Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Higher Education

Okay Friends,

I have worked in Early Childhood for the last nineteen years and finally decided to channel down another avenue. What do I mean by this you say, well I have decided to teach Early Childhood classes at my local community college. It has been about three months know and I am having a blast! I currently only teach two classes part time, but the joy of being able to give back to the students the knowleldge and skills I aquired over the years has just been a blessing.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Teacher Child Interactions

I have worked with children for the last eighteen years and have learned how important it was to provide excellent teacher child interactions. Many have shared that children who receive good teacher child interactions develop high social skills, lower symptoms of anxiety, depression and social withdrawal just to name a few. It has also been shared that high conflict teacher-child relationships have been linked with lower social skills in the areas of responsibility, cooperation, self-control and assertion.

Throughout my eighteen years of service with-in this field I thought this was something that all teachers realized was important. However working as a manager for the last thirteen years I have found out that this is an area that many overlook and do not make the connection to behavior and learning delay. This problem has been identified as such a road block that the office of Head Start has developed a tool to support “Teacher Child Interaction” which is called “CLASS”. You might be asking what dose "CLASS" mean. Well it means Classroom Assessment Scoring System.

This is a new tool that is being rolled out and that is currently big in the Head Start programs where teachers are being analyzed on their level of teacher child interaction. The content of “CLASS” was a shocker. When I first heard the word I thought it was something new that was being introduced but come to find out it was something that all Teachers regardless of  grade level should have been doing on a daily bases.

Utilizing this tool with-in the classroom showed a great concern because you realize that many teachers struggle with having on-going meaningful conversation with children. Teachers are missing the importance of asking open ended questions which strengthen language development and build knowledge awareness. Asking children questions where they are only able to provide a yes and no answer limits their language skills. Children need to be engaged so that their little minds are challenged to produce all knowledge retained.  

Obviously teachers are going to need ongoing support to develop skills and knowledge behind offering strong “Teacher Child Interactions”. Until next time I will like to say engage with your students in the most meaningful way and offer enough time to hear what they have to say.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

How Benificial are Printable/Ditto's for Preschoolers

Printable/ditto’s is a tool used widely in public schools. Over the years much pressure has been put on preschool to help support kindergarten readiness. With this pressure many teachers have resorted to printable to help develop skills such as fine motor development, name writing, and letter recognition just to name a few. Even though printable is a tool that preschoolers should be exposed to, a parent/teacher should be very careful on the amount of time a child is sat completing such as sheet.

When a child is required to use printable/ditto’s their creative mind and expression slowly diminishes. When children are given an opportunity to complete a task from scratch they are more prone to learn and develop skills in a much faster pace. Children also develop additional skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, and self-esteem when encouraged to complete work using their own imagination and previous memory.

Please note that even though children are better off working using their own creative mind children do need the exposure to printable/ ditto’s. This exposure is important because when preschooler’s transition to kindergarten printable will be much of what they will work from, so offering the exposure will help build the child’s comfort ability with the tool. However it is still important not to overindulge with tools such as this.

Teachers/parent should be aware that all of the skills needed for kindergarten readiness can be developed without the utilization of printable/ditto’s. This is why was created to show teachers/parents different ways a child can learn. Through independent activities a parent /teacher can educated their child with tools that is found right in their home and with-in their community.

The economy is hard and money is tight but that do not have to stop the process of educating a child the right way.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Preschool Teacher's Last Day Of School

Friday 6/3/11 was the last day of school for Head Start preschool teachers. Summer is a great time for teachers to relax and restore the energy that is highly necessary to keep up with such an energetic bunch. While out on break teachers can reflect on challenges they experienced for the year . They can then develop new and improve strategies and techniques that might support those barriers. Teachers who take this time to effectively plan will usually have a more productive year.

Some of the topics a teacher might ponder on are as follows:
.Classroom Management- how well were you able to manage you time to get necessary work done?
.Room Arrangements- how effective was your set-up to foster smooth transitions?
.Better strategies to help support positive discipline- were there days you wish you had a bag of tricks up your sleeve to deal with those on-going challenging behaviors?
.Effective and productive educational activities -how well do you feel you implemented activities that helped your students master skills to excel to the next level?