this year. Thanks everyone, keep it coming!
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Old 02-08-2015, 06:26 AM
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kendallina kendallina is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Starburst View Post
It depends on the interest of the individual child, each child is into different things. I would just try to stay away from the temptation of using tv, tablets, or any type of electronics since they are attention/patience suckers (even the ones that claim to be education) besides most school agers these days get more then enough screen/gadget time at home.

During the school year also keep in mind that they may need to finish homework or need to do reading for school so make sure to dedicate enough time for them to do that before they move on to free play (possibly a snack or small break between school and daycare). Tutoring and homework help/check is a good advertising point for SAC and that way it's one less thing for parents to have to worry about when they get home.

Some basic games/things for those age groups:
Puzzles (slightly more challenging then ones for younger kids)
Board games (Candy Land, Shoots and Ladders, Hungry Hungry Hippos)
Bingo
Scavenger hunt
Science projects (like a volcano with soda and mento, younger kids can watch too)
*Reading groups/book clubs (may very depending on age/reading levels)
*Optical course challenge (if you have a big enough back yard or play area)
*Art projects (window clings, dream catchers, paint by numbers, jewelry, clay, paper mache painting, etc.)

You can also have the older kids be your helpers:
*Read to the younger kids (if they can read)
*Have them put on a puppet show or play based on story they like (pre-approve it first, some children may not be responsible enough to avoid violence)
*Singing/dancing games
*Mad libs (can help them learn about things they need to know for school just try to make sure they keep it clean {or else, all body parts will be 'butt' and all verbs will be 'fart')
*Improvation/charades/ 'Whose Line Is It Anyway': give them a scenario to act out in front of the audience (like your changing tv channels)
*Toy cars/dolls (usually they are still interested in those toys, especially if there are younger kids who ask them to play)
LOVE all the activity ideas. This is great especially for my summer group that will be here and we will have ALL DAY together. Thanks so much.
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  #9  
Old 02-08-2015, 06:30 AM
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kendallina kendallina is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverSabre25 View Post
For girls, My little ponies, littlest pet shops, baby dolls and accessories. These dumb (oops did I type that?) Shopkins things are super fun for my 7 year old, as is the doll house. She also enjoys the play kitchen and other toys I have in the daycare. 50 -100 piece puzzles. horses and barn. Any of the craft supplies. Mazes, word searches, etc. Mad libs. (and there's nothing wrong with body parts being butt and verbs being fart. Oh no. BUTTS. Draw the line at penis though)

Boys (and girls!)--hot wheels track, snap circuits. any building toy, especially more advanced ones. Playdough. Sensory table, water table, etc. Honestly the younger school age groups are NOT that different in toy interests. You DO need to give them more supervision than you might expect.
Yes, in pre-k we do a letter of the week and for last week's letter P, both pee and poop made it to our list but penis stayed off. Not sure really why I drew the line there, but it seemed inappropriate especially since we were in mixed company...boys and girls... Haha

Thanks for the great ideas!
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