Wednesday, February 23, 2011

How do I define Common Sense?

I feel using commonsense in my work as a child care professional, means using what fits for myself, and my children. I firmly believe from my own experience (and I have also read this), that when I sit on the floor with my children that their stress level goes down. So when comforting a frightened or upset child I generally sit down on the floor and hold the child. It has worked so many times, that I just always do this, and usually sit on the floor when playing with my kids, etc. as a matter of course.

I believe that if I use emergent curriculum and closely observe and listen to my children for cues as to what they are interested in, and then keep an open mind about how the children chose to use what I offer to them, that they will enjoy their play, and learn more readily.

I believe that if I engage my children in dialogue throughout the day in an honest, natural, give and take way, that it will increase trust, learning and also language development. I also feel that table manners are better, and are not an issue, if I engage my children in interesting conversation at meal times, about just about anything, colours, families, pets,plans, ...

I know that children thrive on outdoor play, so my commonsense tells me don't forget to be outside whenever possible.

In a way, commonsense is using what my senses observe and tell me about children and what works in the environment we have to work with.

Lately, in early childhood education, there is some talk of not having storytime or "circle", because it isn't right to take the children from their play and "require" them to participate.My common sense tells me that children love story time and songs, and that they will miss out if I don't make it part of their day's routine.I was always very flexible in my past 23 years with my story times, etc. allowing some children to walk around the outside of the circle if that was what the child needed to do, but I knew the child was listening in his/her way. I feel that alot of language development happens at these times, as well as fun, and a learned heritage of story, song and rhymes that may not get passed down if we let this go in favour of free play.I just believe that some routine is comforting, and stabilizing to children. As well sitting quietly and resting is an important skill to learn. Everyone should know how to quiet their body from time to time I believe. I am wondering if most other centers still have selected times for listening, story and song?

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