Apologies in advance for a blog post which some may find controversial but it’s something I feel passionately about.
It’s Sunday morning and I feel like crying, not because it’s Sunday and I’m back to work tomorrow (luckily I love my job not to feel like that) but because I’m about to do our weekly “planning” sheet “because we have to!”
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind doing some aspects of my job at home, in fact this afternoon I intend having a well planned raid on Poundland to garner some new resources for outside provision. I object because this type of planning drive me utterly round the twist. Who exactly is it for because I’ll tell you for certain it isn’t the children. We do this type of “tick box” planning every week and it’s rare that I’ll observe the children doing anything remotely related to it that I can get a firm observation for their profiles from. Currently I have a couple of my key children interested in dragons, another few have an interest in growing things and some more are fascinated with running – how am I supposed to crowbar that into our focused outcome for the week?
Does our Government think so little of our profession that they can’t trust us to raise the next generation without some sort of “safety net” in the form of a prescribed curriculum framework. Actually, while I think of it the word framework itself bring forth visions of a steel fence keeping everything in order. But shouldn’t the great and wonderful sector known as Early Learning and Childcare be in a delightful form of disorder? A chaotic maelstrom of wild ideas and wilder imaginations led by the great army of under fives with gentle guidance from adults.
I don’t know about anyone else (actually, that’s I lie I do know several people who would agree) but isn’t a curriculum just a way of forcing children to stop being children and put their own methods of learning and discovery, or as they like to call it “play”, to one side and learn the adult way. In fact, in adult learning it is acknowledged that there are different types of learners; those who can sit and absorb a book or a lecture and those who learn by doing (that’s me by the way!).
Anyway I’m off to go and tick the required boxes whilst dreaming up wonderful provocations for my little people that I know they will enjoy, play with and learn so much more from.
Now, where did I leave my dragon?