In the course of the last two months I have found myself participating in deep and interesting dialogues about the phenomenon - "provocations"
it is a word often used in a Reggio Emilia context... and yet there seems to be a lot of uncertainty about where the idea of provocation really comes from, is it even something used in the Reggio Emilia Approach, and how is it being interpreted...? (see the link below for more discussion about that) And, in a way, this dialogue has g
Over on my Instagram I use the hashtags #slowdown and #lookclosely often... usually including photos of bugs and flowers, raindrops or something else... It is not just about taking close-ups of nature... but a means to be divergent.. not to follow the speed of society, not to just stay within the status quo, to see things as we always see them... but to pause, to look around, to take notice and discover new possibilities and new perspectives. This is the same for the "thinkin
So how comfortable are you adding to the work of others...?
here is what some teachers wrote down at one of the workshops at Boulder Journey School in the summer of 2013... I appreciated having a blueprint or framework to build from/on the work inspired me it was an interesting concept to add to someone elses work/art - feeling like you were misrepresenting their idea it makes me feel uncomfortable adding to or modifying someone elses work. Collaborating makes me feel more
I often write that preschool/school is an institution - with its walls around - and how we need to be jumping up to see over the wall... to see what other possibilities there are rather than just protecting what is within.
I want to tear these walls down and create something new... something that some schools are already doing and are starting to to do.
How often is learning seen as something that happens within the walls in a specific way... there is a push for learning t
Those of you who have followed me for many years will know that I have been working with children using philosophy with children... not a specific approach such as P4C (philosophy 4 children) or Socratic Dialogue, but something that I have created myself together with my various colleagues over the years. Mostly because none of these techniques I felt, as a whole, could meet the specific needs of the children I was working with... in part due to the fact most is written about
Over the years I found that I swing from having great faith in educators to suddenly feeling overwhelmed and that we are never going to achieve true democratic classrooms/learning where there is participation and respect and real learning for all. And in this I mean not just in early education but throughout school. To be honest it's not really the educators I have issue with... I think 98% strive to be the best they can for the students/children they work with - unfortunatel
I have, over the years, frequently seen discussions around whether or not young children should be engaging in circle time...
and really this is one of those things that cannot be a "to do or not to do", as, with most things in life, it is not about what we are doing, but why we are doing what we are doing. There is not just one way to do "circle time" and yet most dialogues about the subject suppose that this meeting of children is about a teacher talking and the children
I am not a particularly political person... I have said this before... and this is not a post about politics - but this post does touch on the fact that education is a political entity.
It is through education that values are taught.
It is through education that history is taught... what is included, what is excluded, what bias, who is the narrator
It is through education that children are being prepared for society... especially in standardised education where there are r
I have read about 18 things highly creative people do differently... and realised that all 18 of them I could check off... actually did not expect that... so much so I kept reading to see if there was more... surely I could not have checked off them all... I even had to count to make sure!! Although I have to admit I do mindfulness in my own way...
Read the Huffington Post here....
What DID get me thinking is the amount of time you need to daydream, to observe, to people w
Valentine's Day is one of those (many) traditions that I wonder why it is celebrated in early year's settings...
It is a tradition connected to romantic and sexual love - which I think is not the most suitable topic for the very young... But there is no getting away from it... there are hearts and the mention of love all over the place... I also reflect about all the activities that appear online just before Valentines day... a whole array of pink, and hearts and love...
I truly believe in the competence of children, but also understand the importance of being supportive so that we do not let them get out of their depth. For me the competence is about what they can do now. What they are capable of, and that they have experiences and knowledge than can contribute to expanding our own adult experiences and knowledge. There is mutual learning. I am very aware that as an adult I have accumulated more experiences, collected more knowledge and amas
During a visit to London I spent a morning in the Natural History Museum, and it has inspired this post... I read the following... Which made me think of the Reggio Emilia Approach and the focus of the art studio/atelier as a language of learning. Using drawing and art as a method to look closer and to explore. This is something I have done over the years - myself as a child, and also as an educator. Art and creative expression has always been a strong path of exploration. Th
Often stories talk about the big, bad wolf... there is Red Riding Hood and the Three Little pigs to get you started... this has meant that in dialogues about animals wolves are always seen as bad. This fascinated me that the children would see things as wholly bad and wholly good - and when exploring friendship, relationships, empathy and emotions - this concept of good and bad can be really interesting.
The thing is wolves are really expressive, so they are a great example
There is a sense of great sorrow and frustration within me at the moment as I try to deal with what is happening in my family and what is happening around the world. On Friday (in August 2018) my son started medicating for his ADHD - he has a diagnosis of autism/ADHD and t it has been a constant uphill battle with the school system to try and create a learning environment that encourages him to learn... something that we have not yet achieved. He is constantly seen as a probl
This is a post I have been thinking about writing for some time after reading a comment that preschoolers are not capable of metacognition... and yet I have seen young children thinking about thinking... and using it to their advantage. I would say that metacognition features strongly in young children's learning... it may not always be verbalised the way adults are used to being able to recognise it as metacognition.
For instance children, from the very start, observe and