Holiday Homework

Happy Holidays!

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The holiday schedule sure has been a crazy one around here! Between our crazy Christmas activities and me having a crazy allergic reaction our family routines and Mi Families programs have been a bit unpredictable.

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I can’t wait until the new year starts and our new schedule begins! First we have to finish 2018 and reschedule holiday celebrations and catch up on holiday homework.

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Even during Christmas vacation Mi Families keeps busy with with our programs, including Tutor Time.  As the new year begins we will have new programs starting and new tutor sessions opening.

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I’ll be updating www.MiFamilies.com soon with 2019 plans.  Feel free to email Christi@MiFamilies.com with questions or to enroll as we start scheduling new youth, parent, and provider services.

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Services will continue to offer “education through recreation” using top-rated curriculums for all ages and stages.  Many of our tot to tween programs enjoy our Mother Goose Time theme-based curriculum.

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Each month Mother Goose Time mails us a themed kit, such as Decembers “Sights and Sounds.”  Sights and sounds has helped us dive into a “Seasonal Senses” sub theme to help us explore the holiday season.

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Over the past couple weeks we’ve used our senses of smell and taste to bake cookies, we’ve used our sense of hearing while listening and playing carols, we’ve looked at Christmas lights, touched decorations…

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After the New Year we’ll transition through themes using our senses while exploring the world around us.  We’ll discover the difference between our local winter-wonder-land vs “sunny safari’s.”

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Through curriculums such as MGT we use themes to learn across all subject matters and encourage learning goals for all our members and team.  Network with us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, etc to learn more!

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Sensory & STEM Studies

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“I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand” is a quote I often use while teaching parents/providers – how to teach.  When we lecture, little is retained.  When we show how – they can recall information, but lessons are learned best through doing. Especially when students are doing SENSORY based activities!

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When students can FEEL lessons – physically or emotionally – they gain confidence in being able to teach others what they have learned.  Last week my tot to teen students learned about animal’s preparing for winter.  This week we talked about how animals use their senses, just as we do.  This week we transitioned to sensory studies, with help from Mother Goose Time.

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Mother Goose Time is a prepackaged curriculum where little learners can be introduced to theme’s such as “Sights and Sounds.”  Older students love teaching preschoolers such topics, while exploring such lessons themselves.  Theme based lessons can integrate ALL subject matters, and be STREAMS focused: Science, Technology, Reading (&wRiting), Engineering, Art, Math (&Music), Social Studies (&hiStory)!

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Many programs today want to be STEM focused: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.  From counting to computation, and all other educational skills, Mi Families offers individualized tutoring as well as small and large group courses for all ages. Feel free to email Christi@MiFamilies.com for more information on our programs or network with our team/members on LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube …

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Social media is a great resource for connecting – and a tool to to teach all ages about communication and technology time-lines.  Time lines help students connect math to history and encourage discussion about the pro’s and con’s of technology. As the New Year approaches we’re developing NEW programs for students of all ages –  which will include tech-time.

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…But before we countdown to 2019 we need to start setting up for next weeks learning adventures as we continue our “Sights and Sounds” of the season with holiday focused celebrations!

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Winter Transitions

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The calendar says winter starts in 2 weeks, but we’ve been sledding for quite some time in my yard, so we’ve transitioned to winter themes in many of  “Mi Families” programs. Mi Families facilitates programs for families and those who work with families – through provider trainings, parent workshops and youth services.

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During our small and large group classes, as well as one-on-one tutoring sessions, we use top rated curriculums, such as “Mother Goose Time” to teach through fun themed activities. Before transitioning to Mother Goose Time’s “Sights and Sounds” theme, we’re finishing up their “Transportation Station” by learning about all things that go.

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MGT’s themed based kits simplify new concepts for little learners, while leaving room to expand on subjects for older students. This week tots to tweens transitioned from transportation to animal movements. One thing I love about MGT is the flexible use of materials that can be used out of order or re-used many times.

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During transition weeks we often modify lessons to flow easily from one unit to the next. “Transportation Station” lessons led us to technology-time-lines where we explored history and did lots of STEM activities traveling through all types of terrain. From boats and fish that swim, to birds and planes that fly, and everything in-between, we were “on the go.”

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Students learned how animal movements can help us predict weather changes.  By observing animal preparations for migration, hibernation, and adaptation – we know winter has found Northern Michigan. Just as animals prepare for the season, we’ll prepare for the next theme of “Sights and Sounds” as we learn about how animals use their senses…

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Over the next couple weeks we’ll be using our senses to learn about the season and prepare for holiday celebrations.  Since the upcoming holidays also mean a new year – I’ll also be preparing for next semesters programs! To learn more about our programs visit www.MiFamilies.com and network with our team/members on LinkedIN, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube…

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*and CLICK the link below to learn more about MGT’s upcoming themese!

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Transportation Station

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Over the river and through the woods … Mi Families has been on the GO! Programs returned full force after Thanksgiving break.  After the holiday vacation we learned more about the 1st Thanksgiving and talked about ways the Pilgrims and Native American’s lived and traveled.

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History lessons led to transportation-time-lines and how many people travel over the holidays.  We sang “Over the River” and talked about who visited family and friends for a feast.  We talked about the importance of our family and friends and made maps to destinations.

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In one class students explored post cards people had sent them from far away and made postcards to send others.  Some students made postcards of their location, places traveled, places they’d like to travel, places in their imagination… Some made Christmas post cards…

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Cards led us on lessons about giving gifts – gifts of time AND having thankful hearts for the things we have.  We talked about gratitude for the people in our lives and ways to travel to them.  We even designed new transportation forms!

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Mi Families uses top rated curriculums to work with students of all ages.  Our littlest-learners use Mother Goose Time’s theme based kits. Our current “Transportation Station” theme was adaptable for tots to be introduced to new concepts, while tweens expanded on lessons.

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Mi Families transitions through lessons so as we continue learning about things that go we’ll discover ways animals go and how they use migration, hibernation, and adaptation to survive the winter weather here in Northern Michigan! We’ll survive by keeping busy with fun winter and holiday activities.

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We’ll also be busy developing our 2019 programs!!!!! Feel free to email Christi@MiFamilies.com to learn more about our homeschool classes, tutor time sessions, parent workshops, and provider trainings.  Feel free to also visit www.MiFamilies.com or find us on social media to learn more about our programs and network with our members/team.

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2018_19_MGT_Themes * Past and upcoming MGT themes

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My Family, Your Family

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Mi Families, and my own family, have been busy planning holiday activities.  After we finished eating up the Halloween candy we focused on healthy habit lessons.  We talked about healthy foods, ways to stay fit, the importance of dr check ups, how to properly wash our hands and brush our teeth…

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This weeks food group lessons transitioned into Thanksgiving lessons since next week everyone’s on Thanksgiving break. Transitioning through themes makes the learning process smooth as student brains relate past, present, and future lesson plans.

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Lesson plans are made easy through themes – as you can use simple seasonal activities to teach throughout all subject matters.  This week had a “Thanksgiving on the farm” focus with many materials supplied by Mother Goose Time.

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Mother Goose Time is a preschool curriculum that can be simplified for little learners and expanded on for older students.  Each kit comes with 20 sub themes to support a monthly topic.  Many pictures on this post showcase materials left over from a past Thankgiving kit.

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MGT materials are often re-useable! MGT provides craft supplies, books, manipulatives, even assessment tools.  When assessing my students I often use their continuum guidelines to help parents understand their child’s development.

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Parent involvement is important for student success in all our programs.  Whole family engagement is encouraged! Mi Families provides whole family events, parent workshops, and provider trainings in our “for families and those who work with families” programming.

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If you would like more information about our programs you can network with our team/members on Linked-IN, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube… Also feel free to visit www.MiFamilies.com or email Christi@MiFamilies.com.  Feel free to email Christi regarding enrollment or contacts for parent/provider resources.

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Mi Families is “reaching out with resources!” Resources for community contacts or curriculums, such as Mother Goose Time, are available! After Thanksgiving break we’ll be utilizing MGT’s “Transportation Station” curriculum through our “Over the River and through the Woods” Holiday theme! Then it’s time to start our winter semester! …Information will be posted soon!

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Mi Programs

Mi Families (“my families”) is preparing for our winter semester – since it’s snowing outside while I write this!

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We’re preparing for provider trainings, parent workshops, family events, and youth services.  Youth services include one-on-one tutoring sessions, as well as large and small group classes.  Classes are held in community buildings, such as the Northern Michigan Homeschool Partnership in Interlochen. We have about 200 (k-12) students enjoying elective courses in life skills, PE, music, art…

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This semester my husband and I are teaching art classes, robotics, journalism, drama, movie making, self defense, and child development at the Partnership.  Myself and other team-members are also teaching daycare providers, teachers and parents various subject matters.  One of the subjects adults work on is child development and truly understanding the stages of the children in their care.

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Our “education through recreation” programs are stage before age focused, meaning they are multi age designed to accommodate kids who are below or ahead of grade level. It is often the responsibility of the parent to decide which stage courses best meet their child. I do offer academic / developmental assessments upon request.

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Most assessments are through authentic observation, meaning student’s are observed while working within groups or during one-on-one tutoring sessions.  Tutoring sessions are individually designed to help students master basic skills.  I also try and lesson plan for group activities with intent to observe each child’s skills and struggles.

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To work on areas of struggle I focus on individual strengths and interests.  Often this means teaching through theme based units.  Right now my students are coming off their candy-high from Halloween and anticipating Thanksgiving dinner – so we’re focusing on our food groups, brushing our teeth, and other healthy habits.

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This theme transitioned from our Mother Goose Time’s Orchard based curriculum.  As we get closer to holidays we’re moving into MGT’s transportation theme with an “over the river and through the woods” traveling unit.  MGT is a preschool curriculum that I often simplify for little learners and expand on for older students.

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MGT is an easy to use curriculum that includes lesson plans, project materials, manipulatives, music, assessments… CLICK HERE to learn more about Mother Goose TimeCLICK here to learn more about Mi Families programs.  If you have any questions or would like to enroll a student for tutoring email Christi@MiFamilies.com.  You can also network with our team/members on LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest…

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2018_19_MGT_Themes * Click link on right for upcoming and past themes  …

… Non theme based programs / tutor time services (click for larger image) :

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Halloween Homework

Parents and teachers have often told me they don’t do any homework during holidays…

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I tell them we do extra – and kids love it! Holidays and seasons provide great opportunities to learn!

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For example a seasonal item, such as pumpkins, can be used to teach all subjects.

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STREAMS – or Science, Technology, Reading (&wRiting), Engineering, Art, (Music&) Math, Social Studies (&hiStory)…

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We learned across all subject matters through a Halloween theme this week.

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Curriculums such as Mother Goose Time provide preschoolers a different theme each month.

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MGT’s theme based kits can be simplified for little learners or expanded on for older students.

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This past month we’ve been exploring farms and orchards with their materials.

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I often have extra materials from past themes or use their holiday-sub-themes to transition through lessons.

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We transitioned from fall to apples to pumpkins … next week we’ll finish up our orchard theme focusing on healthy harvests.

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As we learn about healthy habits (after finishing up our Halloween candy) – I’ll assess what was retained from our orchard theme lessons.

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Most assessments with my little learners are through authentic observation – meaning I observe them during hands on activities.

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Using MGT’s developmental continuum and other tools I note their strengths and area’s of struggle.

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Using students strengths and interests I help them work through struggling areas across all subject matters.

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Some students thrive in our large and small group programs, while others prefer one-on-one tutoring sessions.

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All services are stage before age focused meaning assessments and activities are individualized based on the students.

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Mi Families (“my families”) has “education through recreation” programs for children, their parents, and providers.

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If you are interested in learning more about provider trainings, family workshops, or youth services email Christi@MiFamilies.com.

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Visit www.MiFamilies.com to learn more or network with our team/members on LinkedIN, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest … and learn more about Mother Goose Time HERE

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Autumn Assessment

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I had to laugh when everyone was crying about snow last week. I think many forget that northern Michigan often has snow in October.  Seasons are simply dates on a calendar here.  But, seasons help us with festive lesson planning.

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This week we continued to transition through fall activities – whether it looked like fall or winter outside. We transitioned through weather change lessons to using our senses to find signs of fall.  We learned about tree life, discovered tree ages using truck circles, and “built” trees with sticks and leaves.

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We identified types of trees and apples.  We made applesauce, and apple art using apples as painting stamps.  We explored seeds, skins, and shells of fruits and veggies and nuts that grow on trees.  We talked about produce and animals found in nature and on farms.

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We played “limbo while riding horses under barb wire,” and instead of hot potato we played “red hot apple” – using the MGT CD for music.  MGT stands for “Mother Goose Time,” which is a preschool curriculum.  Each month MGT provides a theme based kit with lesson plans, crafts, manipulatives and a CD.

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Although MGT kits are designed for preschoolers – lessons can be simplified for the littlest of learners, and activities can be expanded on for older students.  Older students love to help younger ones learn new concepts while they build on the themes.

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Mi Families (“my families) programs are stage before age designed so students can work through themes at their own pace. Large and small learning groups, and one on one tutoring sessions, are designed with each students strengths and struggles in mind.

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Mi Families programming meets individual needs by building confidence through ones strengths and interests.  We follow a continuum of learning guideline and use various assessments, such as authentic observations, to gather information about student progress.

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ALL students progress in our programs.  Some are on the “slow and steady wins the race” path and others leap over developmental areas, but ALL students progress.  Our “education through recreation” activities make learning fun for tots to tweens and parents / providers.

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If you’d like to learn more about our programs or assessment options email Christi@MiFamilies.com or visit www.MiFamilies.com.  You can also network with our team or members on LinkedIN, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest … and you can find out more about the curriculum pictured at www.MotherGooseTime.com

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Posted in All About Reading

Links2Learning

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Mi Families (“my families”) LLC facilitates programs for children, their parents, and their providers (such as teachers). All programs have an “education through recreation” focus – meaning participants learn through fun activities.

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Activities are offered for multi age classes through community groups and homeschool partnerships.  Depending on the class and age-range we have top rated curriculums to choose from!

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Curriculums choosen often have an open-ended approach to assist in meeting the students diverse needs.  For example many of the pictures showcased in this article are from Mother Goose Time…

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MGT is a preschool focused curriculum that can be simplified for the littlest learners and expanded on for older students.  My child development class encourages tweens and teens to think of ways to utilize the materials with 0-5 year olds.

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Themed based curriculums help us transition topics.  Last month we used MGT’s
“Friends and Feelings” kit which we transitioned to friends around the world – then weather/seasons around the world.  Now we are focusing on the season of fall.

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Fall will transition to farming and orchard topics.  Themed based topics can be used to teach all subject matters to all types of learners. Students who are “gifted and talented” are encouraged to expand on lessons and assist in teaching others.

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Special needs students are included in our programs and work through activities in their own way and in their own time.  One-on-one and small group tutor times are also available to assist them in developing new skills and meeting developmental needs.

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If you’d like to learn more about our programs visit www.MiFamilies.com or email Christi@MiFamilies.com.  You can also network with our team or members on LinkedIN, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube… You can also learn more about Mother Goose Time’s curriculum by visiting www.MotherGooseTime.com.

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My World

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This fall started off with learning about ourselves and our families.

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We learned about how special and unique ourselves and our families are.

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We learned about using our strengths to help others who are struggling.

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All of our programs talked about ways to show family and friends love.

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Infants through adults worked on caring community projects.

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Participants learned ways to communicate with people near and far.

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Technology helps us communicate and create around the world.

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Technology helps us learn more about other places, people, and animals.

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We focused on responsibility and respect for everything and everyone.

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Our littlest learners used Mother Goose Time to learn about “Friends & Feelings.”

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Older students expanded on the lessons and helped plan transitional topics.

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Topics are flowing from people around the world to world weather.

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Weather transitions to seasons and learning about local fall changes.

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Mother Goose Time’s “Orchard Harvest” pack will help us learn about tree life.

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Tree life will lead to wonderful lessons on primary to secondary color mixing in our art classes… We have many classes for children, parents, and providers and I can’t believe it’s time to start planning our winter courses.  If you have thoughts on what you’d like us to offer please contact Christi@MiFamilies.com.  Check www.MiFamilies.com to see what we have been offering and visit us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, & YouTube to network with our members and team !

To learn more about MOTHER GOOSE TIME visit  https://www.mothergoosetime.com/

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