Exploration: It always fascinates me at the start of the new year when children enter into my program and realize they can explore. It seems that in the few years of their existence they have heard the word “NO” so often that they hesitate to touch anything. However, young children learn through their five senses and it is critical for them to observe, hear, smell, taste and touch everything. I love starting the year with finger painting, color mixing and medium exploration. The other day a simple set up of primary water colors, droppers and cupcake tins turned into a half an hour of exploration and creation of over 30 different colors. The enthusiasm and excitement this one child was experiencing was amazing. He was discovering a new palette of colors, while building his fine motor skills and ability to concentrate. Also, he was allowing me the opportunity to provide the Spanish vocabulary for mixing and colors. Soon we will begin exploring apples, I can’t wait to let them sift and play with flour. It tends to be messy but what they discover in that mess is far more important than the clean up!