Indy 500 and Day Nursery have long history in our community

 In In Our Classrooms

Madeline worked with great concentration on weaving together a black and white checkered flag.

I have been reminded by the media several times this month that  the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is celebrating  its Centennial this year.  Day Nursery would like to welcome the folks from 16th and Georgetown into our club.  Not that we’re bragging, but we had already been serving the community for 10 years when the Speedway roared to life.  As our Executive Director, Carolyn Dederer noted in Leading the Way: A New Century of Excellence in Early Childhood Education, “Society’s understanding of brain development and the profound responsibility of early education has changed dramatically since Day Nursery’s founding in 1899.  Yet, instinctively, those early pioneers recognized the value of caring for the young and the vulnerable.”  The long history of  the Indy 500 and Day Nursery came back full circle in my mind this week when I was visiting the Preschool 1 class at the Day Nursery Indiana State Government Center.  Teachers Tonia Jaggers and Connie Anderson Muncie had the 3 and 4-year-old children in their classroom engaged in a wide variety of activities, including weaving a black and white checkered flag out of construction paper. Activities such as this race-themed project help develop a child’s fine motor skills.  As the child’s small muscles in the hands and wrist develop, they are able to perform self-help skills and manipulate small objects such as scissors and writing tools.  As children learn what their bodies can do, they gain self-confidence.  In turn, the more they can do, the more willing they are to try new and challenging tasks.  Who knows, maybe some of the Day Nursery children will grow up to be race car engineers. 

Teacher Tonia Jaggers works with Gracie on her Indy 500 flag.

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