The first day of preschool can be as exciting as it is challenging for a young child. While they may not be able to articulate it clearly, children likely have thoughts, concerns and questions such as:
“Why aren't my parents staying with me?”
“Who will I play with?”
“What if my teacher doesn’t like me?’
“Look at all the toys! I don't have these toys at my house.”
“Why do I have to sit on this spot and wait for my turn. I don’t want to share these blocks!”
Not only does this new environment have an overwhelming amount of sensory stimulation but it also brings up the valuable concept that a child has "two different worlds." Ed Sheeran and the Sesame Street characters explain the differences between a child’s home and school world in their video “Two Different Worlds.” In a child’s home environment their belongings are theirs, they can move freely from room to room at their own leisure, and get all the attention their parents can provide.
As the lyrics state, “At home I can sit here and there, in the couch, my bed, or easy chair” and “speak whenever I please, I can talk real loud and shoot the breeze.” However, at school toys are to be shared, rules are to be followed and teachers must divide their attention between all the children in the class. The song describes the world at school: “At school I raise my hand in the air, when there’s something that I want to share,” and “In school I have a special place, It’s my desk, and that’s learning space.”
Since both the home and school environments are important to a child’s development, how do we link the common and favorable traits that each provide? Let’s look at the following dimensions to illustrate how teachers and parents can use CLASS principles to ease the transition between these “two different worlds.”
Ed Sheeran's song “Two Different Worlds” punctuates the importance of the two worlds and that “both worlds are awesome” With knowledge and intentionality teachers and parents can work together using the CLASS dimensions to ensure that each half of of a child’s world is symbiotic and supportive.
Exciting news! Teacher materials are now available in Spanish for Infant/Toddler and Pre-K CLASS Group Coaching. Both videos below discuss what is included, when cohorts can begin, and the process behind preparing and translating these materials. The first video is in English and features Campbell Buie and Richard Aguilar. The second video is in Spanish and features Sofia Rodriguez and Richard Aguilar.
So, it’s June and you have just wrapped up the year with your students. They have made tremendous progress over the course of the year. The routine of the day flows naturally, the expectations about what is and isn’t appropriate behavior is fairly clear to all of them (and to you), and you leave the school year feeling confident that they are ready for the new challenges that lie ahead. You go into the summer months looking forward to a much needed break, but also looking forward to your new group of students in the fall.
As a Certified CLASS Affiliate Trainer, I enjoy reading the discussion posts and responses in the CLASS Learning Community. It gives me further insight into the areas that teachers have questions about, and the responses and techniques that members of the community are sharing with others. Usually I just sit back, read along, and take it all in.
Then recently someone posted, “I'd love some great examples of what Quality of Feedback looks like when you're working with less verbal children. For instance... creating an effective feedback loop off of what a child does more so than what he or she says.”