Nov 9, 2009

Let's Find Out About Pilgrims!

Today during my Preschool Group (Social Studies/Science) I was able to teach the 4 year olds about the Pilgrims. I must say that this was my favorite lesson that I've done by far... The kids listened so intently and I was able to talk to each group for a good 10 minutes (which is quite a lot for their age!). I started off by asking them a few questions...

What holiday is coming up comes between Halloween and Christmas?
Various answers included-Valentines, my birthday, and Father's day...

Why do we celebrate Thanksgiving?
Not one single child out of approximately 30, knew the answer to this one. I hope that it is just because they are too young to remember last year's.

I told the children all about the Pilgrims who left their homes because the King did not give them religious freedom. How they could not pray or worship to the true God the way they saw fit. I told the kids that they had to "run away" by getting on a ship (lesson on the Mayflower voyage to follow Thursday), and come all the way across the ocean to America.

When I told my kiddies that when the Pilgrims landed there were no houses, or grocery stores, or Walmarts, they looked at me wide-eyed and full of curiosity. It was totally amazing, the way they seemed to be so captivated by this story. I had no pictures and so I continued just to talk my way through the Thanksgiving story. Never, ever, ever have I had their attention so well. Unless you work with young children will you understand the wonder of this. I am usually lucky if I have about half the kids attention, but today, I think I got through to all of them.

When the kids left my group, they seemed a little more solemn, more serous, and hopefully more thankful. I taught them that Thanksgiving is a fun time to gather with friends and family to eat good food, but more importantly it is a time for us to remember the Pilgrims, why they came here, and all the hardships they endured just so they could worship God.

If someone would have told me five years ago that someday I would be teaching 3-4 year olds Social Studies and Science, I would have laughed. Afterall, I didn't like young children and I especially hated Science! Now today, when I completed my lesson, I couldn't help but feel a sense of accomplishment and pride, for yes, I do love my job and today it was more than ever...

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