Did you ride bicycles around the block and play Hide-and-Seek outside with friends until you were called inside for dinner? These experiences helped us develop our senses and taught us to self-regulate our actions, preparing us ultimately for the more formal education of school.
The kinds of traditional play that children have done naturally for generations is still at the foundation of the work that we do, and need to do, with children. We have the wisdom of the sages through the ages, but we also have the wisdom of the children right here, right now.
Resonating with the work of early years pioneers such as Rousseau and Froebel – as well as Montessori – there has been a recent resurgence of interest in the UK in the potential of the outdoor environment for supporting children's learning.
It is important to make every moment matter in the early childhood classroom. Take a moment to look for how to transform everyday moments into extraordinary moments for young children…and watch the magic begin.
Not all children attend will-equipped nurseries with exciting and challenging outdoor areas. But all early years settings should be providing outside play opportunities regardless of their facilities.
We expect three-year-olds to behave like elementary-aged children, then wonder why we see “behaviors” in them. Sometimes I wish we could go back to the days when children didn’t start school until age five, and then only in the mornings.
The more I think about ways to support children in growing into productive, happy, and kind individuals, the more I realize that time outdoors may be the missing ingredient. Spending unstructured time in nature opens a world of wonder and awe.
In a world in which we are preparing our youngest generation for professions still unknown, it is imperative to fuel children’s curiosity and appetite for learning. This love of learning, along with the skills to communicate, problem-solve, and self-regulate, will lead to life-long success no...
During the last 24 years in childcare, I have been through training and consistently applied the theory that it’s not bad weather but bad clothing that prevents outdoor play. But after spending years training my staff to think the same way, I’ve concluded that it’s often the equipment that lets...
The world is full of expectation and possibility for young children from the moment they are born.