Those of you who participated in our Nature Kindergarten Orientation in June will recall that we were keen to receive your feedback to guide us as we develop future learning opportunities. enid wrote the post that follows, and together we determined that this blog was a better forum, than email, to invite you to participate in a discussion question.
Dear Building Our Compass folks–
We had a great orientation and it was wonderful to meet you all and hear what you are doing…very inspiring! We are a community of learners and thinkers. Thank you for all your attention, thought and willingness to engage. There are lots of interesting projects going on.
I am going to bring up a discussion question…if you have time it might be nice to hear from you to carry the discussion further.
One person noted and others may have thought that our Friday with the naturalists and their pre-planned activities presented a challenge to the previous two days that focused on a play-based, emergent curriculum. How do pre-planned curriculum ideas/activities connect to an emergent curriculum?
There were lovely ideas from “growing up wild” and the activities may well connect with ideas that children find of interest. It seems to me that it is still a model that presumes to know what children want to know/should know….activities can certainly stimulate children’s thinking and questions. Children’s responses to the activities can be a guide to future ideas. Some children like to name and classify but others may want to experience the joy and wonder of being outside…and these are not
mutually exclusive…and one is not better than the other. We need artists, scientists, lover of the outdoors and community members who enjoy their place in the world….there are many skills needed outdoors and we bring many gifts to our relationships outside.
I am interested in your feedback to this idea. I hope to share with the Project Wild folks some different ideas that move away from child development and linear learning and suggest another model that embraces a more holistic way. They might be interested in ideas of listening to children and promoting ways to think together with children and how they might encourage teachers to do this. Who we think the child is influences how we perceive them and how we feel they should learn.
Would love to hear your thoughts…. enid