The Greatest of Them All

The Greatest of Them All

One material in school age care has stood the test of time. There are many great materials but this material is the greatest in my opinion because of it’s versatility, cost, and availability.

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Community Helpers

Community Helpers

An important aspect of building the learning community is inviting outside community helpers to share their story with the children. These visits invite children to think about how they can contribute to the community, help others, and make a contribution to the greater good.

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Drawing Animated Characters

Drawing Animated Characters

Drawing and other activities that children choose contain elements of both work and pleasure. Children’s work has a higher purpose and deeper meaning, as the work children choose is a path to exploring subjects of deep interest.

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School and Afterschool

School and Afterschool

In my practice with school age children, I have experienced a wide variety of relationships with different schools. While practicing in these different environments I had one goal, how can the school and our program create an environment that affords the best experience for the children and families and builds the learning community.

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Drawing With Numbers

Drawing With Numbers

Introducing children to new ways of thinking and experimenting with known objects invites exploration of other known materials in the future. By opening up the possibilities of number we open the possibilities of all things.

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Creating Suits of Armor

Creating Suits of Armor

Often one child inspires other children with their ideas and execution of work. A common activity is for children to use some of their day observing other children working in the classroom. During this time children are often motivated to try similar work themselves

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Observation and Children's Actions

Observation and Children's Actions

Children’s actions appear simple but in reality are very complex, because children experience many variables in their daily walk of life, making decisions how they are going to respond to these experiences.

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The Line Between Guidance and Discipline

The Line Between Guidance and Discipline

In conversation with school age educators one topic that is often discussed is children’s actions. What motivates the actions of children? Is there a reason for the choices children make? 

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Activity in School Age Programs

Activity in School Age Programs

Educators in school-age programs spend much of their time trying to create new activities for children to be engaged in the classroom. The process of creating and implementing activities often becomes a distraction from working with the children. How can school-age educators encourage children’s activity while creating opportunities for wonder, discovery, and self directed satisfying work?

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Boundaries

Boundaries

When immersed in play, children enjoy taking risks and challenging themselves physically and mentally. Children are always searching for the limit of their current potential and are motivated to push that potential to achieve a goal. Adults can learn a fresh perspective from children about risk and reward.

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The Collision of Work Life and Real Life

The Collision of Work Life and Real Life

Being an educator is hard work. Our days are busy and filled with learning, laughter, and an enormous amount of tasks. The work is all encompassing and keeps us at school for more hours than we would like to admit. Being an educator is a labor of love, but how can educators keep a balance between our work life and our other life outside of work?

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Making Choices in an Early Childhood Community

Making Choices in an Early Childhood Community

There are many options in our field about how to engage effectively with children. Different philosophies focus on different areas of interest with their pedagogical framework. Working with children is a complex practice with decisions that need to be made every day. What is an effective process for making choices?

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I'm a Believer

I'm a Believer

A believer in education is someone who empowers children, gives gentle advice, is a good listener, and a person who lets the children know they have someone who sees only good in them and is there for them under any circumstance.

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Playing for Balance

Playing for Balance

Outside physical activity balances the school day. It provides children an opportunity to recharge, refocus, and rejuvenate their body and mind in preparation for the next learning adventure. It creates a connection to the outside world that helps all of us stay in balance.

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Learning Together

Learning Together

Learning together is the work that we do as educators, to hold space for children as they construct knowledge in their own way, at their own pace. Learning together is shaped by the image of the child you hold. 

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Understanding Early Childhood Vulnerability

Understanding Early Childhood Vulnerability

Engaging in the work of early childhood is to experience emotional vulnerability. We need to understand both the forces in our own classrooms and programs, as well as the larger forces of societal constructs to be able to formulate a response and start to build structures that strengthen us emotionally to work with children.

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