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To set up our children for success in this brave new world, it is becoming increasingly important to introduce our children to the world of computer science. At its core, computer science is simply understanding how computers work, as well as understanding how to communicate with them.

In our society, computing is used all around us and in virtually every field. It often feels like children are more tech-savvy than the older generations. Many parents feel like there is nothing they could teach their children regarding computers that their children don't already know.

Nothing is further from the truth!

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After almost 18 months of closure, Twirl is hoping to reopen its doors in early July.

Twirl used its mandated closure to proceed with some significant construction and maintenance projects. Expect to see some changes when you next visit! While we cannot provide an exact reopening date (we have learned that construction in a pandemic is an imprecise affair), we are confident that we will be able to welcome families back soon after July 4.

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Can you believe that summer is almost here? This year thankfully, families will be swimming, hiking and playing at the park. And one of Twirl's favorite summer activities is back -- the Summer Reading Program with Taos County public libraries!

This summer, Twirl will team up with libraries to bring a fun interactive storytelling experience to children's library summer-reading programs across Northern New Mexico.

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Feelings. We all have them and it's amazing how many of them there are! There are so many of them it's overwhelming at times. They can easily pile up and jumble up all together in a tricky knot. Picking them apart can be a challenge to say the least. Hands on, expressive, meaningful activities often help provide relief; loosening the tension and helping regain control over a jumble of feelings.

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This month Twirl has the pleasure of presenting a workshop for the New Mexico Association for the Education of Young Children (NMAEYC) Conference in Albuquerque, the largest early childhood education conference in New Mexico. It offers professional development opportunities for early childhood educators all across the Land of Enchantment. This year, the conference is a hybrid model providing unique outdoor COVID-safe nature-based learning for the pre-conference Friday, March 5th, and virtual presentations on Saturday, March 6.

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In the beginning of the pandemic Twirl was invited by Tempo editor Lynne Robinson to produce a weekly column for the Tempo. We called it At Home with Twirl and Friends. In response to the COVID-19 crisis, we were going for a cozy and supportive Mr. Rogers feeling, asking contributors to share support, inspiration, resources and creativity to get through these hard times. Thanks to all our wonderful Friends we now have a rich archive of columns reflecting the resourcefulness and creativity of our Taos community. Visit twirltaos.org/articles, to see what our Friends shared.

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Have you noticed how sunlight forms a star when it hits a reflective surface?

Or how you can see each of the colors in a rainbow? How about when a drop of water magnifies an object? Light is all around us and brings us all the colors we see. During the holiday season and throughout the year, light symbolizes new beginnings, renewal and growth.

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Thanksgiving week is traditionally a busy one for Twirl staff, as we’d normally be getting ready for our annual Twirl Aglow party. Our preparations begin with a trip to the woods to find the perfect Christmas trees for the courtyard. We start the day early, meeting at southside Lotaburger to pick up breakfast burritos in our trucks packed with families and dogs, flasks of hot chocolate and treats, axes and chainsaws. Then we head up State Road 518 to our secret tree-hunting spot! When we arrive, we take a moment to find our bearings, eat our burritos and watch the kids goof off, before dispersing into the forest, each of us hoping to return with the best tree. There’s always competitive hunting and the years when it snows are the most magical, even though it makes finding the perfect tree a bit harder.

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During this unprecedented era of separation and isolation due to COVID, people, particularly children, urgently need to build relationships, connect with community and foster a sense of self.

Parents can help restore their child's sense of self and belonging through storytelling activities. Storytelling is a human pursuit that crosses all cultures and generations and can help restore some of the missing elements in our children's lives today.