Places for Learning
I spent some time in the playground this morning arranging to have some plans drawn up to help with a planned re-vamp of the upper area. It actually made my morning! It is so lovely out in the garden now that spring has arrived and to see the children fully engaged and using the environment is so inspiring.
This made me stop and reflect on places for learning. I thought back to my early education. As a country girl, growing up in a small rural community in New Zealand I didn’t have the advantage of preschool. However, when I went off to school at age 5 I attended a very small school with a total enrolment of 59 students. There were two classrooms. The “little” room for the equivalent of K-2 and the “big” room for the rest of the school. What this actually meant was that we engaged in lots of learning together all over the school. Those early experiences certainly influenced my personal educational philosophy and also enables me to draw a direct comparison to our Kindy.
We don’t spend all day in our individual classrooms, restricted to our desks or a fixed environment. At BHCK we value our playground as another classroom and include provocations that ensure that the children get equal access to all curriculum provisions no matter where they are or which class they are in. This was also the sort of early education that I had.
The thing about early education is that so much of the learning is unseen. Our aim is to ensure that all the fundamental building blocks are in place so that when they move on to more formal schooling they are going well prepared. More importantly our aim is to deepen their understanding of the world so that they have the ability to make the connections by themselves.
This is why places for learning are so important. Children must have the opportunity to explore things and experiment for themselves. This helps all learning styles. More importantly, making decisions on how and where to learn helps them to grow in confidence and develop the attitudes that will define who they become.
Remember: learning can happen anytime and anywhere!!
Yours in education,