We had the most WONDERFUL time in our classroom this week learning in our Spring Time Fun!!!
Mrs. Zollo and I continuously focus on infusing learning into playing to better engage our kiddos and develop deep levels of knowledge retention. Trends in Early Childhood Education are moving away from structured, teacher lead activities and moving towards free-flowing, play based learning. Our 3 & 4 year old friends are just not developmentally ready to sit at a table for 30 minutes and listen to some adult 'tell' them things or instruct them to create complicated, multi-step art project master pieces. God gave our littlest of friends an untapped imagination that us adults can't even imagine!
-And it is my job as an educator to let that imagination soar, and infuse learning into their playing and exploration. As a result, I work to build up their skill sets based upon their feelings of success, accomplishment and fun.
We had the most AMAZING guest speaker, Cindy Terebush, at our Open House this past week. Cindy is an Early Childhood Education Consultant, author, researcher, speaker, mom and all around dynamic lady!
She has done extensive research in the areas of brain development and optimal strategies for age appropriate learning techniques, behavior strategies and much more! She has amazing tips on optimally educating and engaging our littlest of ones and invaluable concepts regarding behavior management. Thank you, Cindy!
As an educator and a mom of 2 kiddos, I am LOVING her book that can be found HERE and soaking up the info. on her BLOG!!! I can assure you that I am passing along this information solely because this lady was a 'game changer' for me. If only I would have come along her when my kiddos were preschoolers.... But there's still time :)
On to our fun, classroom learning!!!! We started the week off with our Gardening Center. The kiddos had a blast!!! They planted, seeded, weeded, scooped shoveled, potted and more!!! The fun and learning that took place about flowers, veggies, sun, air water and all of God's great gifts in nature was AMAZING!!!!!
We also had a Bug and Critter Science Center. Wow, did the kiddos LOVE playing with our bugs, lizards, snakes, reptiles, centipedes, and more? We practiced counting (can I say centipede legs), sorting, grouping, and even pulled in a little color recognition camouglage session. We also used magnifying glasses to explore concepts of big & small and observe the tiniest of details on our spring time critters.
Once again... Thank you ALL for sharing your precious joys with me each day. They truly are a gift from God and brighten my perspective in life each and every day I see them. I know Mrs. Zollo feels the same way!!!!