Early childhood educators tell me a lot of stories when I keynote or train. And since I’ve been speaking and training for almost four decades, you can imagine just how many stories there have been. Lately, though, I keep hearing the same three stories from teachers throughout the country.
Are their qualities that we, as more experienced learners, display when we engage with little children in their learning?
Children first learn to listen, to speak, to sing, to enjoy rhymes, stories, and books before they can read or write. What we often forget is that this foundation in oral language is a critical step in developing literacy.
What considerations should we make in setting up the art/creative area? The art area should be near a sink and have a washable floor. Display art supplies so children can see all their choices and access materials themselves. This requires specialised shelving so items are orderly yet visible.
After six years of facilitating professional development sessions on the exploration of materials with teachers, I am more convinced than ever that blocks are one of the most essential materials for the early childhood classroom.
Paper chain making is relatively simple, yet requires incredible concentration and gives those finger muscles a fine-motor workout.
The value of the quality of interaction, alongside meaningful contexts for learning, is one which has to be shared with parents and carers. We need to consider the family learning opportunities for that extended shared understanding of how young children learn about maths so that they, in turn,...
Many teachers tell me they spend too much time trying to maintain a sense of safety in their classrooms and admit to resorting to more “time outs” and harsher “discipline techniques” than in the past. What is causing some children to develop social behaviour disturbances that I have come to...
We would love our children to become self-regulated, happy individuals, but do some of the strategies we use in our early years settings actually backfire in this regard?
Having moments of boredom is a good thing. It allows children time to simply float along, daydream, or imagine. Boredom is useful in that it compels children to invent, to switch gears, to think of something new, and to learn to enjoy their own company.