Emotional and Social Development

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Supporting Families and Learning At Home

Stepping Stone School Supporting Families & Learning at Home At Stepping Stone School, our mission is to offer not only exceptional nurturing and education for our students, but also extraordinary support and care for all parents and families! Many families are finding new and creative ways to engage and educate their children while at home! We compiled a list of fun and educational activities and resources for you to use with your family! Writing and Literacy Readiness Blueberries for Sal Read Aloud Blueberr...

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4 Ways to Model Respect

In preparation for this month’s Character and Empathy™ Curriculum focus, I asked my four-year-old about respect.  She pondered for several moments and then provided an exasperated reply, “I don’t know; what is it?” I found myself challenged to come up with the words to describe this character trait and fell back on examples of how we have seen respect displayed through the actions of others. Respect is one character trait you may easily recognize when you see it and just as easily identify when it is absent. Partnering with you to encourage this valuable character trait, ...

Advanced Pre-K
Pre-Kindergarten
School-Age
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6 Ways to Connect with Your Child

Families are always looking for ways to connect with their child’s learning which can bolster their development. Being able to understand and follow directions is important at home and at school. Here are a few tips to connect with your child and expand their minds at the same time. While driving home or waiting in line, play a game that enables your child to display his direction-following skills. Use a variety of positional words (over, behind, under, above, in front of) and say something like, “Put your hands above your head,” “Move your hands behind your back,” “Put o...

Advanced Pre-K
Preschool
School-Age
Toddler
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Encouraging Friendly Relationships

In the fast-paced culture that we live in today, children seem to have busier schedules than in past generations. As a parent, you may be shuffling them from one activity to the next, or one sports practice to another. The social opportunities for your child can vary with each activity and some children have an easy time developing friendly relationships with their peers, while others may struggle. Parents play a significant role in helping their young child develop a healthy social life so that friendships are more likely to form. Here are some ways you can encourage your child to make ...

Advanced Pre-K
Preschool
School-Age
Toddler
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Ensuring a Positive Transition Back to School

You have marked the calendar, purchased school supplies, but the day is not coming soon enough for children excited to return to school! Entering a new school year is an opportunity to approach learning with fresh excitement and vigor.  Children want to use their talents, follow their interests and share their learning with you.  Use these final days of summer to create memories which will last a lifetime. Read, Learn, and Create! Whether your child is entering school for the first time or returning for another year, here are five things you can do to help your child mentally prep...

Advanced Pre-K
Pre-Kindergarten
Preschool
School-Age
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Nurturing Harmonious Sibling Relationships

The sibling relationship is one of the longest lasting relationships of a person’s life. Promoting a positive and secure relationship among siblings can become a baseline for future relationships and connections throughout their adult lives. The question then is “How do we promote harmonious relationships between siblings?” Research suggests several key ideas:   1.) Provide Individual Feedback. Focus specifically on each child’s personal best behaviors and accomplishments without commenting on how his or her sibling is achieving or has achieved in the past. Providing...

Infant
Preschool
School-Age
Toddler
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Building Emotional Intelligence

I had just finished reading Alice Shertle’s book, Little Blue Truck to a group of preschoolers.  This picture book describes the caring gesture of a friendly little truck who helps a rude dump truck after it gets stuck in a huge mud puddle beside a farm.  The friendly truck drives into the mud puddle to try to help only to get stuck there himself.  One by one the farm animals rush to help Little Blue get out of the mud.  After much effort, the animals manage to push Little Blue out of the mud, who in turn pushes the Dump Truck out of the mud. I reread the Dump Truck’s words to Li...

Advanced Pre-K
Pre-Kindergarten
Preschool
Toddler
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The Art of Kindness

In this busy world we live in, it is becoming more and more vital to remember to take a moment to be kind to ourselves and to others. Kindness is more than just an idea or a thing that we can do, it is a way of living. When we think of things we want our children to grow up to be, kind is definitely on that list. An act of kindness is something that can bring joy and harmony not only to the receiver but to the giver as well. The Random Act of Kindness  movement is sweeping the nation.  Sites like https://www.randomactsofkindness.org are wonderful resources for people and communities to ge...

Advanced Pre-K
Infant
Pre-Kindergarten
School-Age
Toddler
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Nurturing compassion in the lives of children

December Character Development: Compassion I recently observed a precious exchange between sisters, four-year-old Katie and younger sister Ellie. Katie had already made several attempts to cross a low balance beam independently and so when she failed yet again, she crumbled to the floor and began to cry out of frustration.  Eager to comfort, Ellie toddled over to where her big sister sat crying.  Little Ellie practically folded her body in half to look her sister in the eyes, reached out her chubby little hand and patted Katie on the back, then leaning over a little more, gave her big s...

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November Character Development: Citizenship

How to practice good citizenship On the cusp of another presidential election, it may be that words like civic duty and voting are what come to mind when you hear the word “citizenship.” However, citizenship is much more than that – we don’t have to wait until our children are old enough to vote before we talk about making a difference in our community. We can begin teaching them how to be good citizens even now by: 1. Starting at Home. Set an example by respecting others and their property. Encourage them to clean up after themselves, follow the rules at home and at school, an...

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Building Developmental Skills at Home

Children are constantly noticing and experimenting with the information that comes their way. No matter what they do, they are learning! The examples below include developmental skills fostered by the activities: Give simple, appropriate tasks – putting crayons back in the box; folding washcloths. (Self-regulation, fine motor) Practice self-help skills such as zipping, buttoning, keeping up with personal items, opening packages of food. (Self-confidence, hand-eye coordination) Establish routines with your child and help him follow them – putting his backpack in a certai...

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