“The wider the range of possibilities we offer children, the more intense will be their motivations and the richer their experiences. We must widen the range of topics and goals, the types of situations we offer and their degree of structure, the kinds and combinations of resources and materials, and the possible interactions with things, peers, and adults.” -Loris Malaguzzi
Children start their lives as beings of enormous potential and unlimited possibilities. By the time they begin their formal education, they have already begun to develop many of the skills that will be necessary for their continued success and well-being in life.
Curious and full of wonder, these little ones enter school and encounter...what? Kindergarten was once a time of extended play and guided exploration. Emphasis was placed on socialization, developing fine motor skills, and increasing attention span. A typical full-day program included imaginative play, group interaction, some sort of vigorous exercise, and a nap.
Today's kindergarten student has no time for naps. In New York State, grade-specific Performance Indicators spell out standards and competencies for even the youngest learners. With high stakes testing taking place at every grade level, school districts can't afford to wait until first grade to introduce literacy skills: most students leave Kindergarten with some reading and writing facility. In this highly structured continuum, there is little time for spontaneity or silliness.
Where is the space for exploring ? When is there time for possibilities?
"What this Picture is" by 顔なし