Monday, May 18, 2009


School is almost over but before it ends we wanted to invite the New Brighton Fire Department to come to our school.  Fire safety is very important no matter what your age.  The firefighters emphasized  several rules which the children were to share with their families.  First, have a working smoke detector in your home.  Make it buzz so everyone recognizes the sound it makes.  Second, choose a meeting place outside your home where the whole family will meet if there is a fire.  Third, in a fire, crawl below the smoke to get out.  Fourth, always go to the firefighter if you need help getting out.  Never hide.  Fifth, if your clothes catch on fire, stop, drop and roll!
After we talked about the important rules, the firefighters showed us the special clothes they wear to fight a fire.  Their boots and their pants are hung up together so they can step into them quickly.  They wear a heavy coat that protects them from the flames.  It has lots of reflective tape on it so they can see each other in the smokey air.  Their helmet protects their head from falling objects and they can carry their own oxygen and oxygen mask to help them breath in a smokey fire.  They look a little scary in their gear but we know that they are our friends and they want to help us.
Their fire trucks are full of very special equipment to help in emergencies.  There are many hoses, ladders, axes, picks, oxygen tanks and lots of lights and sirens.  The firefighters invited us to climb into the truck and see where they sit when they ride to the fire.  
We are very lucky to have such great firefighter keeping us safe all year long!


Have a safe summer everyone.  See you in the fall!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Como Park Zoo

There's not much that is more exciting than a ride on a big orange school bus!  And that is exactly what the Green and Orange Classes got to ride on to get to the Como Park Zoo on Wednesday, May 6.  The children packed up their moms, dads, grandpas, grandmas and teachers and headed to the zoo to see what they could see.  Como offers everything from azaleas  to zebras and if the kids could keep the adults moving fast enough they had a chance of seeing something for every letter of the alphabet.  The rain forest had a sleepy sloth.  The monkey house had several babies.  The giraffes and zebras just had a bad smell (but they are so beautiful.)  Although the flamingos weren't out yet, the old tortoise was out in that area.  I'm pretty sure that is the same tortoise I remember as a kid.  I wonder how old he is?  
To keep everyone happy, each child got a snack bag with juice and a treat to eat.  This gave the adults a chance to rest while the children enjoyed their goodies.
The weather was perfect for our trip which helped make this a great day at the zoo! 

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Raptor Center

On Tuesday, May 5, the Blue, Purple, Red and Yellow Classes had the privilege of meeting Joanne Peterson, Cinnamon, Samantha and Jamaica from the U of M Raptor Center.  The Raptor Center is a hospital for raptors and the goal is to treat the birds that are brought into the center and release them when they are healthy again.  However, this isn't always possible for various reasons.  The raptors that are permanently kept at the center have become "teachers" of sorts when people like Joanne bring them to schools to teach children and adults about the special characteristics of the raptors.  In our program we first met Cinnamon the Paragon Falcon.  She is small but very fast!  Then we learned about owls.  Cash got dressed up like an owl so we could remember that owls have big eyes to see at night, very sensitive ears to hear their food, and large talons to catch their food.  Samantha the owl came out to meet us once we were knowledgeable about these things!  She was beautiful!  We even learned what an owl pellet is.  When the owl throws up a pellet (the indigestible food it eats) we can examine it and learn about what the owl is eating.  Finally, we met Jamaica, a gorgeous hawk.  Hawks are seen all around us, on light poles, in trees, on fences.  They are busy looking for mice, moles, baby animals, etc. for their dinners.  They have large talons and sharp, hooked beaks to help them catch and eat their food.
Joanne was a wonderful teacher who kept us interested and entertained for the entire program!  The public is welcome to visit the Raptor Center at the University of Minnesota St. Paul Campus to learn more!

Sunday, May 3, 2009


In the month of May our pre schoolers will meet several of our local community helpers.  The first to visit us was Nancy Olin, the Salem parish nurse.  Nancy met many of you parents at our Parent Orientation meetings in the fall.  I continue to be amazed  by Nancy and her ability to work with every age group in our church.  Last week  we invited her to Pre School to talk to the children about hand washing.  As you probably know, young children often swish their hands under cold water, wipe them on their pants and figure they have washed their hands.  We're hoping for more then that if we want to keep our families healthy.  Nancy demonstrated how to wet your hands, lather the soap on all surfaces of your hands, including the fingernails (while singing "Happy Birthday"), rinsing them thoroughly, drying them and turning the water off with the towel, in case there are germs on the faucet (especially if you are not at home.)  We all had a chance to name circumstances  when we need to wash our hands.  Any good answer deserved applause!  Then we  "pretended to wash" as we sang "Happy Birthday" together.  Good hand washing habits can be fun!