Welcome to the weekend! Here are some things from cyberspace that caught my eye this week…
If you’re looking for some creative energy, I just love the ingenuity of this rolling pin painting activity! Talk about thinking outside of the box! And Valerie at Frugal Family Fun shared a simple, low mess color collage. (And of course it’s frugal too!)
I really believe that teaching and learning has so much to do with the interpersonal dynamic between adults and children. Read about how to build a positive dynamic with Powerful Interactions Begin with You from NAEYC.
Pre-K Pages shared a great example of teaching social skills and social problem solving with a Cure for the “He hit me!” Blues. And blogger Michelle Kemper Brownlow made some great points about behavior and redirection in Why Kids Make Messes.
Have you started thinking about Christmas yet? Kara at SimpleKids has! Via the comments on her Handmade Gifts for Kids post, I came across this DIY book with secret compartment that I think my boys would dig. And if you’re looking for simple toys for the tiny ones, it doesn’t get much simpler than clothespins and containers. And they love it! (Great motor skill development is a bonus too!)
And just a reminder that I will be sending interview questions to Dr. Marcy Guddemi, of the Gesell Institute, on Monday, so please comment on the Age Does Matter…post with any early education questions you want addressed!
Enjoy your weekend!
Top photo by Jason Nelson.
Great Art activities…Added a few to my repretoire …The NAEYC article was good, but had a few things I would change as they had two yes or now questions to a child in one spot instead of open ended ones then later suggested to use open ended questions and a few things at the end that needed to be less directing and provide more independence for the child…Same as in the article by pre-K pages, her example needed a little more opportunity for independence given to the children… Great Article on Why kids make messes, thanks for sharing…was so happy to see the montessori mom with the clothes pin work for toddlers, as a primary montessori teacher myself…
Again, wonderful references! I visited each reference and left quite a lenghty comment @ “Why kids make messes”, loved the comment from the NAEYC post “join a child’s activity with his/her permission” ( I would love to see more teachers and parents totally interacting with the children instead of taking notes or observing or taking over the activity and we need to always ask permission), and last the secret compartment was too fun. I’m going to try this project with my 12 yr. old grandson. 🙂 joyce
Thanks, Joyce! It’s always so wonderful to hear from you!
Joyce, if I may, I would say adults “totally interacting” with children would hinder their independance in learning. I have observed more joyful children when they have achieved something on their own with out an adult directing them. I have observed more children learn and retain what they have learned when they have choosen the work independently (i.e. during their sensitive periods). I have also observed more happy children when they have taught a younger child after mastering their work independently. All of which requiring the right multi-age prepared environment:)
While I believe children need time for independent learning and discovery, and that adults need time for observation, I also believe that children benefit greatly from interactions with adults (think of it as another multi-age grouping :). This doesn’t mean the adults need to take over, but that they may guide with questions or simply show interest and let the children teach them. It was my understanding that Joyce was referring to the tendency we sometimes have as adults to disengage when children are “busy enough” rather than to get down on their level and interact. These interactions are powerful opportunities that are too often missed.
In response to “While I believe children need time for independent learning and discovery, and that adults need time for observation, I also believe that children benefit greatly from interactions with adults (think of it as another multi-age grouping. This doesn’t mean the adults need to take over, but that they may guide with questions or simply show interest and let the children teach them.” You are right. Is is a careful balance we learn in classroom management. Asking and inviting children to lessons giving them self correcting lessons when they are interested and ready for a work, then observing as they independently practice and repeat the lessons for retention.
“It was my understanding that Joyce was referring to the tendency we sometimes have as adults to disengage when children are ‘busy enough’ rather than to get down on their level and interact. These interactions are powerful opportunities that are too often missed.” Your right in that to many, parents especially, disengage with children as they do what I call ‘busy work’ to get their own work done, but I understood Joyce wanting the extreme of total interaction as she said, ” I would love to see more teachers and parents totally interacting with the children instead of taking notes or observing or taking over the activity” Therefor, I was trying to say as well a good balance needs to be in place with both child independence, self correcting materials and adult guidance for the best learning environment. And most importantly a prepared environment, with the concepts out all year long only changing in form to keep interest of the child for, to insure the best learning environment.