All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sand pile at school.
These are the things I learned:
- Share everything.
- Play fair.
- Don’t hit people.
- Put things back where you found them.
- Clean up your own mess.
- Don’t take things that aren’t yours.
- Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.
- Wash your hands before you eat.
- Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
- Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
- Take a nap every afternoon.
- When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together.
- Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: the roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
- Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup – they all die. So do we.
- And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned – the biggest word of all – LOOK.Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation. Ecology and politics and equality and sane living.Take any one of those items and extrapolate it into sophisticated adult terms and apply it to your family life or your work or government or your world and it holds true and clear and firm. Think what a better world it would be if we all – the whole world – had cookies and milk at about 3 o’clock in the afternoon and then lay down with our blankies for a nap. Or if all governments had as a basic policy to always put things back where they found them and to clean up their own mess.
And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out in the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.
Having looked at this poem again through the lens of LEARNING and our work around the Conditions for Learning, I am even more certain that the Early Years are leading the way in teaching us about how deep learning occurs. For the next several weeks, let’s spotlight, analyze and engage in some discourse around some of the key concepts in the Early Years work, what they mean, and how they actually apply to ALL learning!
1. Our Image of the Child…as capable, competent, curious and capable of complex thought (Mindset).
2. Purposeful Play and Inquiry as a form of Play (Collaboration, Responsive Instruction) and Authentically Wondering (Risk Taking, Responsive Instruction) from K-3…and beyond!!!
3. Self-Regulation (Collaboration)
4. Growth Mindset
5. Pedagogical Documentation (Responsive Instruction)
6. Learning About Communication, Reading,Writing and Oral Language…and Learning to Communicate through Reading, Writing, Oral Language (Responsive Instruction)
7. Positive School Climate and Sense of Belonging (Relationships, Risk Taking, Collaboration, Responsive Instruction)
8. The Importance of Transitions and Partnerships (Relationships)
9. Parental Engagement (Relationships, Collaboration)
All I Really Need to Know About Learning, I Learned in the Early Years…
What are you learning about learning by visiting your Kindergarten classrooms? And how are you seeing this beyond the Kindergarten classrooms?
Until next week…