At Queen Emma Preschool, January is dedicated to learning about the concept of "community." As a part of the whole school curriculum, throughout the year, students learn who they are and then slowly go through the layers of people that exist around them, broadening their understanding of the world. Starting with their "home" community, they branch out to their QEP classroom and then learn about their "neighbors" in other classrooms by taking turns visiting each other. "We have friends in our class, and we have neighbors in all the other classes. At QEP we are a community too, and everyone works hard and helps each other every day," says Susan Okoga, Director of Queen Emma Preschool.
Taking a step outside the school community, they discover that a community is not only where they live and play, but also where they work. To explore this, each class holds a "Community Helper Week," an exciting time where the preschoolers learn about specific jobs or "helpers" and what roles they play in the community. The older classes, Leialoha and Aloha Kamaliʻi, spent their Community Helper Week as bakers and have a bake sale! They learn about what a baker does from start to finish.
Last Friday, Leialoha just wrapped up Community Helper Week with their bake sale. "Our students planned out the menu, reviewed recipes and discussed ingredients. Then got whole class involved in the actual baking process," said Shelly Kong, Leialoha teacher.
Students followed recipes, measured, mixed, packaged and of course, taste-tested all of their creations for the bake sale. "The day before the sale, we tell the kids that they have to report to work by 6:50 a.m. so that the shop can open up by 7 a.m.," said Kong. "The parents are floored to see all of the kids ready with their chef hats on, behind a counter full of all these tasty treats when the shop opens up."
Each student plays the role of the cashier when their customer-parent is ready to checkout. With each item only costing $1, the bills give students an opportunity to practice counting in a meaningful way.
Every class explores Community Helper Week in their own unique way. The Aloha Kamali'i class will be holding their bake sale at the end of the month.
In all, the Leialoha Bake Sale was a success. The class took a vote and decided to use the money towards a new class toy for everyone to enjoy.
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