It’s ironic that there are still some people who seem to believe that the faster you can move children through childhood, the more advanced they’ll be.
Long before the technology existed to allow us a real-time view inside the developing brain, a Swiss psychologist by the name of Jean Piaget explored the developmental patterns behind language and cognition in childhood. As one of the most influential developmental psychologists of the 20th century, he was a prolific writer and a pioneer in giving a developmental context to the human tasks of thinking and learning.
It’s been said that we’re all going through a collective traumatic event right now. And while we try to shield our young children from much of it, they are still touched on some level.
There’s been a lot to take in over the past few weeks. A lot of change. A lot of questions.
I’m an observer by nature.
A preschool director once relayed to me an observation she made at her community center. She watched as a mother plucked her child from the waters of the pool at the end of his swimming lesson, quickly dried him and dressed him right on the deck, and then delivered him, minutes later, to his karate class. She wondered at how passive his role in the whole exchange was, as though he was merely a passenger on the high-speed train that was his life.
I often wonder what other people see in the art being created in an early childhood classroom. What do they make of these splashes of paint and collages covered with glue and seemingly random bits and bobs?
Tapping the matching letters. Swiping rhyming words together.
This isn’t preschool. [Read more…]
Data doesn’t make the decisions for you.
That was one of the big takeaways from my conversation with Emily Oster, researcher, author, and mother. As an economist at Brown University, Emily explores the science of making good decisions based on the data. In her newest book, Cribsheet, she explores how to apply that science to the decisions that face us as parents.