Posts inspired by deep and humorous conversations with young children, often during “potty time”   


Posts about everyday experiences, including tips, tutorials, and resources for working with young children


Posts that are inspiring, thought-provoking, or reflective

November 4, 2017

I recently presented at our state-wide Early Childhood Conference in Gatlinburg, TN. One of the topics I presented on was about using technology with preschoolers.

I recognize there is quite a bit of push back against technology in the early years, and I understand wher...

October 16, 2017

I'm not sure how long we’ve been creating clay Legacy Pieces with families at our HPUMP, but this was my first time to participate. Depending on how long children have been at the school, their family creates a clay leaf, hand, or foot that the children glaze and then...

October 16, 2017

I don’t know about you guys, but I grew up spending most afternoons and all summer climbing trees, wading creeks, and exploring the woods behind my grandmother’s house. To this day, the earthy smell of the forest takes me to my happy place.

Here at HPUMP, we recently ce...

October 16, 2017

One of the advantages to having a dedicated art studio in each classroom as well as a space unto itself is that we are able to offer children a wide variety of tools and media with which to express and explore their ideas.

We encourage them to work with something until...

October 16, 2017

“…and at the end of the day, your feet should be dirty, your hair messy, and your eyes sparkling.”  Shanti

I wish there had been schools like HPUMP when I was young: a place where I could spend as long as I wanted or needed with a chosen task; a place where art exp...

May 11, 2016

It’s really dirty.

It’s kind of brown.

It’s kind of cold, too.

It smells good.

It puts mud on us.

It is hard to squish.

If you tear off pieces, it’s easy to squish.

It’s very, very sticky, and it’s very, very messy!

It’s easy to stack pieces because it’s sticky.

A ball of clay...

April 20, 2016

Me: What are you working on?

Mary: A house so a monster can’t get in. We have to make everything big to keep the monster out. The Daddies and Mommies are watching for the monster so the kids can play and take a nap.

We recently added dollhouse furniture to our Constructi...

February 23, 2016

I believe that every classroom responsibility should be meaningful. Children know when they are given "busy work." I've been in many classrooms with jobs such as "Line Leader" which serve no purpose but to encourage the idea that being first is important. Instead of Li...

February 18, 2016

We started our day off with watercolor and mirrors. I put the mirrors out in anticipation of spontaneous self-portraits, but the children were far more fascinated with watching the process of their painting in the reflection. The children were delighted that they could...

January 8, 2016

We’ve been working hard at fostering independence, perseverance and a sense of community in our classroom by encouraging each other to try things on our own and/or to ask friends for help or ideas (rather than going straight to a teacher.)

There are so many small t...

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