Archive for October, 2013

CoventryCares Invests for Early Education in Butler County

October 30th, 2013
Butler County, News, Stories

BUTLER, PA – CoventryCares, a Pennsylvania Medical Assistance Managed Care Organization, has awarded a grant to the Butler County Early Care & Education Council.

The Butler County Early Care & Education Council (ECEC) was established in 2002 in response to a statewide initiative to address the needs of young children and support their ability to grow up healthy, safe, and ready to learn. (more…)

A Teacher’s Perspective: Learning the Life of a Farmer

October 29th, 2013
Monroe County, Stories
A Monroe County PA Pre-K Counts teacher shares how she makes an early learning experience fun for everyone.
My name is Carrie Poskitt, and I am the PA Pre-K Counts teacher at Wee Wons Daycare Center in Pocono Pines, PA.
As the season of summer began to change to autumn, my students started to question and observe (more…)

A Dream Come True

October 29th, 2013
Stories, Washington County

The weather was cold, rainy and blustery, but inside, was anything but!

On October 23rd, Smartkids Child Care & Learning Center staff welcomed guest to the official (more…)

Heinz Endowments funds a two-year STEM Initiative in Southwest PA

October 29th, 2013
Allegheny County, Stories

Heinz Endowments will funds a two-year STEM Initiative in the Southwest Region, with the Southwest Regional Key, Asset Inc, and PAEYC collaborating on this early childhood project .

Through the Pre-K STEM UP program, ASSET will partner with the Southwest Regional Key to provide membership curriculum materials and professional development to 20 high-needs (more…)

Centre County early learning professional creates children’s picture books

October 29th, 2013
Centre County, Stories, What's Happening

A Classroom Assistant for the Snow Shoe Elementary Cen-Clear Head Start Center has recently created a series of children picture books entitled “Farmer Pete’s Early Childhood Teaching Tools.”

Mary Beth Bamat’s daily work with children has inspired her to write children picture books that can be helpful to both teachers and parents when (more…)

A Jump Start to My Education

October 29th, 2013
Cumberland County, Stories

A Cumberland County mom shares her family’s experience with Head Start.

As a Head Start alumni the program has been a great asset to my family.

At an early age Head Start gave me (more…)

For Colton, every day is a new lesson

Colton S., age 3

Monessen, Westmoreland County

“I have the promise to be a firefighter!”

Colton is a bundle of joy, a loving, caring and terrific son. Every day has been a new lesson and to watch how he has developed has made us the proudest parents. We want the moon and stars for Colton especially to be healthy, happy and successful in whatever dreams he has for himself. (more…)

Egg-stra! Egg-stra! Read all about it!

October 29th, 2013
Stories, Washington County

Finding creative ways to learn in a Washington County Keystone STARS early learning program! 

Just Us Kids’ 3K classroom theme for the fall is “For the Birds”, literally! We are learning about a specific bird every month; our classroom management system is birds in birdhouses; even our class pets are cockatiels. So, when given the opportunity by Pam Paletta of the Washington County 4H Club to raise chicks from embryo to adulthood we jumped at the chance!

pic 1On Tuesday, October 1 our “egg-citing” adventure began. Ms. Paletta brought us 24 eggs. We cracked one so the children would understand what they would be looking for each time we candled the eggs and then we carefully marked each one with an “X” and numbered them 1 through 23.

We turned on our incubator and put our thermometers inside so we could be sure the temperature was always at or above 99 degrees.

Every day we carefully turned the eggs three times to ensure the baby chick would not stick to its shell.

Every Monday we candled the eggs to see what was growing inside.

We set up an entire chicken learning center complete with the egg cycle flash cards, lacing chickens, stuffed chickens, chickens to measure and compare, books about chickens, and much more!

The “EGG-CITEMENT” was CONTAGIOUS! All the children in the center were coming to visit the incubator and so were their parents. We were eagerly awaiting the birth of our little chicks and keeping a calendar to mark off the days. We made and decorated a “brooder box” for the baby chicks to live in once they hatched.

pic 2On day 18, the last day we were to turn the eggs we candled them all one final time and created a classroom graph to determine which eggs we thought would hatch. Our “egg-spectation”… 12.

Day 21 finally came and sure enough 1 egg (number 14) began to “pip” (crack) and within 4 hours we had 4 eggs wiggling about and slowly but surely cracking. The children were sad to leave at the end of the day but I assured them I would stay and take care of the chicks, videoing them as they hatch.

At 9:17 p.m. the first little chick, which we named “Uno”, was fully hatched. He is yellow with a black spot on his tail and is doing wonderfully. By the next morning, we had 4 chicks and by day 22 we had 7 chicks in total.  Three yellow chicks and 4 black ones; aptly called “The Steeler Chicks”.

Our class learned so many things from this project!  From life cycles to temperatures, size, comparisons, graphing, observation skills, and maybe most importantly, patience, along with so much more! It is an “egg-sperience” the children will never forget!

pic 3Where will these chicks live now? Four are going to families in our classroom who live in apic 4 rural area and are able to raise chickens. The last 3 will be going to live at Ms. Chriss’ house, where her husband is building a chicken coop as we speak.

It will be a wonderful way for the children to be able to keep in touch with their chicks for months and years to come. Who knows, maybe we will do this project again in the spring to add to our chicken family!

Submitted by Chriss Henderson, Assistant Director Just Us Kids/East Maiden

Southwest Regional Key, Washington County Keystone STARS 4 Facility Kid Biz LLC

Kyler’s smile lights up a room

Kyler Smith, age 4

New Castle, Lawrence County

I have the promise to be a Pro Wrestler!

From the moment Kyler took his first breath; he was destined to be something great. With a smile that lights up a room, his imagination and personality shines even brighter. With these qualities and characteristics, he is very creative, intelligent, imaginative, and definitely a rare diamond. However, these same qualities are the same things that create problems in this awesome, little boy’s life. You see, Klyer is a young boy who suffers from Attention Deficit Hyper-Active Disorder (ADHD). With this unforgiving disorder, Kyler’s special qualities are often misunderstood and unwelcomed, which presents daily challenges in his little life. (more…)

Andrew T. loves to try new things

Andrew T., age 4Andrew T- Lawrence

New Castle, Lawrence County 

“I have the promise to be a Daddy!”

 My little Andrew is a very special child.  He loves to cuddle and is very friendly to everyone.  Andrew goes to a child care center where he has been for almost 4 years.  He has met a lot of children made lots of friends and has learned a lot.  (more…)