Saturday, November 14, 2009

Having Fun with Curriculum

I have been thinking about why I do what I do... I don't mean why am I a Family Daycare Provider, but why do I use the curriculum I do. I have a degree in Elementary Education, but have gravitated to Early Childhood Ed for as long as I can remember. So I guess I learned that I should have certain activities set up for the kids, why they should be exposed to certain things, etc... but I don't know. It still seems second nature to me that my kids should be able to play with play doh anytime they want (at the appropriate place, of course), have paint and crayons to experiment with, blocks of all sorts of shapes, sizes and textures, water to splash, logs to jump from, well you get it :)
I am finding out that not everyone thinks like that. Some providers don't want the mess, or the noise. It's not just in homes, I visited a preschool classroom where there was a sand table and the teacher laughed and said, "No, that's a book shelf!! Way to messy as a sensory table" Of course I decided that I would pursue the Daycare License instead of putting my son in that class. I wanted to provide for my children as well as others those experiences. So, each day I come up with activities that they can excel at. I follow a lot of different curriculum's, I love the blogs I read because there are so many wonderful people out there providing such unbelievable experiences for the kids in their care, that I get side tracked and have to do what they did :)
So I can't just follow 1 curriculum, I have to be flexible and be able to use whatever seems best at that moment.
As you can see below, we are really into blocks lately. Right now we are loving making ramps, towns, hills, and buildings for our Monster Trucks to go over, under, and through (at high speed and noise!!) I am glad I have a center based set up, this way they can move about the room and do what they feel their body is ready for that day.
We are also into reading. I have found some great emergent reader books that you can print from Hubbards Cupboard( that the kids really love. I put the sentences on sentence strips and in our pocket chart (Target $1...Yeah) and the kids use the pointer (lots & lots of fun with that) and read it whenever they want. We go over it each morning at circle time and they read with me and then by themselves. They are very simple and they memorize it quickly, but oh the looks on their faces the first time they "read" it on their own... PRICELESS!!!

My favorite picture.... We came in from the yard to find Shea with this trash can lid around her neck... We thought it was very funny and had a great time wondering what could have been in that trash can!! Lucky Shea!!

1 comment:

  1. It sounds like you follow the same curriculum -- what I usually call an "emergent curriculum." There's probably a formal definition of the term, but I try very hard to follow whatever curriculum comes out of the children's free play. I believe that people of all ages learn best when they're in charge of what they need to learn. It's not always easy because I can't put together a lesson plan more than a few days in advance. On the other hand, it's always fresh!