The A. Montgomery Ward Foundation Donates $10,000 to The Day Nursery


Our ongoing funding efforts to help the children and families of The Day Nursery have resulted in a generous gift from the A. Montgomery Ward Foundation. The Day Nursery is very grateful to the Foundation for this gift that will allow us to upgrade the furniture in the classrooms, thereby enhancing the learning environment.

The $10,000 gift allows The Day Nursery to replace all of the tables used by the children throughout The Day Nursery, and all the chairs in one of the classrooms.  Cheap plastic is now being replaced by long-lasting and durable wood table and chairs.  All the new furniture will also be appropriately-sized for the children.

The Day Nursery is now seeking an additional $5,000.00, which will be used to replace the remaining chairs in all of the other classrooms.

It is community-minded foundations, companies, and people like you that sustain our 105-year institution!

The Day Nursery is grateful to all our donors. Your generous donations help us off-set the supplies, teaching, and infrastructure expenses that make The Day Nursery a gold-standard in early childhood care and education.

More about the Foundation: The A. Montgomery Ward Foundation was established by his daughter, Marjorie Montgomery Ward Baker, in 1959 to support and strengthen charitable institutions that provide quality educational and cultural programming for the current and future residents of Chicago, Illinois, and its surrounding communities.

A Special Thank You on Thanksgiving

Today, we gather to give thanks for family, friends, those important around us, and… Especially you.

We are reminded of how a community can come together to make a difference in the lives of our children.  Here is a reminder of how this happens when people care as they did to build a playground in a day.

Thank you for your continued support

From our table to yours,

Happy Thanksgiving!

The Staff, Board of Directors, Volunteers, Children and Families of The Day Nursery 


Writing Activities for Preschoolers

roll-a-letter-1 roll-a-letter-2

Getting a preschooler to write can be difficult due to several factors. An important one is, Is your child interested in writing? In the Rainbow Room, the children have been interested in gardening and insects so I took those interests and produced writing ‘games’ for the children to do based on those interests.


The children are playing Roll-A-Letter. The child rolls a die and must write the letter that the die lands on. This is a great way for the child to work on letters that they already know and work on letters that they are having some difficulty to write.


Is your child interested in cars?  You can have your child painting with cars on paper (in the picture we practiced on the slide first) or have your child drive their car on a letter road.


Before your child can write well they need to have developed the muscles in their hands that will enable them to have the necessary skills to hold and maneuver a pencil. By learning and practicing these skills it will help your child be confident about becoming a writer.


Some examples of writing readiness skills or fine motor activities that will help your child in developing the muscles in their hands are:

Cutting with scissors
Brushing their teeth
Eating with a fork or spoon
Using tweezers
Manipulating small objects (putting a puzzle together, stringing beads or moving a game piece on a board)

Putting a puzzle together with a friend. The children worked together in trying to figuring out and manipulating each piece until they finished the puzzle together.

playdough playdough-2

Working with play dough. This child separated the play dough into small pieces to give the ladybug 8 spots and a face.

Moving a game piece on a board. The child makes sure his spider lands on each rectangle on its way to the water spout.

Using Tweezers. The children are counting out frogs and are using the tweezers to place each individual frog onto the pond mat.


Cutting with scissors. Cutting paper is a desired skill but you can make cutting interesting by having your child cut a variety of things that you approve of. In this picture the children were really excited to help trim the grass with scissors.


Working with small objects. In this project the children made caterpillars with pom poms. The children then asked for other materials to add to their caterpillars such as leaves and eyes.


It is important to set up children for success. They will gain a level of confidence that will help carry over in later grades and do well. That is why it is so important to help children develop skills that will help them to become great writers. Why not help your child to develop the skills they need while having fun as well? Having your child do school work while having fun will continue their excitement about learning throughout their school career.  

For more information and activities on writing readiness you can visit:


Incorporating Literacy into Art Projects

Some parents have asked me how they can incorporate literacy into the various activities that they partake in with their child. This is one of my favorite activities to do with my students. Letter art is a quick and easy way to help your child learn their letters. It incorporates 3 different senses into the activity: touch, sight, and smell.

Materials Needed:

  • Small canvas boards
  • Masking or painters tape
  • Finger Paint (colors of choice)
  • Scents (we use cinnamon or ginger, check for allergens!)
  • Trays
  • Smocks or old shirts

First with the help of your child cut the tape into strips. Then place the tape onto the canvas in the shape of the letter you choose to work on. For our project we started with A.

Tapeletter a plain
Next I prepared our paint colors. If you are not using finger paints add two drops of dish soap to the regular paint being used. It helps to remove the pigment from clothing and skin.

It also helps to keep a wet towel or a package of wipes in arms reach as well!

The next step is to paint your child’s hand. I allow the children to choose the pattern of colors.Not sure

After painting your child’s hand let them loose on the canvas board. While the paint is wet carefully peel the tape away. You can wait until it is dry as well. Once peeled set to the side and this is what your final product will look like.

Letter A