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Journey of the Bears

December 1, 2021 | Dorota Chester

The Bears were introduced to welcome the children, and give them a sense of comfort and belonging with a new friend for them to cuddle during the school day.

The children, along with the teachers, created a plan for their bear. The plan began by naming their bear and personalizing it.

The preschoolers drew the bear, giving it personality by the way it dressed including accessories and hobbies. They learned necessary, everyday-skills like cutting felt, sewing buttons, glueing unique details.

After following the plan that they drew, the bears are ready to socialize! Using the bears, the children built friendships and got to know the others in the classroom. Now every preschooler has their own friend when they need to feel safe and secure. They also have a subject to begin a conversation with others, telling them about their bears.

Grown-ups at home can now start conversation about their child’s bear and the other bears in the classroom.

We’ve completed the design! Now it’s time to get to work on the clothing.

Dorota Chester

Assistant Teacher, Preschool Trees

Dorota Chester has been a member of the Mustard Seed School community for almost two decades, first as a parent and volunteer and then a staff member. Her love for education started when she was a child in Poland and participated in the national scout organization, in which she quickly gained a leadership position. After pursuing an education degree over 30 years ago, she taught children from first to third grades.

When she moved to the United States, Ms. Chester’s passion for teaching continued. She taught at a Polish supplementary school during the week and on Sundays taught religion classes at a local church. When her first son attended Mustard Seed, she saw the passion of the staff and joined them as a volunteer for the many years that her three sons were students. In 2011, the opportunity arose for her to become a full time first grade teacher at Mustard Seed and she jumped at the chance.

During her time off, Ms. Chester can be found at the beach, swimming, and biking. She enjoys sports and spent many years shuttling her boys to sports practices and games. She loves to cook, especially stuffed cabbage, pierogies, and cucumber soup.

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