Saturday, March 26, 2011

Shower Caps at the Sensory Table?!

I just finished reading Teacher Tom's post on "hair painting" and it reminded me of two children I had in my classroom!  Generally, the children in my classroom will occasionally go home with paint or sand in their hair.  But because we tend to have a few sensory challenges, many of the children don't explore these mediums as often or as intensely as some children will.

Some, though, LOVE to fully play in sand or paint EVERY nook and cranny of paper or a box!  I had a little girl in my room several years ago who absolutely LOVED sand in the sensory table!  She would explore sand longer than any other activity we introduced! 

Unfortunately, she also wore her hair in very tight braids, and her mom was NOT thrilled when she began coming home with sand in her hair every afternoon.  Well, we couldn't just ban her from the sensory table!  I also could see mom's point...this was not easy to remove from her hair without removing every single tiny braid! 

It took me a bit of brainstorming to figure out how to handle the situation.  But, eventually I hit on the idea of having her wear a shower cap while playing at the sensory table!  Wouldn't you know it, this little girl was perfectly fine with this solution!  She continued to enjoy exploring sand each and every day, and she didn't go home with sand in her hair!  (and she looked pretty darn cute with a different colored shower cap on each center time)

The second child LOVED painting!  She loved painting so much that she went home with purple, green, blue or red hair nearly every day!  This child's parents thought this was creative, wonderful and expressive!  Her mom would come in each afternoon and ask what color her hair was that day!  She knew that the paint would wash right out in the bath and was thrilled that her daughter was expressing her creativity!  (this child's hair was very light in color and the paint would come right out with simply water)

Two completely different parenting views...but each valid.  Of course, I encourage parents not to send children to preschool in their best clothes!  I warn them that their child WILL get messy.  I remind them that THIS is what preschool is for...to explore and learn through action!  Then there are times I have to remind myself that I can use all that energy to come up with a solution that will allow for all to be happy with the outcome.  The solutions that allow for the child to continue exploring are always going to win out in my book!

Grab the "How Long is this Hall" Button!

HowLongisthishall?!
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