The Bounty of Placer County

Bounty

Loomis Community Preschool (LCP) is organizing a community dinner at Casque Winery in Loomis on May 2nd.  The dinner, titled Bounty of Placer County, puts an emphasis on all things local.  It will feature food by local caterer Gourmet Garage, wine by Casque Winery, beer by local breweries, and music by a local jazz band.  The main event of the night will be a silent auction celebrating the work and goods of local artists and businesses.  The dinner is open to the public, and our hope is that it will become an annual community event.

Loomis Community Preschool (LCP) is a non-profit, co-op preschool that has served thousands of families in Placer County throughout its 40 years of service.  Funds earned at Bounty of Placer County will finance scholarships for families in need as well as supplies for curriculum development.

Please join us!  The Bounty of Placer County promises to be a great event — delicious food, good drinks, fun entertainment, and great people!  To buy tickets, use the PayPal system located on the right-hand side of this page OR call (916) 652-7842.

Additional Information and Links…

Casque Winery is located at the Flower Farm in Loomis at 9280 Horseshoe Bar Road.  They have been generous enough to donate their space for the event, as well as a portion of all wine bottle sales at the event.  Thank you, Casque!  For more information on Casque Winery, visit their website at http://www.casquewines.com.

Silent auction contributors include:

Dessert auction contributors include Icing on the Cupcake, Ikedas, Cakes N’ Toppers, and much more!

Music by local band 4 on 6 Instrumental Jazz.

Tickets include appetizers, dinner, and two drinks!

Questions and information?  Feel free to send an email to Evin Duncan at fundraising4lcp@gmail.com.

You’ve Got to Read This Book

The book All Joy and No Fun is an honest and intelligent book about modern day parenting. The author, Jennifer Senior, from the start, acknowledges that unlike other parenting books, this book is not about how to parent, instead it is a book about what parenting does to us.

Her in-depth use of relevant studies and historical perspectives creates a portrait of who we have become as parents and how becoming a parent drastically changes our lives.

One specific chapter reminded me of why I send my kids to Loomis Community Preschool. While Senior is not trying to advocate for play-based learning (she is simply trying to explain the simple gifts that children bring to our lives), her words are reminders of why play-based learning is so important for children.

 

“Children learn about the world through doing, touching, experiencing; adults, on the other hand, tend to take in the world through their heads–reading books, watching television, swiping at touch screens. They’re estranged from the world of everyday objects. Yet interacting with that world is fundamental to who we are” (All Joy and No Fun Jennifer Senior 104).

IMAG5560  science playdough

Children are being expected at much younger ages to learn as adults learn. We, as adults, forget that what works for us, does not work for them. We can give them all the answers, or we can let them discover them for themselves. Loomis Community Preschool teachers create an environment where children are allowed and encouraged to discover.

 

“Early childhood is when we first gain control of our bodies and develop our motor skills. Toddlers and preschoolers acquire knowledge in ways that are inseparable from their physical experiences” (All Joy and No Fun Jennifer Senior 106).

active

A preschooler’s mind is not an adult mind. So why do we try to teach a preschooler in the same way we teach an adult: pencil and paper? A child who can write his letters does not make for a knowledgable child. But instead, a child who has been given the opportunity to physically experience the world, will attain knowledge with every touch, every jump, every stumble, every prick, every bruise. I am thankful that Loomis Community Preschool encourages the physicality of the preschooler’s body and mind. I am thankful for dancing and climbing and digging and raking and rolling and running and pounding.

 

“Children remind us just how much of our implicit knowledge, which hums inaudibly in the background all day long, is stuff we once had to learn. They climb into the bathtub partially clothed, put half-eaten bananas in the refrigerator, use toys in ways the manufacturer never intended. (So you want to mix those paints rather than make pictures with them? Lay stickers on top of one another rather than lay them out side by side? Use dominos as blocks, cars as flying machines, tutus as bridal veils? Knock yourself out!). No one has yet told them otherwise. To children, the whole universe is a controlled experiment (All Joy and No Fun Jennifer Senior 107).

photo 3-2   art more shaving cream

Oh, how many times have I cringed as a child sits at the art station, squirting glue all over her paper. “No, no, no!” I want to say. But at Loomis Community Preschool, the children are not told that glue is for gluing and paint is for painting. This allows not only for more true creativity, but it allows for children to explore. And although I want my children to know how to follow directions and I want them to know that often in life we are told “No!” I more so want them to have great minds. And throughout history individuals did not earn the label of “Great Mind” by using things the way they have always been used. Instead, the Great Minds of history were innovators, experimenters, explorers. They were people who were willing to say, at the age of 3, “I see that everyone else is painting with that paintbrush and creating pretty pictures, but I wonder what would happen if I poured all this glue onto my paper and left it there? Oh and maybe I will squish it a little. What happens then?” Pretty pictures, maybe not, but at LCP we are developing great minds.

 

“Most adults consider philosophy a luxury. But philosophy, it turns out, is what children do naturally, and when they do, they take us, back to that remote and almost unimaginably luxurious time when we ourselves still asked loads of questions that had no point. In fact, according to Gareth B. Matthews, author of The Philosophy of Childhood, asking pointless questions is the true specialty of children, especially between the ages of three and seven, because the instinct hasn’t yet been drummed out of them.” (All Joy and No Fun Jennifer Senior 107-108).

IMG_5938 guitar

Circle time at Loomis Community Preschool is the epitome of philosophy. As the adults laugh awkwardly at the statements and questions being thrown around, we don’t interrupt and we don’t belittle. We discuss cuts and bruises, we wonder about the illustrations on the page of circle time books, we reveal simple details from our weekends, we are not afraid to go off on tangents. The adults in the room can laugh all they want. But is it possible that it is the children in the circle who should actually be laughing at us, because we ask so few questions, and say so few words to one another, out of fear of what others might think.

Touch. Experience. Experiment. Philosophize. The next great innovators will probably be products of your local play-based preschool.

ReCreate: a fun rainy day activity

Drawers filled with pieces of fabric, ribbon, leather straps, buttons, bottle tops. Boxes filled with containers, bottles, plastic to go containers. A table situated with two hot glue guns. This is ReCreate.

If you are looking for something fun and cheap to do with your kids, you should visit ReCreate in Roseville.  ReCreate is an art studio that stands for something: More Art, Less Waste.  This art studio inspires intense creativity, because all you have is trash as your medium.  Who would have thought that so much could be created by all those things we throw away?

We recently visited ReCreate with our daughter and created a monkey pencil holder out of trash.

recreate

For $6 an hour, you can create with your kids. While older kids may be able to independently navigate around the studio, most preschoolers will need a little help coming up with ideas and putting it all together.  Check out their website for more information: http://www.recreate.org/

And if you can’t visit the art studio, consider saving some of your trash and inspiring your kids with this challenge: fill a bag with miscellaneous trash and ask them to create something with whatever is in the bag.  This could be a group challenge or a competition between siblings (who can create the coolest trash art sculpture?).