prairie daze

claiming our daze and our days on the prairie

thoughts on circle time


i was stuck behind a train for 8 minutes…
in that time i somewhat frantically scribbled
lists of ideas…
strategies and goals…
hopes and plans for my preschool classes.
how to better do circle time,
how to engage all children,
how to let them lead yet keep the classroom calm,
how to satisfy the longings of different families,
how to stay true to myself,
how.

then i was struck calm.
my job is clear.
to be the peace
and love
and patience
and empathy
and creativity
and hope
and commitment
of god.

i want children to feel the joy of circle time. to feel the smooth carpet beneath folded legs, to look at the names of each other, the fabric of the color of the month, the glow of the lamp, the anticipation of what’s next, the promise of funny things to come, the chance to share a story, the reminder that we can get messy…so i pull kids in with bell and song to join the circle.

and tonight i remembered
that if all a child will feel is the pull,
then he shouldn’t have to come.
she should find joy.
he should find it somewhere else in the room.
knowing she will be found.
knowing he will be helped.
knowing that joy is her’s to have.

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8 comments on “thoughts on circle time

  1. Jen CD
    September 19, 2007

    You ARE doing that work….creating that circle on love, and INVITING little ones to participate….that is the best you can do…..more thoughts later….but to be brief….empathy, empathy, empathy….

  2. Beverly Baumgartner
    September 19, 2007

    Amen, Jen.

  3. Danelle
    September 19, 2007

    the pull…the love in that classroom…you don’t know it until you’re surrounded by it…even the kids that aren’t physically “in” the circle are still hearing/seeing only with more distance. God bless your work there..you’re doing what He has put you here to do.

  4. megan duerksen
    September 20, 2007

    they hear you even if they aren’t in the the circle.
    they feel connected even if they are in the other room…they are playing but listening with one ear…at the least.
    they need that freedom to come on their own that you give.
    and you make it so inviting that they WANT to come…eventually.
    you are doing so wonderful and i love that you desire to make it even better. no one can do what you do better than YOU.
    you are god’s love to them.

  5. Auntie Bonita
    September 20, 2007

    Amen to all the other comments. Although I’m not there to see it, I KNOW you are providing the kind of environment the kids most need. I also know that you will always continue to look at it from all angles and try to make it better.

  6. katiecl
    September 20, 2007

    new light has been shed on the term “circle time” from this post! not only are you providing a physical space which is a welcoming circle, you are at the same time circling the children with love, wherever they stand physically. even if you are doing this all the time, all day, maybe circle time is when the awareness of it is raised up. i keep staring at the picture you took. circles within circles within circles — all of them symbolic. and the way they hold each other is symbolic, too.

  7. lera
    September 20, 2007

    What a nice post!

  8. Oma
    September 20, 2007

    Amen and hooray for holy work, holy dreams, holy longings, holy frustrations, and holy, messy life!

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This entry was posted on September 19, 2007 by in family.
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