f is for {the 2002} fire

it was ten years ago today that a fire broke out in our church basement also known as preschool classroom, kitchen, storage, library.

i was still on maternity leave with micah, reeling from a previous miscarriage and generally feeling like i couldn’t do it all.  then there was the fire.  it was quite a journey.  with a lot of gratitude, i’ll walk into work today.  ten years later. smiling and stronger and sure of community.


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n is for {we’re in the} newspaper

we have our own photos to share and our own stories to tell, but while those are waiting, here is what our local newspaper has to show:

012712 kids 5.jpg

(click on the photo above)

thank you, ms wendy!

m is for movie star baby

hee hee hee…one of our very own preschool baby dolls was on the news!

movie star baby!

my friend, christy, is the director of the SIDS network of kansas and they needed a doll for one of their news segments.

movie star baby

much to our delight (and confusion!), we watched our doll on the news!  we looked at the calendar to try to understand better that the doll was picked up on monday morning, driven to wichita, went to the news studio for the recording session, driven back to newton, and dropped off at our preschool on tuesday morning.

movie star baby!

you can watch it too:

movie star baby!

(click on the above photo)

m is for magazines, maps and mountains

we got a double m out of a project this week by using old editions of the mennonite magazine for cutting and gluing into capital M shapes!


there were varying techniques.


:: :: :: ::

we practiced m writing along with pointy and bumpy mountain line shapes.


:: :: :: ::

we cut and taped map strips into map mountains.


we have more maps waiting to be used for our field trip headbands!  thank you, friends and families for the donations!

m is for mouse paint…with a movie!

mouse painting!

we read the story mouse paint (after a two day mystery of not being able to find it…then discovering it in our tub of books to give away…yikes!  we almost lost it for good!)

Mouse Paint

we mixed colors just like in the book.  one day i did it in jars hidden in a brown bag.  one day i did it in ziplock bags tucked in my lap.  and then one day everyone got their own ziplock bag.  super exciting stuff!

mouse painting!

we used our mixed secondary colors and some more primary colors to cover a big piece of paper.  there were 5 plastic rats that we chose to call “mice” that painted with us. : )  we used brushes, hands, and mice to get the paint on the paper.

mouse painting!mouse painting!

as usual, paint aprons are optional.  and i witnessed again that some kids who wore aprons went home messier than those who didn’t!  same with me.  this is the season for “pulling up your sleeves past your elbows” because one thing that most kids don’t like are paint saturated sleeves for the rest of the day.  one year we found little sponge like paint marks all over the classroom and determined it was from the edge of someone’s sleeve.   it was kind of cute.

mouse painting!

and a movie, not for those prone to motion sickness, to share more mouse paint joy:


not heard here is a little song we sing to the tune of “if you’re happy and you know it…”

when you mix red and yellow you get orange
when you mix red and yellow you get orange
when you mix red and yellow a new color you will see
when you mix red and yellow you get orange

(repeat with other color combos including…when you mix all the colors you get brown!)


oh, mouse painting…what messy fun you were.

s is for salad spinner art

well, this was a spinning good time!


and it was also good to wash this thing up to use for our lettuce again at home.

salad spinner art

there were all sorts of paint techniques…dots, pools, stripes…here we have ms. erin’s star design…


salad spinner art

salad spinner art

salad spinner art

salad spinner art

(it helped to get on a chair in order to get a little better leverage)

salad spinner art

salad spinner art

salad spinner art

salad spinner art

ta-da!  then it’s off to the cubbies to dry…


m is for martin movie :: updated! the real deal!

i’m so grateful that i could correct the movie. there is nothing like hearing the voice of dr. king, described as “big and loud and angry and serious and nice and like santa” by our preschoolers.

so now, enjoy our tribute to dr. king, complete with portions of his “i have a dream” speech.

m is for martin :: l is for laws

we’ve had a meaningful couple of days already this week.




i got misty eyed once when we watched a mlk video on youtube…just seeing 12 little faces all gaping mouthed and wide eyed listening to voice of a man.

one of the preschoolers said, “he sounds angry.”  then we went back to our book and recalled that there were times when he WAS angry!   “yeah!  i would be too!  yeah, they were so mean.  yeah, it wasn’t fair.  yeah, if they did that now they’d be in jail.”


good stuff, i tell you.

we’re coming up with laws that we think dr. king would be glad we have.

the complete list to come.