What’s the rush?

Children learn when they are left alone to explore their environment at their own pace. Downey Preschool believes in child-led, play-based learning, and for a good reason. What’s the rush? Check out the entirety of this lovely blog post at http://happinessishereblog.com/.

I won’t say ‘hurry up’, when you’ve stopped to smell the flowers.

I won’t rush you when you’re admiring the shape of the clouds.

I’ll let you lead me away to show me that interesting bug.

You’ll join in with what I’m doing, and we’ll go at your pace.

I’ll delight in the world, just like you do.

You’re learning, and I’m learning too.

This is important. This here is what life is really about. Thank you for showing me that.

from “Childhood: Why the Rush”

Preschoolers making the world a better place

Preschoolers ages 3-6 and an adult are invited to explore the superpowers they have to make the world a better place during “Super You: Make the World a Better Place — Preschool Philanthropy Workshop.” The Youth Philanthropy Initiative of Indiana will lead stories and activities. Participants will create their own super hero and identify how superpowers can help others. Classes are scheduled at various libraries September through December. For a list of locations, dates, and times, click here. This program is sponsored by PNC and The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation.

Upcoming events of interest

There are still some spots available for our next parent training workshop on July 24 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. at Downey Christian Church. The seminar will be a much more in-depth presentation with extensive take-home materials and an interactive discussion. We will talk about understanding where your child’s problem behaviors come from and how to decrease them, and how to look at the root causes of all problem behaviors. If you’ve ever dealt with a tantrum, struggled at bedtime, or found yourself in a power struggle at mealtimes or during morning routines, this is the workshop for you! The cost is $15 per participant. Childcare and snacks will be provided,
You can register here: http://www.centralitybehavior.com/workshop-registration.html

This Sunday, July 13 from 12-3 p.m., Downey will have a booth at the Irvington Farmer’s Market in Ellenberger Park. Come visit the booth and invite others with preschool-age children to come. We will have fun activities for the kids!

The next Downey playdate is Tuesday, July 15 from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. at Ellenberger Park (on the corner of St. Clair and Ritter).

Play-based versus academic school settings

This is a good jumping-off point for discussion of an important topic.

“The Case for the New Kindergarten: Challenging and Playful” by Daphna Bassok, Amy Claessens, and Mimi Engel

“Academic instruction in early-childhood classrooms is often framed as inherently at odds with “child-centered,” “developmentally appropriate,” or “play-based” practices. This presumed dichotomy—that preschool and kindergarten must either be geared toward play and socioemotional development or focused on rigorous academic instruction—is false.”

“Scientific American”: The Need for Pretend Play in Child Development

“Many people often think of play in the form of images of young children at recess engaging in games of tag, ball, using slides, swings, and physically exploring their environments. But physical play is not the only kind of play. We often use the terms pretend play or make-believe play (the acting out of stories which involve multiple perspectives and the playful manipulation of ideas and emotions), that reflect a critical feature of the child’s cognitive and social development. Over the last seventy-five years a number of theorists and researchers have identified the values of such imaginative play as a vital component to the normal development of a child.”

Click on the paragraph above to keep reading.