This past week I have been reading "Teacher Tom's" blog. He is a preschool teacher in Seattle with a great approach to his teaching methods. He let's this children do almost everything on their own. The kids do not do much inside, except maybe on a rainy day. Everything they do is outside on their new outdoor playground. In Teacher Tom's first blog that I read, motivation, sociability, and the ability to work with others, the children are adding an addition to their outdoor playground. They are building a waterway with half pipes that leads from the top of a hill with a mini cast iron pump to the bottom of the hill. The children take on different roles and all work together to build it without any teachers help. To me, this is amazing. This just shows that if you let children's imaginations run free, they can do anything. They are so much more creative than most adults and they have unique ways of doing things just like this. While pictures with captions were being shown of the children who were making this, Teacher Tom was telling about a study a few years back in the Perry School, which was a preschool. The students who attended this preschool were said to have higher IQ's at first but then they dramatically dropped. They were continuously tracked throughout their life and the study showed that although they had a lower IQ score than originally, they showed to have less behavioral problems, greater academic achievement, and they were less likely to be assigned to special education classes.
Since I plan on working with younger kids, these blogs really interested me. I couldn't stop reading them! I read A LOT of them, so, I am going to pick just one more to talk about, which is his most recent one, evidence you've been somewhere. In this, Teacher Tom is showing pictures of the students and their secret hideout. It is tucked away up a steep slope behind some trees in their outdoor playground. The children go here to imagine with their friends. To create stories and games where adults can't intervene. The blog is called "evidence you've been somewhere" because in order to get down from the hideout, its hard to not slide down on your bottom resulting in dirt stains on you-- evidence. Teacher Tom is great at what he does. I think it takes a courageous person to let a bunch of preschoolers run around and do all of this. He doesn't try to stop them, he only motivates them to imagine more, in return making them think about real life scenarios. How to build things, how to make things work, and most of all how to have fun while doing it.