Valley Pre-School hosts first Grandparents Day

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Photo by Robin Maycock

Crafting Tealights (L to R) Kylie Marien, Darlene Harris, Bobby, Melisa and Lily Hinckley.

Valley Pre-School, celebrating 70 years of educating young children in Granby and surrounding communities, hosted its first Grandparents Day on Oct. 25 and 26. Grandmothers and grandfathers from all over New England and beyond, arrived bright and early to spend the morning with their grandchildren, joining them for circle time and gaining an insight into how the playbased curriculum at Valley Pre-School works. One grandmother travelled 2,500 miles, flying in from Washington state, especially for the morning and described it as a “once in a lifetime” opportunity. Teachers extended a warm welcome to all and provided plenty of activities to engage the young and young at heart alike.

In Mrs. Tawney’s classroom, the morning began with a chemistry demonstration, which was followed by a story about a candy-eating Little Pea, pumpkin decorating, tea-light crafting, and finger puppet theater. Across the hall, children and grandparents in Mrs. Jackson’s classroom, enjoyed an interactive story of The Little Old Lady Who Wasn’t Afraid of Anything. They worked overtime in the VPS “BOOkery” making tasty treats, and together, they traced their hands for a colorful fall tree, and constructed spiders with up to eight eyes, eight legs and 48 knees. Before the morning was over, each child took a special autumnal portrait with their grandparents to commemorate the occasion.

Knowing that not all would be able to attend the event, VPS teachers arranged in advance for grandparents who could not be there to send a surprise for their grandchild to open that day. Honorary VPS grandparents Nannie Brown, Grandma Bernadette Gentry and Grandpa Don Shaw helped children read the letters and were on hand throughout the morning to ensure everyone felt included.

After some welcome mid-morning refreshments, grandparents and children adjourned upstairs, where Peggy Shaw, beloved former Valley teacher and now visiting music teacher, played guitar and led the three- and four-year olds in song, putting on a delightful concert for their proud grandparents.

The morning ended on a magical note with a visit from Millie the Witch and her puppeteer friend, Audrey Laird. Children and adults were spellbound as Millie and Mrs. Laird gave a Halloween themed performance and had everyone in gales of laughter. Kathy Jackson, director and lead teacher at the school, thanked everyone who had worked to make Grandparents Day a success, including Kim Tawney, lead teacher, and assistant teachers Sally Moon, Nancy Canfield and Lucy Kiermaier. A special word of thanks was offered to all the grandparents who made the journey to Valley Pre-School to help celebrate the unique bond between grandparents and grandchildren.

Valley Pre-School will soon begin accepting applications for its programs for ages 3 and 4 for the 2019-2020 school year. Please visit, email, or call 860-653-3641 for more information or to schedule a tour. Open House is Jan. 19, 9–11 a.m.

Photo by Kim Tawney

Letter From Afar (L to R) Amelia Ginsberg, Nannie Brown.

Photo by Robin Maycock

Sensory Table Fun (L to R) Patti Rosinski, Matthew Jensen, Natalie Butch.