Archive for November 2007

Director’s Column: What Should Children Gain from Nursery School

By Jeanne W. Lepper, Director
At Bing Nursery School we want children to be well- educated. Parents ask, and rightly so, will my child be prepared for kindergarten following a play-based nursery school experience?…

Carol Dweck: Praising Intelligence: Costs to Children’s Self-Esteem and Motivation

By Christine VanDeVelde, Writer and Bing Alumni Parent
“You’re such a great artist!” “You’re so smart!” Who would ever imagine that praising a child could be bad? After all, we love our children and want them to have high self-esteem…

Tracing Children’s Thinking Through Observation, Documentation and Reflection

By Adrienne Lomangino, Head Teacher
Bing teachers spend hours each week taking notes on children’s conversations, snapping photos in the classroom, and working with children to make their ideas salient through words, movement, music, crafts and artwork…

Lera Boroditsky: Language Influencing Thought

By Jamie Leach, Assistant Teacher
Lera Boroditsky believes the language children speak shapes how they think. An assistant professor in Stanford’s psychology department, she is one of the first scholars to back up this commonly held belief…

Researcher in Profile: Allison Master

By Chia-wa Yeh, Head Teacher and Research Coordinator
Many children at Bing Nursery School have met Allison Master, a 3rd year graduate student in psychology at Stanford University. Gentle and attentive, Master and her research assistants have spent hours…

The Musical Story—The Power of Music to Aid Early Literacy

By Simon Firth, Writer and Bing Parent
Regular visitors to Bing’s classrooms will know how music permeates every child’s experience of the school—from surprise encounters with musicians wandering through the play yards, to post-snack dance parties,…

Trees as a Topic: From Science to Socio-Dramatic Play

By Beverley Hartman, Head Teacher
Inspired by Bing’s rich natural setting, the teachers of East AM focused on trees for in-depth study last fall. As we began creating activities and materials, the opportunities for teaching science and math became quickly evident…

Making Sense of Our Senses

By Adrienne Lomangino, Head Teacher
When the children of the East PM classroom returned after winter break, many took an immediate interest in some new objects on the class discovery table: six small squeeze bottles, each holding a cotton ball laden with scented oil or extract…

A Story to Tell: Story Writing, Storytelling, and Story Plays

By Nancy Howe, Head Teacher
For the children in the Center PM classroom, this year was full of story writing, storytelling, and acting out stories—the results of a yearlong literacy-based project. Its origins were rooted in last summer’s passionate interest in writing humorous stories…

Doctors at Play: A Window into the Value of Socio-Dramatic Play

By Peckie Peters, Head Teacher
“Lola and I are going to make sure the bunnies are healthy,” announced Bradley one Friday in West Room. “We’ve already checked them, but we’ll keep an eye on them to make sure they’re OK,” he reported earnestly…

Worm Project

By Parul Chandra, Head Teacher
What is a project? At Bing, a project is an in-depth investigation of a topic worth learning more about. For 10 weeks last fall, the children in Center AM studied worms…

Families Around the World in West PM

By Karen Robinette, Head Teacher
Early in the school year, children in the West afternoon classroom began a conversation at one of the snack tables about where their grandparents live. While some children have grandparents nearby, many have grandparents in far-off places throughout the world…

Singing in the Classroom Spurs Learning in the PM Two’s

By Kitti Pecka, Head Teacher
Music time after snack fills the PM Two’s with joy—and not coincidentally, boosts their brain development. The sessions illustrate perfectly the concept of interactive learning…

Spring Staff Development Day

By Jamie Leach, Assistant Teacher
Each spring, teachers have the opportunity to come together to reflect on the passing school year and further develop their skills as teachers. This year, the recent return of seven teachers who traveled to Italy on a Reggio Emilia study tour…

Reflections on a Study Tour in Reggio Emilia, Italy

By Emma O’Hanlon, Teacher
In the northern region of Italy rests the city of Reggio Emilia, famous to early childhood educators all over the world for its progressive and creative approach to early childhood education. On April 13, 2007, seven Bing teachers made a journey there…

NAEYC Conference

By Todd Erickson, Teacher
Tens of thousands of educators and child-care professionals from around the country descended upon Atlanta last November for the annual conference of the National Association for the Education of Young Children…

CAEYC Conference

By Lisa Wesley, Teacher
This year’s California Association for the Education of Young Children conference, held in San Jose, March 8-10, 2007, began as it always does with a “Leadership Day,” gathering directors, administrators, and others interested in leadership roles in the early childhood…

NAEYC Professional Development Conference

By Chia-wa Yeh, Head Teacher and Research Coordinator
A professional development conference this summer offered a wealth of inspiration for enriching programs at Bing. The theme for the conference, “Intentionality in Early Childhood Education,” grabbed my interest…

Partnering with the Children’s Music Network

By Michelle Forrest, Teacher
Inspired by a children’s music conference last fall, Bing hosted a “song swap” this March, bringing together more than 25 nursery school teachers, librarians, storytellers, and music teachers from throughout northern California…

Kindergarten Information Night

By Minna Chen, Assistant Teacher
My, how quickly our children grow. As some children and parents are just beginning to settle into Bing, others are preparing to take that next big step: kindergarten. “This transition into the formal setting of elementary school is one of the harder ones for us,”…

How Play-Based Nursery Schools Prepare Children for Kindergarten

By Karen Robinette, Head Teacher
Though it comes as a surprise to some, a play-based nursery school such as Bing prepares children for any type of kindergarten, even the most academically challenging. This question arose this year, as it often does, at Bing’s annual Kindergarten Information Night…

Harvest Moon Auction

By Jennifer Winters, Assistant Director
The Harvest Moon Auction fell on the eve of October 28, 2006, making it a true Harvest Moon. This year, the Arrillaga Center for Sports and Recreation was festooned with pumpkins, fall leaves, and colorful balloons for the 18th annual celebration…