Monday, December 29, 2014

Ponderings for the New Year

Yes I am still here.  Maybe I will keep this up this time.  Maybe I won't.  There is soooo much out there for teachers compared to just 5 years ago that many times I feel like I don't have much to contribute.  With facebook, pinterest, teacherspayteachers and all of the fabulous blogs with ideas and products I wonder if I what I share might not be original. 

I will just share my thoughts for awhile.  Today I was cleaning out my bookshelves and ran across a copy of NAEYC "Developmentally Appropriate Practices for Early Childhood Programs."  When I first started teaching I spent a lot of time with this organization and this book.  It still shapes a lot of the ways that I teach.  I am at a private school.  We have adapted the common core to fit our goals, but we haven't adopted it out right.  We can do that.  It's nice.  There are parts of the goals that challenge me to be a better teacher and there are other parts that make me think, "Yes, we can teach these things to a kindergarten child, but SHOULD we?"  And I am seeing these practices trickle down to preschool and it worries me.  It worries me that we will drill these concepts instead of teach understanding.  It worries me that we present subject matter that they are just not ready to understand.  It worries me that our environments are no longer full of wonder and exploration.

"For children to understand fully and remember what they have learned, whether it is related to reading mathematics, or other subject matter areas, the information must be meaningful to the child in context of the child's experience and development." (DAP - NAEYC)

This is my goal for teaching in this new year.  Making learning meaningful.

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