The News Blog
November…A Time for Friendship

November is all about using the traditions of Thanksgiving to creatively build the children’s understanding of friendship… because together friends can accomplish far more than an individual alone.

DSCN1725For the past nine years at CUMP, the four year old and Pre-K classrooms have been making friendship stew with the help of their teachers. All good stews need a variety of vegetables so each child is asked to contribute one ingredient such as tomato sauce, season salt, corn, green beans, lima beans, potatoes and diced tomatoes. Everyone is bringing something to the table just as the Native Americans and Pilgrims did to their first Thanksgiving feast. On the day of the mock Thanksgiving, the children actively participate in making the stew by adding ingredients and stirring the pot. After all their hard work, they sit down together, share a blessing and enjoy their meal while Ms. Mohr reads a Thanksgiving story. Though Ms Tammy admits that the buttered bread is the “star of the meal,” most kids surprise themselves (and their taste buds) by truly enjoying their Friendship Stew.

Over the years, the concept of Friendship Stew has been modified to get our younger students involved as well. The three year old classrooms bring various kinds of fruit to combine into a tasty fruit salad which they eat together in friendship while discussing and learning about all of the fruit they provided. Meanwhile, the twos make a Friendship Blessing Trail mix that they eat while the Lending Library’s Ms. Catie, dressed as a Native American, uses flannel pieces to tell the story of Thanksgiving.

This year CUMP was excited to be able to provide a special pot of stew and the ingredients to make their own Friendship Fruit Salad to Bethel Promise Preschool – a school that provides quality child care for some underprivileged children in our area.

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