I just learned about this blog on Sand and Water Tables by Tom Bedard. I thought that from time to time I’ve had cool ideas for the sensory table. I was so wrong. This guy? This guy takes the sensory table as a mere suggestion, and takes it to a whole new level (often literally). Teachers: you’ve got to check this out.
From Mrs. Meyers’ Kindergarten, a fine example of the power of natural materials and loose parts, how fascinating art can be when there’s no “cookie cutter,” and how you can subtly guide children toward critical thinking, reflection, and planning.
A provocative article in the New York Times about the importance of play, and (in part) how it relates to creative problem solving and scientific thinking. “Such low-probability hypotheses often fail. But children, like adventurous scientists in a lab, will try these wild ideas anyway, because even if they fail, they often produce interesting results … Alas, Dr. Gopnik said, this trait peaks around 4 or 5. After that, we gradually take less interest in seeing what happens and more in getting it right.” But then the article ends, leaving off what (to me) is the crucial question: How do we encourage this creative thinking in a way that sticks around after preschool?
An intriguing post by Janet Lansbury on “sportscasting“—essentially, narrating what’s going on for children, even when they’re upset or struggling. I don’t agree with everything she says here, but it is a technique that I use often… Also, some useful thoughts on sharing, with regard to infants and toddlers.
And finally, parents, are you feeling discouraged? Read this, by The Actual Pastor, and feel a little better.
Have a good weekend—I hope your weather is as good as it’s supposed to be here in Philly…