Child Development Center shows its heart and soul

This youngster is intent on making her art project something her parents will always treasure. (Shannon Patrick)

Shannon Patrick

Just three days before Valentine’s Day, children at Saddleback College’s Child Development Center were busy with paint, glue, glitter and colored paper, eagerly working on their holiday art for their loved ones.

The children spent their morning creating hearts as a project for their parents to cherish. When the heart projects were completed, it was time to explore with a variety of activities throughout the playroom: one of the youngsters played with building blocks, others took advantage of the learning computers and a few ate snacks.

“We let the children choose what they want to do,” said Rio Poller, a CDC instructor. “We have a lot for them do here. The children were excited to create their Valentine art. They even made a big one for the president of Saddleback.”

Once the children completed their Valentines, it was time for a story. Instructor Lucie Herwehe read “How Spiders Saved Valentine’s Day.” All the children sat round in a circle to listen to the story.

On the last page, a boy named Max pointed to the last two words on the page and said, “I know that part: the end.”

After reading the book, Lucie surprised the children with paper hearts. Each child received an envelope with their names written on it. Three trays were then put on the floor, where everyone got to make a four-heart pattern.

Some of the children expected that these letters would be mailed out to their parents and the heart patterns were theirs to keep. A buddy system was formed to head out to a short field trip to the post office across the street.

As they made it to the mailing room, each child received the letters that would be mailed off to their parents.

A boy held up his envelope, explaining that he licked his own envelope closed by announcing, “I did this with my tongue.”

After all the letters were securely inside the envelopes, the children met Henry, a mail carrier. Henry showed the children what he does inside the mail room and how all the mail gets posted and sent. The children were particularly interested in the machines in the mail room that have the ability to make sure that letters are securely sealed.

“How do the letters get licked?” asked one curious young boy. Henry explained that the machine helps him so his tongue doesn’t get dried out.

Overall, the children enjoyed their day making special Valentines and taking a field trip to the post office.

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