Can I get an amen?
I am working as an instructional assistant this year and learning a lot about education (my passion). Mainly I am seeing how hard people try, yet just how stuck in the past we still are. There seems to be a bias still to having children sit and listen. OK for older children perhaps, but I am working in a kindergarten class, and we are teaching them how to read, write and add at this age!
We know based on the research (Piaget for example) and the evidence that children this age need to move, to explore, to create and to assimilate information at their own speed and in their own way. So why don't we allow them to play more and incorporate the learning into their imaginative lives?
I am at a loss as to where to go or what to do with this information. I'd like to help children learn using creative methods, not make them sit still and be so academically focused. So I am taking a class in new technology which is endorsed and used at the school, and we will see if this provides a way for children to get more engaged on their level(s).
Teaching is the hardest job in the world and I have all respect for teachers. It's a wonderful thing to see how children connect with their teachers and soak up learning like sponges. But can I fit the mold of the teacher that public schools seem to want & will it be worth it? FYI, in Sweden children aren't expected to learn to read until age 8. There is a cultural bias in the States that we put on our children to achieve early academically. That may be OK for some children who are ready for it but I see that there are many that are not ready.
I ask myself how are we making them feel but not honoring them at this time of their lives and giving them the space to feel comfortable being themselves? Put yourselves in their little shoes for a minute... and let me know what you think please. Read this too for more thought-provoking information: http://dianeravitch.net/2015/03/04/teacher-common-core-is-turning-first-grade-into-a-nightmare/
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