Dear Friends of The Playing Field,
Our busy summer is coming to an end. We had many opportunities to work with our friends at Attic Angel Association as they raised funds for our playground projects. We were overwhelmed by their kindness and generosity! We were also grateful for the media interest and community support!
We plan to break ground on our playground soon. I will keep you posted on our building progress.
We are now looking ahead to the new school year and preparing to welcome new members to our School Family. At the same time, we will soon be saying goodbye to children who will be off to kindergarten. This is always bittersweet for us. Please wish our children and teachers well during this time of transition, change and growth.
Thank you to each of you who continue to receive our newsletter, follow our progress, and support our work!
Wishing you all the best,
Our Youngest Entrepreneur and Philanthropist
A three year old member of our School Family recently undertook her first business endeavor. From the proceeds of her lemonade stand, little Mara was able to purchase a toy she wanted and to make an eight dollar donation to The Playing Field as well!
Mara’s mother, Michelle drew customers into Mara’s lemonade stand by holding a garage sale. The garage sale netted $125 in profit. Michelle matched that amount and added $250 to her daughter’s donation.
We are so thankful for our littlest donor and her family!
On July 28th, over 600 people attended the celebration of Attic Angel Association’s 130th birthday party! During this process, we learned so much about the history of this amazing organization and all the ways they have benefited the Madison community.
We were so thankful to be selected to receive the funds they raised to build a playground as part of their “Life is a Playground” celebration! It was also fun to see our staff, families and supporters enjoying the festivities that included free Culver’s custard, remote control boat races, magic shows, an appearance from the UW marching band and Bucky as well as many other fun activities.
Below are the links to all the media coverage on this event. Be sure to thank the event sponsors if you have the opportunity to do so!
Get Up And Go!
The Playing Field was featured by Wisconsin Public Television in their annual Get Up and Go broadcast on August 2nd.
Before the event, film crews from WPT visited The Playing Field to record children and staff members engaged in Conscious Discipline practices. We had the opportunity to explain our social emotional program and the benefits of social emotional learning.
On the day of the broadcast, our Executive Director, Abbi Kruse, Program Director, Michelle Henner, and Mentor Teacher, Sara Aspenson had a booth where children could make a pinwheel tool to assist them in practicing deep breathing. Abbi and Michelle were also interviewed by Sarah Jacobs for the live broadcast and had the chance to share more information about Conscious Discipline.
If you would like to see the special, it is available on below from Get Up and Go. We can be seen at the following starting places: Clip one begins at 43.00 and our interview clip begins at 1.32.
From time to time, people ask about donating used goods. While we greatly appreciate the thought, it is often not practical for us to receive such items.
The No Thank You List
Used Books – When we receive books, we have to have a staff person go through them to assure that they are culturally relevant and reflect the values of our School Family. We are also limited on storage space so, having multiple copies of each book can cause a challenge.
Clothing – Storage space is always a challenge in early childhood programs. In fact, we pay to rent storage space so that our classrooms can rotate furniture and materials. While we do occasionally see needs for clothing, we just don’t have the space to store items until a need arises. When we need clothing, we post the needed item along with the size on our Facebook page.
Car Seats – Due to concerns related to recalls and expiration dates, we can not accept used car seats. We also are unable to determine if seats have been involved in an accident.
Toys – Used toys are another item that we can not receive. We may not able to confirm the appropriate age for materials. Pieces are often missing and/or broken and we must devote staff time to assessing the condition of items.
Ways to Be Helpful
Gas or Grocery Gift Cards – We keep gift cards on hand to help families during difficult times. Even cards with a small amount are helpful.
Items from our Amazon Wish List – Our teachers put items that they would like to receive on the wish list. When these items arrive, it is like a birthday or holiday celebration! (The teachers are often as thrilled as the children!)
Packages of New Underwear – New, child-sized underwear is always needed and appreciated.
Volunteer – If you have time to volunteer, there are many ways to get involved. Consider the following opportunities: Help a teacher on our next staff work day, assist with prepping classroom materials, volunteer in the office or in classrooms.