• Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
  • Bloggers
    Bloggers Search for your favorite blogger from this site.
  • Archives
    Archives Contains a list of blog posts that were created previously.
  • Login
    Login Login form
Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in early childhood professional
Posted by on in Early Childhood

I have been teaching Art, Music and Movement to college students for a while. There are certain concepts we try to get across to practitioners that are important to ECE professionals, and encouraged by our professional organization, NAEYC. One of those concepts is the idea of open-ended activities.

What are open-ended activities?  Do you put out a mass of materials and say, “Go get ‘em”, like one workshop participant opined? If you change materials, are you being too “teacher-ish”?

Well, yes and no…

Because many tend to think, in this post-social media age, that each question has a right and a wrong; that the right is might, and the wrong is way too strong, we have trouble seeing the grey areas. Perhaps I’d rather say the value areas. In art, adding white or black to a color changes its value. When we consider concepts, our values may change a tiny bit or a lot, depending on what is added or subtracted. So, as Diane Kashin has written, there is a continuum between a concept such as “open-ended” and its opposite. Open-ended might mean throw the lot of your materials on a table and see what they do, and closed might mean giving children directions and materials, saying what they must do with them (generally not recommended!). But in between, ah, there is a rainbow of values!

...
Last modified on

Posted by on in Early Childhood

preschool teacher

“I just have to pass this course! I’m sending you some assignments I forgot to do at the beginning of the semester and I hope you’ll accept them This has been a horrible semester, with my aunt passing away and my Internet not working. And then, I got the flu at midterm and …”

upset

These emails (and even personal visits!) are coming in a steady trickle. My students are suddenly realizing their lack of attention, effort, or organization has now resulted in a crisis situation. For the majority of these desperate cases, I had never been clued in on the life events at the time they occurred, when I might have been able to help. No. Not until now, four days before grades are submitted.

Of course, when at all possible, I try to be accommodating and offer some assignment due date flexibility when a student truly needs it. But those requests will come at an appropriate time and will have a legitimate reason. Those students will honor the extension and appreciate the support.

...
Last modified on

Posted by on in Early Childhood

kidswalk2

By Karen N. Nemeth, Ed.M., Pam Brillante, Ed.D., Leah J. Mullen, M.A.  

What do we need to see in early childhood education now and in the future? Our hands can reach back to help our colleagues move up, but our eyes have to look forward to the early childhood classrooms of the future. The days of fragmented programs where children and teachers are divided according to special needs and special skills are over. Silos don’t work. Isolating children and practitioners from each other is bad for early education.

All teachers of young children must be prepared for children with DECAL:

Different
Experiences
Cultures
Abilities
Languages

Addressing diversity can no longer be about a few buzzwords when we actually still consider diverse people as “others”. There are no non-diverse classrooms! Diversity is about the uniqueness of each and every young child – not about the many vs. the few, or the normal vs. the.....

Last modified on

Posted by on in Early Childhood

shareasimage 22

Many in the early childhood field would agree that the momentum surrounding early childhood education throughout the country seems to be building in our favor. On local and national levels, in the media and the government, with educators and politicians, early care and learning is in the news. This is exciting, but I'm torn because although the polls are showing that a majority of Americans believe in the importance of early education and care, I wonder if change is actually on the horizon.

We in early learning and development have known for years, backed by science, that the early years are critical. We also know through research findings that professional learning is a key component in consistent high quality care. Many in the field have been shouting these facts for years! In fact, I'd argue that although our field has made recent strides forward, historically we've been moving at a snail's pace. We need a sense of urgency - now is the time for a monumental push (and perhaps a shove!) Stacie Goffin is calling on us, within the field, to develop a "collective will or a shared passion for creating an alternative future" for tomorrow's children. (Dahlin)

Did you notice in the first two paragraphs that different terms were used? Early childhood education, early care and learning, early education and care, early learning and development... why are there so many? Do they refer to the same thing? Why is it that in nearly every state there are various early childhood systems working individually, disconnected from others doing similar work. I've always questioned these "silos" that seem to be deep-rooted within our field. Why reinvent the wheel ourselves when we can tap into our field's greatest asset...each other!

Last spring, the Institute of Medicine and National Academy of Sciences released the Transforming the Workforce for Children Birth Through Age 8 report calling for the transformation of the early childhood workforce. 

...
Last modified on

Posted by on in Early Childhood

nolisten

Ask any teacher about the challenges of the classroom, and somewhere near the top of that list will be getting children to listen. Particularly in the early childhood classroom, we’re not only working with all the competing stimuli around us (squirrel!) but also with impulse control and other executive functions that are in the early stages of development. With so many factors working against you, getting a room full of young children to listen can be quite the challenge.

But there are also things we do as we speak to children that may increase or lessen the likelihood that children will actually be listening.  Here are 6 ways we may be unintentionally telling children NOT to listen, and how to correct that:

1. Making it Sound Optional

Sometimes we give a direction, but present it as a choice. “Should we sing that song again?” “Help us pick up the blocks, OK?” In our adult world we know the subtleties that imply that these aren’t really optional, but that’s all lost on young children. Adults often give what they believe are polite directions, only to be met with a polite, “No, thank you.” So make directions...well...direct.

...
Last modified on