Kindergarten on Campus: A Recipe

Danny Stock

This fresh option will brighten your morning with its wholesome goodness. While the recipe requires some advance preparation and parent-teacher partnership, it is worth the effort both for the wellness of families and the strength of the community. Be sure to wash hands and/or sanitize properly for this recipe.

The Night Before

Complete MyMedBot evening screening and check that Magnus Health is up to date. 
Place placard on vehicle dashboard.
Lay out clothing, shoes, and a backpack with water bottle and supplemental snack, if needed.

Early Morning

Complete MyMedBot morning screening.
Dress child (aged 5) appropriately for cooler weather.
Deliver child, masked, to school.


Make each feel seen (beyond the mask) and valued with personal exchange.
Place students at desks spaced evenly. Allow for at least six feet between desks. Add clear plastic shields to desks, as needed. 

Prep Self-Portraits
Add individual sets of crayons at desks. Mix colors for self-portraits.
Immerse the class in a discussion of the skin colors students have created and named for themselves. 

One said, “‘Peach Cinnamon’, that’s my color. I see cinnamon at home, and it’s kind of my color and also peach is mixed in the color, too.”

Another spoke up, “It’s a little buttery.”

A third said, “I like my skin color and I call it ‘Sugar Brown’ because my mom says my skin is the color of brown sugar.”

From the other side of the room—“‘Peachcake!’ I said ‘Peachcake’ is the name of my skin color.”

“‘Light Brown Sugar’,” another student said. “I’m a little brown but not as dark as chocolate.”

“And I’m ‘Chocolate Brown’,” another student replied happily as he lifted his chocolate brown arm and his matching self-portrait.

Let self-portraits stand. Gather handwriting books and practice forming a letter and a number with a graceful curve. 

Wash or sanitize before preparing this item.
Send students with six feet or more between each to run and climb. Lead a game of Hide-and-Seek and Freeze Dance.
Listen for the proper tell-tale shrieks of delight from children at play to know you’ve done Recess right.

Snack it up
Wash hands and keep students seated for fresh baby carrots and whole grain bars from the new dining team.
Read aloud from suggested titles: 

  • All the Colors We Are, Katie Kissinger
  • The Colors of Us, Karen Katz
  • Skin Again, bell hooks
  • Mixed, Kip Fulbeck
  • All the Colors of the Earth, Sheila Hamanaka
  • Shades of People, Sheila M. Kelly
  • Happy in Our Skin, Fran Manushkin
  • Looking like me, Walter Dean Myers
  • Chocolate Me, Taye Diggs
  • Mixed Me, Taye Diggs

Wash (and use the bathroom as needed).

Physical Education
Whip your body into shape and stay fit for life.
Learn agility drills with William on the field or learn a new dance move in your designated grid spot in the gym. For a bonus workout, climb the stairs several times to go to your class’s designated bathroom because you are five-years-old and have to go every time anyone says the word “bathroom” or “water.”
Sanitize and emphasize the importance of keeping our distance.

Position ten students back at desks.
Invite students to explore with their personal (and sanitized) linking cubes at their desks.
Practice with different ways to make five by hiding a different number of cubes under your hand each time (I know I have five cubes but I see only three so that means... two must be hidden!)
Wash up and put away materials.

Calming Creativity
One-by-one send students to bring their individual play-dough kits from their cubbies.
Shape into dinosaurs or necklace beads or jack-o-lanterns.
Students raise hands to share or compliment another student’s creativity.
Clean up, wash up, and prepare to go home.

Difficulty level—7.5
Serve—in an environment that honors the integrity and worth of each individual in a diverse school community—a place where students love to learn and learn to change the world.


  • DEI
  • Lower School