Thursday, November 15, 2012

How Do You Plan for a Very Busy Day?

          june 15 016 
StrongStart is a drop in program.  There is no pre-registration. 
There is no commitment to come on certain days at certain times. 
Families can come and go as it fits into their schedule. 
Our district has maintained an open door, no cap, policy.

Now as the weather becomes colder and wetter, more and more families are coming indoors. 
My attendance has been growing each week. 
How high? Let me just say that it becomes ‘very’ busy. 
I have a big room that some days doesn’t feel big enough.

The question I get most often from other facilitators, who are also facing high attendance, is...
"How do you plan for the numbers?”. 
I set up the areas of play so they are open to all and the children are encouraged to play and explore.  I watch and learn how I can change, improve or plan for the next visit.

But most of the time the question is referring to the art (craft) table.
My answer is that I try to keep it open ended and follow the rule of thumb that if it takes me longer to prep then a child to make it, it's not worth doing.

Today's art activity was perfect for the 46 children that attended.
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             Cars, ramps, paint and room to move.
nov 15 001 nov 15 002
Offering opportunity to experiment and play with a favourite toy in paint.
   nov 15 011
nov 15 013 nov 15 022
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Children came and went, playing, enjoying, sharing.
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This type of activity gives me the time to watch and enjoy
but also to move around the rest of the room freely.


  1. Hi Maureen,
    Linda D. from Vancouver about your wonderful blog. My SS centre is in Burnaby, and I also have high numbers too...we choose not to cap or close the doors after a certain # too...I had 45 earlier this week, so I know what you mean. Love this art idea with the ramps...I've done this with just cars but the ramps is a great way to extend it....thnx:)

    1. Thanks Linda, today was another over 40 day and we did smoosh painting using saran wrap. Wasn't as popular as the cars.