Learning Through Relationships

December Community Food

December Community Food

This month our community food is cranberries this means that your child will have the opportunity to interact with, eat, and share this food with their peers during lunch, cooking groups, and sensory-based activities. See below for ideas on how to incorporate cranberries into language learning experiences at home

Cranberry Shortbread Cookies


  • 1 1/4 cups of butter, softened
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 5- oz package[or 1 1/4 cups] of dried craisins chopped


  1. Preheat oven to 325 f
  2. Mix the butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  3. Mix in the flour, a little at a time, until combined
  4. Stir in dried cranberries
  5. Roll into balls
  6. Place one dozen at a time on an ungreased cookie sheet
  7. Bake 15 to 17 minutes
  8. Remove from sheets and cool

If your child does not like to eat cranberries, he or she can still interact with the ingredients by touching, licking, smelling them or even just watching you interact with them there are also more activities to do with your child involving cranberries attached below.

Let Your Child Know You’re Listening

Imitate: one of the best ways to connect with very young children who are just beginning to communicate is to imitate their sounds, actions facial expressions and words. If a child puts his head to one side and we do the same, if he says uh uh and we say the same, he will know that we’re interested in what he’s doing and what he’s saying. Chances are we’ll make a connection that develops into a conversation.

Interpret: when we interpret for our child, we say it as she would if she could interpreting a child who is difficult to understand demands a special kind of detective work. It may mean guessing what the child is trying to say and putting it into words, or repeating what our child says with a question in our voice encourages her to try again, and perhaps she can be clearer. It also can mean explaining that we cant understand and asking our child to show us.

Comment: Commenting on what are we doing when our child appears interested can be the start of sharing information and everyday activities -e.g. setting the table, washing up- and perhaps even getting some help in doing them. We also let our child know that we are interested in communicating with him or her when we comment on what she says or does and we don’t change the topic.

Adapted from it takes two to talk by Elaine Weitzman and Jan Pepper of the Hanen Center

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