The first day of Chanuka was an extra special day for every nursery child in JDBY. Our talented Early Childhood Director, Mrs. Shelley Cardash, created an interactive mother and child Chanukah activity at JDBY. Mothers were invited to spend some time in school with their children to experience the kind of learning that goes on in the nursery classroom – learning through play.The program began in the nursery classrooms, where mothers and children were given instruction booklets explaining the center time activities they were about to experience. The large crowd then made its way into the beautifully organized, decorated auditorium where the fun began. Hand in hand, mother and child completed 10 different Chanukah activities together. Each table was labeled with a Chanukah symbol corresponding to the symbols in the instruction booklet which made the program easy to follow.
The educational, yet fun, activities consisted of the following:
Decorating a dreidel with Chanukah wrapping paper and sequins to enhance creativity, eye hand coordination, and spatial awareness.
Digging through sand to find all sorts of dreidels – to allow sensory exploration, to provide an opportunity to count and sort types of dreidels, and to explore concepts of volume.
Chanukah symbol stamping and Chanukah gelt rubbings to enhance pre-writing experiences, sharpening fine motor skills, eye hand coordination and a review of Chanukah vocabulary learned.
Chanukah candle sorting by color to enhance math skills.
Play dough with Chanukah cookie cutters allowing for sensory exploration of Chanukah symbols.
Dreidel spinning with נ ג ה ש and tally sheets enhancing letter recognition, counting, and organizing results of dreidel spins.
The fire safety table consisted of Fire Safety books, mazes, and dot to dot pages to reinforce very important concepts such as “Stop, Drop and Roll”, and checking smoke alarms instilling in the children social awareness.
Creating a Menorah from graham crackers, frosting, pretzel sticks, and Craisins. This center gave the children opportunities for counting, fine motor skills, and putting together parts of a whole.
Reviewing our א’ ב’ letters, א-ט. We matched the flame letter to its candle letter on the מנורה.
Decorating a picture frame gave everyone an opportunity to have his or her picture taken with his or her mother to place inside the picture frame so that they will always remember this special day at nursery school.
Throughout the morning, there was a table set up with healthy refreshments and, of course, Chanukah cookies for mothers and children to enjoy!