Scéalta – The Early Childhood Ireland Blog

< Back to Blog

Together while apart

By: VERONIQUE DIDI

Monday 25 May 2020

Hello, my name is Veronique Didi and I am the owner manager of Piccolini Play & Learn preschool for the last 15 years. We operate from a community hall in Enniskerry, Co Wicklow. 

I thought that it would be important to stay in touch with the children of Piccolini during this terrible crisis.

I initially tried to give ‘homework’ to the children through our play-school WhatsApp group. The suggestion was: ‘Please tell a story of something that you really loved, that you did or that you saw during your day’, do a painting or a drawing of it and keep it for your scrap books. I had a few positive responses about it from a number of parents, but I wanted to develop it further.

With the help of a parent, I organised a conference call using the ‘GoToMeeting’ app and invited all the parents/children to be part of it. Everybody was thrilled about it. To reconnect together, I initially asked them about the above ‘homework’ and about what they did on that day.

A few interesting stories emerged and from that evolved our emergent curriculum as we do in playschool every day. One child had been in the woods and found a sheep jaw that she showed to everyone at the conference call.

Before closing the school, our most recent emergent curriculum had been ‘the dinosaurs’ and I thought to link her sheep jaw to a new learning programme. We had talked about herbivores and carnivores Dinosaurs in school, but we never talked about their teeth.

I prepared a learning programme about it and shared it with the children on the GoToMeeting app. At the end of the session I asked them to make, to draw, to paint a monster of their choice with a lot of teeth. At the next session the children showed their monsters to each other and were very proud to share their arts and crafts.

From there I developed a learning programme about omnivores and their teeth… which lead into food and what the children’s favourite food were. Their next suggestion was to make a plate with their favourite food using sand, playdough, paint. To cut and glue food from a magazine on a plate was another idea.

We did some science experiment using boiling water and red cabbage, vinegar, sodium bicarbonate and bleach solutions. The purple colour obtained from the red cabbage changed to blue, pink and yellow depending on the solution used.

Earlier in the year a grandmother gave me a sunflower head. We removed the seeds from it and March/April was the time to plant them. I placed a letterbox outside the playschool.  The parents were welcome to go and collect their envelope if they wanted. In each envelope were a few seeds for the children and their siblings. I asked the children to plant their seeds and we are monitoring how the flowers are doing during the Covid19 crisis.

The parents gave me feedback and one of them told me that her child would love to do a ’show and tell’ session. I scanned a book about ‘show and tell’ that I have in play school and read it to the children. It’s about a very shy pupil and the child who wants to do the ’show and tell’ session is extremely shy, so it helped her.

Initially I was a bit worried about these conference calls as they only last a short while, but it is actually absolutely feasible and the children (and their parents indeed) are truly enjoying the process.

I hope that this story will inspire some of you or that you will develop other ideas to inspire me on how to keep in touch by keeping our distance. 

Bio:

I am French and my name is Veronique Didi. Early years education is my second career. I had a craft business prior to my play-school which explains why I do a lot of art and craft with the children. I have a degree in early childhood education and I am the inclusion coordinator in our play school. 

I am passionate about children and enjoy helping them to develop their social skills, confidence, personalities and  self esteem. I highly value the role of play in which creativity, emotions and imagination thrive. 

0 comments Comments

Leave a Reply

Please Log In to comment:

Early Childhood Ireland(4) creche(1) conversations(1) Mount Everest(1) Siolta blog(8) phone apps(1) Spiders(1) Horizon 2020(1) Santa(2) Stress(2) Celebrate(1) INTO(1) learning bias(1) Performance Management(1) Inspired Practice Award(5) Childcare(3) Relaxation(1) Gardening(1) Culture(2) Storytelling(6) Arts(1) Halloween(2) Teamwork(1) Reflective Practice(1) Interaction(1) Creative(1) blog(40) Children(4) Learning Stories(9) value(1) outdoor environment(1) friendships(1) dining(1) experience(1) code of ethics(1) Social Skills(1) Decisions(1) Summer(1) man up(1) Well-Being(10) developing motor skills(1) Belonging(3) COVID-19 Reopening(2) educating(1) continual professional development(1) Mixed age groups(2) Communicating(1) Sequins(1) Syria(1) General Data Protection Regulation(1) Child Care(1) Trauma-Sensitive(1) Pedagogical leaders(1) science week(2) Love(3) Thank you(1) Laughter(1) Mealtimes(1) pets(1) Magda Gerber(1) InspireMe.ie(1) Mental Health(4) Potential(1) Montessori & Early Childhood Professionals Ireland(1) food(1) Exploring(1) Participation(2) outdoors(4) School Age Childcare(1) Degree(1) development(8) responsive relationships(1) National Bereaved Children's Awareness Week(1) First 5(1) Capable(1) Little Buddies(1) Ariana Pucci(1) Vietnam(1) risky play(2) Celebrations(4) under 3's(3) movement behaviours(1) Sessional service(1) Masterclass(2) Games(1) Arlene Forster(1) UNCRC(2) Performing(1) Aistear Siolta in Action(1) Support(1) Recycling(2) Inclusion(3) Super Shed Stories(2) E.coli(1) Smiles(1) Craft(1) Party(1) Liz Kerrins(1) dublin(2) Death(2) Graduate(1) Together Old and Young Programme(1) Trick or treat(1) june29(1) children development(1) Staff Motivation(1) Síolta QAP(1) play stories(2) Educators(2) children’s learning(1) educarer(1) Care routines(1) AIM(2) Snakes(1) Interests(1) Event Guide(1) Norway(2) Competent(1) Rich Documentation(1) ICBN(1) Opportunities(1) Reading Time(1) Covid pandemic(1) Minister Katherine Zappone(1) Department of Education and Skills(1) National Holiday(1) Sport(1) Imagination(3) Builders(1) PIP(1) Shoes(1) Line-ups(1) Recycle(1) Engineers Week(2) National Early Childhood Research Conference(1) Easter(1) Growing up Outdoors(1) DES Inspection(1) play pod(1) Educator of the Year Award(3) Trigonometry(1) Decision Making(1) Painting(1) Lego(2) Settling in(4) Cork Institute of Technology(1) listen(1) Identity(5) Favouritism(1) Music(3) Toby Bears Camping Trip(1) National Awards 2019(1) Story(1) Afghanistan(1) Online(1) Playschool(1) early childhood educator(2) staying connected(1) Maternity Leave(1) dining experiences(1) Seas Suas(1) Routines(2) Awards Night(1) research(6) Inspirational(2) The Lullaby Book(1) Nutrition(1) Quality(4) Communications(1) Leargas(1) interacting(2) Independence(1) apps for children(1) Empathy(1) Snack Time(1) emotional well-being(1) science(3) Mindfulness(2) Weather(1) Síolta Quality Assurance programme(1) Grief(1) collaboration(1) Nonverbal(1) baby room(1) Orla Kenny(1) St. Patrick's Day(1) conference(1) preschool settings(1) role playing(1) Children and families(1) scéalta(44) Engagement(1) mental health problems(1) Pen green(1) COVID-19(9) Dr. Emer Ring(1) Health(2) Administrative Burden(1) Wilenski(1) Infection Control(1) Child mental health(1) Learning Stories Award(3) Hand Hygiene(2) Brain(1) Deirdre Rogers(1) Sociodramatic play(1) Magic(1) lockdown(1) Training(2) Eritrea(1) dogs(1) Document Learning(1) Certificate(1) behavioural science(1) Loss(1) Educator - Leader in Practice Award(1) Growing up in Ireland(3) Emergent Curriculum(1) Plastic(1) Irish(1) Autism(4) Glitter(2) Childhood(1) Thanks(1) communication(4) Digital Devices(1) Trade Unions(1) Whole Group(1) Annual Conference 2017(2) Supernanny(1) Shapes(1) Iceland(1) College(1) EECERA 2016(1) Primary School(2) ECEC(3) NAEYC(1) Art(6) Annual Conference 2019(1) worries(1) Irish guidelines(1) Meet the Members(1) Confident(1) Frosty the Snowman(1) Fee Play(1) Department of Children and Youth Affairs(2) linc(1) Learning journals(1) early years research(2) Building Resilience(1) Body Language(1) Frustrations(1) preschool(4) healthy eating policies(1) Running(1) Childcare Barometer 2018(1) Síolta(124) First 5 strategy(1) Workplace Relations(3) Equality(1) Oireachtas(1) planning(1) Book Review(1) outdoor play(6) Christmas Creativity(2) Scéalta Blog(99) ears(1) Your place(1) curriculum(5) show and tell(1) Light table(1) MECPI(1) Traditions(2) The Jelly King(1) Wendy Lee(3) RTE Investigates(1) Irish Childhood Bereavement Network(1) Flowers(1) primary education(1) Maynooth University(2) keezy(1) Awards 2018(3) United Nations(1) Intention(1) Snacks(1) Adoption(1) Engineering Ireland(1) Small World Play(1) grandchild(1) Dance(1) Universal Design(2) iOS(1) play therapy(1) Valentine's Day(3) Kilkenny(1) Feeding(1) Wrapping paper(1) journey(1) Facebook(1) Yoga(1) ReCreate(2) COVID-19 crisis(1) Early Learning and Care Centres(1) early years learning(1) Through the looking glass(1) Qualifications(1) books(4) NCCA(3) Special Needs Assistants(1) Kids Own(1) Arithmetic(1) Confidence(1) refugees(1) play pods(1) Self-regulation(1) Elders(1) Titles(1) reopening(1) Workplace well-being(1) Twitter(1) Reggio(1) Self Help Skills(1) Equality & Inclusion Guidelines Training(1) Research Seminar(1) ERASMUS+(3) Visual Impairment(1) Prexit(1) Cognitive development(1) Partnership with Families Innovation Award(2) Mayo(1) ECCE(7) risk assessment(1) Montessori(3) CIT(1) Technology(3) Names(1) story time(2) Japan(1) Sustainability(3) Drawing(2) Nuturing interactions(1) Large Doll Play(1) Plants(1) Educator Award - Leader in Practice(1) Behaviour(3) purpose(1) social science(1) Bereavement(2) Universal Design Guidelines(1) EM Standing(1) Mantra(1) Research and Professional Learning(1) code of professional responsibility(1) Children's Voice(1) Budget 2018(1) Inspired Practice Awards(1) Investment(2) Diversity(1) Policy and Implementation Panel(1) aistear blog(3) New Appointments(1) annual conference(1) Effect of Lockdown(1) bonds(1) Time(1) Traffic Lights(1) Early Years(1) Margy Whalley(1) routine(2) Obesity(1) awards 2020(1) National Pyjama Day(1) respect(5) Iraq(1) education(2) pablo(1) Penguins(1) Mud kitchens(1) community(5) Family wall(1) Tuscan Approach(2) First 5 transitions for children award(1) National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education(1) Children's Rights(3) GoToMeeting app(1) Blocks(1) Sustainable(1) Maths Week(1) Anxiety(2) Impact(1) babies(7) Engineering(3) Infectious diseases(1) Early Learning and Care(1) Academic Skills(1) trust(4) Book Club(2) emotions(2) structure(1) Reggio Children Network(1) education system(1) Professionalisation(5) Malaguzzi(1) Home Corner(1) Challenges(1) Photographs(1) SAC(1) Exercise(1) SPICE Framework(1) Giraffe(2) Buddies(1) Vertical grouping(1) Breathing(2) Learning Journal(2) Ceremony(1) Leprechauns(1) Visitors(1) Interactions(2) budget(1) Xbox(1) Rising to the Challenge(2) Trade union(1) STEM(3) Budget 2020(1) Touch(1) Laugh(1) Covid response(1) Children's Research Network(1) Inspections(1) Appreciation(1) Advocacy(1) childcare services(1) Mo Scéal(1) keep in touch(1) family time(1) Vivian Gussin Paley(1) Change(1) Limerick(1) Positivity(1) ECEC Setting(2) Biting(1) meals(3) eating(1) Scents(1) curiosity(3) ELC(1) Queues(1) Magnavacchi(1) Study Trip(1) Policy(2) Reggio Emilia(1) maternity health(1) Pretend Play(1) supportive environments(2) UN Sustainable Development Goals(1) Creativity(5) Human Resources(1) Design(1) Funding(1) reading(5) Family(1) Self-Esteem(1) University(1) Minister for Children and Youth Affairs(1) Digital(1) European Project(1) Irish Early Years Research & Practice Seminar 2018(1) memories(1) Kerry(1) Our Little Seed(1) Maria Montessori(1) TRAP(1) Early Childhood Ireland National Awards(2) listening(1) Buddy Bench(1) Motor neuron disease(1) Providing Leadership to the First 5(1) Mark Twain(1) Cork(1) transitions(10) Early Childhood Care and Education(2) Graduation(1) risk(2) Socioemotional development(1) Jillian van Turnhout(1) Community involvement(1) Pedagogy(2) GDPR(1) Dr Mary O'Kane(1) Pobal(1) Affordability(1) MA(1) life long learning(1) Learning Story(1) reopening ireland(1) Aldo Fortunati(4) Window(1) Italy(1) Fabric(1) child-centric(1) Wonder(1) documentation(4) Maths(5) Employee(1) Maynooth(1) AsIAm(2) UN(1) The Play and Learning in the Early Years(1) Scéalta Book Review(1) Upcycling(1) learning(19) early life(1) Winter(1) Aistear Siolta Practice Guide(1) emotional environment(2) Wesco(1) Time Out(1) Pobal sector profile(1) Identity and Belonging(4) Sculptures(1) DCYA(6) youdoodle(1) feisty(1) UD(1) Care-giving routines(1) stories(3) Early Years Educators(3) Learning Story Awards(2) coronavirus(1) gender bias(1) Sweets(1) Exclusion(1) overhear(1) Covid19 crisis(1) social media(1) CPD(1) early childhood(1) bloom app(1) National Childcare Scheme(1) Patterns(1) RIE philosphy(1) Awards 2019(1) Leaders in Practice(1) Leadership(1) IGL(1) Anthony Semann(1) Jenga(1) Environment(2) Early Childhood Ireland’s National Early Childhood Research Conference 2019(1) racism(1) Meal time(1) animals(2) Mathematicians(1) Adverse Childhood Experiences(1) environments(1) Fantasy play(1) Valerie Gaynor(1) Pre-School Services(1) learners(1) Inter-generational(2) christmas(9) Inter-generational learning(2) Workforce(1) Research Conference 2019(1) World Health Organisation(1) Awards(2) Exit interview(1) National Awards 2018(2) toddlers(3) mushrooms(1) Map(1) Aistear(122) outdoor space(3) Role play(1) Exploratory Play(1) parents(6) Sleep(1) gender stereotype(1) relationships(17) Consent(1) Treasure Chest(1) TOY Programme(1) National Council for Curriculum and Assessment(1) Albert Einstein(1) Exploring and Thinking(1) Reopening Childcare(1) HR(1) Academics(1) CCTV(1) Access and Inclusion Model(2) Youtube Series(1) Treasure(1) Playdough(1) child-centred approach(1) Maths Week Ireland(1) Rituals(1) Thinking(1) Budget 2019(2) San Miniato(4) research submissions(1) play(35) art of the relationship(1) Gratitude(1) imotion(1) Loving Relationships(1) LINC Award for Leadership in Inclusion(2)

SIGN UP FOR BLOG UPDATES

SUBSCRIBE
Site maintained and developed by Cloud Nine