Once a month, I volunteer with the Angler's Monitoring Initiative - in short, it's just a group of fisherman who care about the quality of the local streams and do basic testing for pollution to make sure the fish thrive. When I go, I almost always take Isabella with me. The fisherman are very good with her and she loves getting her hands dirty. As a result, my three-year-old knows the names of bugs that I didn't learn until I was in college. Yesterday, we took a bucketful of bugs and small fish home with us so that she could bring it to playgroup today for a bit of "show and tell." It was a moderate success, and Isabella was certainly the most excited one of the group - she was the last one standing and put up a fight when it came time to clear up.
Playgroup this term has been going very well for her. It was only last term that I still had to promise treats and surprises for her to allow me to leave her there. But with the older four-year-olds now in reception, what the Brits call kindergarten, there are only the littlest kids left, which has been a big boost for her confidence. I also prefer it because there is more one-on-one time with the teachers/playleaders. She is also very much into art now and brings me home more drawings and pictures than I know what to do with. What do other parents do with all of the art that accumulates with kids?