Clay: Don’t Forget the Explore Stage

I think many times when it comes to material introduction, we jump to the "create and make stage" yet forget the explore stage. Yes! The magic and wonder of the explore stage is crucial! The language of clay! It’s different from playdough. Clay comes from the earth....

Hopes and Dreams featuring The Orchard School

Wow.  I love how social media connects us.  The Orchard School in Plano, Texas saw the hopes and dreams project for families on our Instagram and brought a new spin to it. They made a Faculty Hopes and Dreams hanging! Something that would be incredible if we all did...

Going Beyond Cupcakes: Reggio Inspired Birthday Traditions

Birthday Traditions are an important component to celebrating children in your class. A birthday tradition celebrates the day with a special tradition rather than food. It goes deeper than the cupcake and engrains from an early age the importance of celebrating one...

 3 Steps to Creating a Hopes and Dreams Display

One of the most meaningful family projects is the Hopes & Dreams Display.   This is a visual piece displayed all year long in the classroom.  It holds the hopes and dreams of the families for their child in your class. There are basic 3 steps to creating a Hopes...

Reggio Inspired – Lights

The following photos are from the classrooms at my school. My colleagues have created such glorious spaces.  I am going to post a series of elements. Today's element is lighting.  There are two main types of lighting in today's photos - twinkle lights and lamps....

Math Gnomes: Plus

I think Waldorf Math Gnomes are one of the most magical ways to introduce the math processes!  It all begins with a story! Once, a long time ago, there lived a Gnome King.  He loved the jewels found deep in the earth and asked for special helpers to fill his treasure...

I like Myself Project

This is a project from one of my colleagues - Jennifer Dean.  Her documentation of the project is so well done - I can let it do the talking. . .                 Thank you Jennifer for sharing your wonderful...

Inspire School in Taos

  I just had to share a peek into the Inspire school in Taos, New Mexico. Inspire is a Reggio inspired bilingual child care. As you walk up to the front door - there is chicken wire running along side the railing with children's and adult's weaving.  So...

Boulder Journey School

Last month I had the pleasure of attending the Boulder Journey School Conference.  It was a wonderful, thought-provoking gathering.  I highly recommend this conference for an enriching professional development experience.  (And the thrift stores in Boulder are...

Let It Go. . .Frozen

The movie Frozen has dominated the children's conversations and they absolutely love singing "Let It Go." A few weeks ago I decided it was time to channel the energy into a collaborative art project. Day One:  I put out different shades of purple and blue tempera...

Jennifer’s Handmade Twig Paint Brushes

I had to share the pure magic Jennifer Dean created in her art center! She had handmade twig paint brushes! The children had handmade paint brushes PLUS materials to make their own! Q-tips on a twig (wrapped with twine). Parsley wrapped on a twig. Cotton balls wrapped...

Picasso’s Playdough

Guess what?!!  I am a contributing blogger to mom.me.   I am loving the opportunity to share my ideas with parents.  My latest post is my Picasso's Playdough Project.   I took loose parts, playdough and inspiration from Picasso's abstract portraits.  The level of...

Jennifer’s Reggio Inspired Classroom, Part One

I must admit. I am sooooo lucky. I work in a school where my colleagues are striving to bring amazing educational environments. Jennifer Dean, a kindergarten teacher, has created pure magic in her classroom. I just had to share!  Let's go take a peek. . . Loose parts...

Jewel Sight Words, Part 2

There are so many things you can do with Sight Word/Alphabet Jewels.  I wanted to share a bit of my process. . . First, for emergent readers you MUST check LaDonna Wicklund's I Can Read Songs.  I highly recommend these materials.  She has a very engaging DVD with...

Splish Splash!

A peek at Rosa Parks outdoor play: Look at these rich and powerful play experiences.  Boots are a must. Rosa Parks now has classroom sets of rubber boots for water play - because of the ebook purchases many of you made. Thank you so much for your purchase! You can...

Easy Peasy Letter & Sight Word Jewels

I love making special gems and jewels to help motivate my students to learn critical skills like letters, letter sounds and sight words (see method here).  But my original method was way too time consuming.  I needed easy peasy.  I had a bag of those big sparkly...

A Sneak Peek! Rose Rock School

I am so excited to share a wonderful jewel in the heart of Oklahoma - Rose Rock Waldorf School!  This school was founded by Shanah Ahmadi as an in-home childcare facility in 2010.  Shanah's goal is to provide a warm and home like environment for young children in a...

Who is that Mystery Reader?

I love having "Mystery Readers" and it has been an important part of my classroom for years.  There is nothing more exciting to a student than to have a family member read to the class.   I did not think it could get any better until I started working with my...

The Human Game Board

The human game board is so simple - yet so fun! A game pathway is created with laminated sheets of construction paper. I made "stones" that are leading to the Red Goblets. The beautiful thing is that the path can be set up anywhere in any configuration. We use a large...

Chinese Painted Fans & Dancing

I am always amazed at the level of joy and engagement the exploration of the Chinese New Years brings to the classroom.  It is richly embedded with academic learning (for example see Chinese Counting Set ) in a way that addresses multiple learning styles and needs. ...

Building the “Great Wall” of China

Building the Great Wall of China with brown bags is a great collaborative project.  Today the class worked together to create a wall as long as they could.  It required placing the bags side by side.  The children had to make decisions about which directions the wall...

Recycled Chinese Dragon

I saw this Chinese New Year's Dragon last year at Zarrow Art Center.  It was created as a collaborative, multimedia, recycling project. Children from kindergarten through 6th grade students from Kendall-Whittier Elementary School took part under the direction of Art...

2014 Create Your Year Planner! New Years’ Resolution Solution!

Click HERE to download. This is my gift to you!  I appreciate you all so much! This playful planner has been created to give you access to an amazing year!  There are 71 pages of creating-your-year-goodness.  Forget those resolutions and make true changes! A few...

The Story Table

The Story Table is a vital part of my classroom.  It is a miniature world of nature complete with animals. STEP ONE:  The Base - I like to use a strong base so children can push on it and it will not collapse.   This is a shelf laid flat. STEP TWO:  Cover the shelf or...

Self-Identity Chandelier

This is my current identity panel.   I love it! I found this really great screen door at a local antique mall. I like to set up the Bead & Wire Center with a mat at each spot.  I prepare the wires by placing a bead at the end of the wire (see photo below).  I...

Featured Follower: Susan Meyer

There are people who cross your path and you instantly connect.  Susan Meyer is one of those people for me.  She has been a follower of Fairy Dust for as long as I can remember.  I think what really captured me was her incredible gift for photography.  It is...

New E-Book!

  NEW E-Book!  Ever-Changing Environments: A Pictorial Overview of Materials and Design at Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center!  ON SALE! Inside the pages of this ebook you will find hundreds of gorgeous full-color photographs of Rosa Parks Early...

Autumn Collaborative Painting

I love group paintings. I began by setting out a canvas I had painted black.  I put out a variety of fall colors including purple (tempera). I just let the children paint.   I put the canvas out everyday for a week.   I just let it unfold as the children decided what...

Multi-Dimensional Sensory Table

There is something magical about boxes.  Add those to the sensory table and it is pure magic! Tubes and funnels where attached to a large boxes taped between two small sensory tables.  I put openings on all sides of the box so the children could move the rice in...

Dice Art

This is a very simple but effective arts integration idea for reinforcing number quantities 1 -6.   It is a great way to check 1:1 correspondence and number conservation. Each child will need: a dice, a construction paper blotter (Dapper or Bingo) paint bottles How to...

Teaching Children How to “Make Their World”

Elizabeth des Roches is a Wild Waldorf Mama & a Vintage Crafts Explorer. Just over 3 years ago – she & her husband decided to sell their house in Toronto after buying a beautiful old house in the French countryside. They packed up her books & materials,...

A Fall Nature Table – How to Create Your Own

GUEST BLOGGER:  Elizabeth des Roches Elizabeth des Roches is a Wild Waldorf Mama & a Vintage Crafts Explorer.   Just over 3 years ago – she & her husband decided to sell their house in Toronto after buying a beautiful old house in the French countryside.  They...

The “Three Little Pigs” Playdough

This is a super fun playdough center - perfect during the fairy tale, The Three Little Pigs.   I make a big batch of brown playdough and put out the three materials the three pigs used to build their houses.  I let the children know that they can build a house for...

Sensory Table Mojo – Part 1

I love love love putting weird and wonderful things in my sensory table.  This is an old farm milk strainer.   I set it in the wire holder of an antique apple strainer.   It worked perfectly. It is magic. . . This was just a little sensory table that created big...