Tag: celebrations

Lunar New Year at IPS: The Year of the Tiger

The International Preschools welcomed the Year of the Tiger with our annual celebrations of Lunar New Year. The Lunar New Year, according to Britannica.com, is “typically celebrated in China and other Asian countries that begins with the first new moon of the lunar calendar and ends on the first full moon of the lunar calendar, fifteen days later.” Because the moon cycles, which the lunar calendar follows, change slightly from year to year, the starting date of the Lunar New Year also differs. This year, Lunar New Year commenced on Tuesday, February 1st.

Parents and families of our students shared traditions from their families for Lunar New Year via Zoom. At our 76th Street location, Ms. Emi (Pre-K 2 head teacher) taught the children about the festival of Setsubun, a spring festival celebrated in her native country of Japan. Both locations enjoyed watching a video from the New York Chinese Cultural Center, which gave the children a view of a traditional lion dance as well as a red ribbon dance. (Prior to the onset of COVID-19, the New York Chinese Cultural Center visited IPS in-person.)

Enjoy the following photos of the IPS Lunar New Year celebrations. May this year give you good fortune and great wealth!

The International Preschools is offering extended day options for the 2022-2023 school year, to better suit the needs of NYC families. Learn more about our scheduling choices on our website.

The Holiday Season and the Winter Solstice at The International Preschools

Winter Solstice sing-along with Mr. Doug in the Red Room at 76th Street.

At The International Preschools, the children and teachers spent time learning about the Winter Solstice throughout the month of December, concentrating on the concepts of light and dark. The majority of the holidays occurring during the months of November, December, and January honor the idea of light via candles, the sun, the stars, fire, etc. after the longest night of the year, which is the Winter Solstice.

In the classrooms, one of the ways that the children acquired information about the Winter Solstice was by examining the holidays that are celebrated at that time of year. This is done within the classroom curriculum and through culture shares, where parents visit the school virtually via Zoom (due to COVID restrictions) and teach the children about the holidays that they celebrate. Some of the “festivals of light” presented at this time of year include Christmas, Hanukkah, the Feast of St. Lucia, Diwali, Yule, Kwanzaa, Boxing Day, and the Three Kings.

See below for photos from the classrooms celebrating the Winter Solstice and exploring the concepts of light and dark, as well as our annual Winter Solstice celebration.

Winter Solstice and Holiday Season Gallery:

End-Of-Year Memories from The International Preschools

Last week’s blog spoke about the end-of-the-year celebrations that were occurring (or about to occur) at The International Preschools. Many classrooms initiated the first (and only!) in-person celebrations to happen all year long, all of which took place outdoors at nearby Central Park or Carl Schurz Park. Please enjoy some photos from the end-of-school festivities!

Thank you for a great year!

Be sure to visit the blog in the coming weeks for more IPS fun, including a look at IPS Summer Camp!

Wishing your child was a member of the IPS community? He/she can be! Apply online today!

End-Of-Year Transitions: From School to Summer

This week’s blog post is an updated version of one that originally ran in May 2017.

Children in the Pre-K 2 class brought in baby photos and then drew a picture of themselves as four-and-five-year-olds.

The last few weeks of classes at The International Preschools are exciting for our students.  Teachers and children begin play-based learning activities to celebrate the end of the school year:  classroom parties with parents, end-of-the-year gifts, and memory books.

But after the festivities have concluded, what’s next?  The “what’s next,” for some children, can be  filled with uncertainty, sadness, or fear.  Sometimes, these feelings can result in regressing behaviors, such as difficulty separating from parents or caregivers.  This is an opportunity for children to develop life-strategies for transitioning between one set of routines towards another exciting phase in their lives.

Continue reading →

Celebrating United Nations Day at The International Preschools

Creating a flag collage in honor of United Nations Day.

Each year, the faculty, staff, parents, and children of The International Preschools come together to celebrate a special holiday:  United Nations Day.  More than 50 years ago, The International Preschools was created as a way to assist international families who relocated to the United States.  Formerly known as The International Play Group, the school opened locations throughout Manhattan and Queens.  Today, we celebrate United Nations Day as a way to commemorate IPS’ inception and to introduce our students and families to the many cultures that make up our school community.

Continue reading →

End-Of-The-Year Celebrations

An IPS student prepares for "graduation"!
An IPS student prepares for “graduation”!

Each May, The International Preschools celebrates the end-of-the year with a variety of play-based learning activities.  It is a bittersweet time for everyone:  parents, children, and teachers alike. While parents and teachers are incredibly proud of what the children have accomplished throughout the last nine months, it is also a sad time of year, as we all prepare to say goodbye for the summer.

Classroom teachers approach the end-of-year celebrations in different ways depending on age levels.  For the Creche (1.5s-2 year olds) and Red Rooms (2 year olds), families gather in the children’s classrooms for an international potluck and children might perform a few songs with the grown-ups.

In the Green Rooms (3 year olds), teachers incorporate memory books, a photo/video collage and performances by the children.

Continue reading →

End-Of-School Transitions: From School to Summer

760a97cc25146479740451724-900x675The last few weeks of classes at The International Preschools are exciting for our students.  Teachers and children begin play-based learning activities to celebrate the end of the school year:  classroom parties with parents, end-of-the-year gifts, and memory books.

But after the festivities have concluded, what’s next?  The “what’s next,” for some children, can be  filled with uncertainty, sadness, or fear.  Sometimes, these feelings can result in regressing behaviors, such as difficulty separating from parents or caregivers.  This is an opportunity for children to develop life-strategies for transitioning between one set of routines towards another exciting phase in their lives.

The process actually begins in September when teachers spend time helping students acclimate to the routines and expectations of the classroom.  This action is crucial in helping the children feel confident and comfortable in their surroundings; toddlers and preschool-age children crave stability in their day-to-day schedules, thriving most when they know “what comes next.”  Providing consistency is key to helping children feel safe, secure, and confident.

Continue reading →

United Nations Day: How We Celebrate at The International Preschools

Happy United Nations Day!  Our UN Day celebrations have been an annual tradition at The International Preschools since the founding of the school in 1963.  The themes of peace, friendship, and acceptance run through the 2s, 3s, Pre-K, and Junior K classes at all three locations during this time of year.   Here is a window into some of the classrooms for you to see the fun and various way students are preparing to celebrate this unique tradition.

Continue reading →