HDLH Bus Tour

We had an incredible time with everyone who came out to the HDLH Bus Tour on Saturday. Child care and EarlyON educators mingled together, shared ideas, observed, inquired, and (best of all) enjoyed some WHEELY awesome bus jokes!

Thank you to everyone who participated, and to all of those who helped to make this event possible. A special thank you to the four operators who took part in our planning committee and offered to host the tour at their centres. An additional thank you to our incredible bus driver, Kirk, who was a team player and kept us laughing all throughout the day!

The first stop was at the Sherbrooke EarlyON where we were inspired by the many ways to incorporate loose parts into the environment. Educators looked closely around the environment, and many were inspired by the bulletin board that read “WHAT DOES PLAY MEAN TO YOU?

Next, we headed to Rural Roots where the educators had presented a multitude of displays and invitations to play. Several educators took a liking to the way natural elements and real materials were used to extend classic learning opportunities. For example, using a real log for the Five Green and Speckled Frogs.

We FUELED the educators up with lunch, and headed to our next stop – Abiinojiishiik-amino-yawook. Here, educators were offered a traditional experience through a smudging and drumming ceremony that was followed by an opportunity to taste bannock and cedar tea. Miigwetch! 

Last, but not least, we arrived at Nanabijou. Here, the educators from Nanabijou were excited to share their talents with us. As we made our way through the centre, we discovered the concept of ateliers and observed new ideas for incorporating nature into the program.

Below is a snapshot of some of the learning that took place throughout the day:

“I was able to gain a new understanding of how educators foster the 4 foundations through materials and how to extend children’s learning through the use of loose parts”

“I enjoyed how the EarlyON Centres celebrate their families and I feel I can build upon these ideas and traditions.”

“I really enjoyed the indigenous teachings. I will be able to bring these new ideas back to our program and learn with our families.”

“Documentation doesn’t have to be difficult, it can be very simple.”

“Great to see different views. Can we network more often?”

Loose Parts Bank

Communities Together for Children is excited to introduce their new Loose Parts Bank where educators can give unwanted materials and take materials that can be used in their programs for a variety of purposes. This is a great way to put into practice some of the ideas from the Loose Parts books that we gave out earlier this year.

Daly and Beloglovsky define loose parts as “alluring, beautiful found objects and materials that children can move, manipulate, control and change while they play. Children can carry, combine, redesign, line up, take apart, and put loose parts back together in almost endless ways. The materials have no specific set of directions, and they can be used alone or combined with other materials” (2015, p. 3).

Please see HERE for more information about CTC’s Loose Parts Bank.