Establishing kinder- gartens of learning. Dissolving fear and fostering serious fun and freedom...making effective choices in Full Day Kindergarten
Choice TheoryThe Perfect Marriage with FDK ( Full Day Kindergarten) 1- The new FDK ( Full Day Kindergarten) curriculum 2- Logistics/ classroom management 3- Creating a healthy dynamic partnership between the two educators leading each classroom.
http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/literacynumeracy/inspire/research/CBS_StudentInquiry.pdfhttp://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/literacynumeracy/inspire/research/CBS_StudentInquiry.pdf • Here is an excerpt taken from our government site- referencing research. • I have highlighted a number of key words, phrases concepts: • Getting Started with Student Inquiry • There is growing consensus, both provincially and internationally, that greater student • engagement leads to greater student achievement (Cummins, et al.,2005; Flessa • et al., 2010; Leithwood, McAdie, Bascia, & Rodrigue, 2006; Willms, Friesen, & Milton, • 2009). While engaged students may appreciate extrinsic rewards such as good grades • or praise, their motivation is not dependent on them. They are engaged in learning • because they find it interesting, enjoyable and self-fulfilling. Intellectually engaged • learners stay on task, view errors as learning opportunities and persist in their efforts • to overcome challenges. They are passionate about and committed to solving problems, • developing understanding and moving their thinking forward (Jang, Reeve & • Deci, 2010; NCREL online). • Research suggests that students are more likely to develop as engaged, self-directed • learners in inquiry-based classrooms (Jang, Reeve & Deci, 2010; NCREL online). In • other words, “whether students use self-regulating tactics in school, what kinds of • strategies they use, how they are rewarded for their use, and how much effort • they expend being regulated and strategic, depends on the tasks and contexts • that teachers create for students” (Paris & Paris, 2001, p. 93).
We aim to probe our students, and as Karyn Callaghan, Program Coordinator at Charles Sturt University urges us, to be provocateurs as educators. • ( Further reflections on this evolution of the inquiry based approach to teaching learning can be viewed through a video clip with professors at Charles SturtRandaKhattar and Karyn Callaghan – although this is a promotional clip for the teacher/ece degrees offered at Charles Sturt University in Burlington Ontario – it provides a wonderful overview of the transformations happening in the Ontario education system. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7SLST-aj3eI)
1- Honour the past and traditional methods in small increments- in other words don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. 2- Structure large amounts of time devoted to allowing children to explore and discover on their own and with coaching.
Still Lost? A Long Range Compass We call it a compass as it is not as formal and rigid as traditional long range plans. It is meant as a guide and pacer for us in order that we honour critical timelines and expectations, however, it is to be flexible and a living document that will require adjustments as we differentiate our instruction based on our students.
Emergent - Designated minimum 45 minute periods to self discovery – preferably two of these periods or one hour and half period ( honouring the child’s intuitive sense of satisfying their needs and interests are directed by the student while the educators in the room ask questions, offer suggestions and provide physical support in planning, creating, building or taking an idea to further discovery or representation. Traditional • circle time • table work time • small group instruction • Small and large group activities /games lead by the educator in the room (however, at the end of our two year cycle our morning circles are lead by two children chosen as leaders • 5- 10 minute Working Power Bursts of reading, writing drawing, speaking, fine motor skills (scissor use, play dough, gluing) and word study
Curriculum Front door – traditional subjects • Language – Monthly Literacy Themes • Math and Science – Simple Experiments usually linked to either the literacy theme or letter/word recognition and printing/drawing of observations with a major emphasis on adding detail.
Back door – integrated subjects • Purposeful Play- multi modality centres- sprung from a student created play play What toy are you planning on using? Who are you going to ask to play? What might you want to create and how?
Note re: Play Plans or Observations We offer a quick modelled and shared example on the smart board. Once they are completed, for children who are at the scribble stage we scribe on the page what they plan to accomplish.
Or in the case of our sewing business Sew Family 220, which started 2 years ago with Eva Leigh’s story and dress
…to Midian and Aya…. ...to making purses for Mother’s Day ( need to add pictures) and ending the year with the June Jamboree which started with a fashion show parade ( need to add pictures)... To making a new police uniform for Officer Clarke
Then developing the idea of selling our things with a business and raising money for social action projects such as the Philippine typhoon
… To establishing Sew Family 220, ... to our class being sponsored by The learning Partnership- Venture Cafe, a national charitable organization dedicated to advancing public education and developing and strengthening the relationships between business and education
...to setting a page on Etsy where we sold our items and running a store during a nutrition break resulting in us making approximately $150. … to our front page coverage on the Hamilton Spectator and full page 8 ( show the paper) … To also having the following video done by Cathie Coward Click here: www.thespec.com/video/4478175/ These all from following the children, fanning their interests, provoking them further!
Suzanne Kranzelaborates in her Choice Theory Booklet Who’s Driving Your Car – teen edition: Why is it important to know about needs? Because your needs profile determines what you want, how you would like things to be, and that motivates you to act.
Moreover, a primary question posed by Dr. Glasser was : Can anyone control our minds and can we control the minds of others? Ultimately the answer is no. This is reinforced and highlighted by Victor Frankl “We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms -- to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way.” ― Viktor E. Frankl
Challenge 3– 5 minutes • You have each being given a post-it and a marker. Identify your dominate hand. Now with the dominate hand snap your fingers five times quickly. Now with your dominate hand place the post-it on your forehead and on the post-it draw a capital E. Take the post – it off and examine the direction of the E. Did is it backwards ( which would mean you wrote so you could read it) or is it in the proper direction ( which means you wrote it on your forehead so that the person looking at you could read it). • I will not show this clip right now but urge you to take a look at his experiment.. • Dan Pink in his book To Sell is Human, refers to this experiment. During a presentation for Behind the Brand, he reproduces a social science experiment with three participants, sit back and watch. 34:23 – 39:00 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nKrBitIQrgo
Might teachers be feeling a great sense of power hence they are not really listening to their students and truly taking an inquiry approach to learning? Also, if we are self aware and have assessed our levels on the Dr. Glassers needs profile, are those of us ( I hate to admit, probably 90 percent of all teachers) using this lack of attunement to reinforce and insulate one’s need for power?
The struggle is to differentiate the instruction to meet the varied needs, honour student choice, self regulation and self discovery within a cooperative community, the catch is most of the students can’t articulate their needs and they have limited experience in sharing and cooperating in a large group setting. Not an easy task – it is like herding cats! Which can seem impossible.
At the beginning of the year Brandon and I kind of impose a wee bit of our agenda, not quite a structured as this:
Class rules 1- Speak and act respectfully ( which means we use kind words, listen, keep our hands and feet to ourselves, care for our classroom/school property and the property of other, correct problems) 2- Do our best at whatever we do. 3- Remember we like to have serious fun not coo coo fun ( this brings on the year long discussions about effective choices and ineffective choices – what do they look like)
WAIT • Walk away • Ask the person to stop ( an I message) • Ignore • Tell a teacher when all else fails
Time Out – if necessary • 30- Second Interventions…from Nancy Buck • Is what you are doing okay NOW? • What is your job now? • When will you be ready to start? • What can I do to help you so that you can…………………………? • What is the rule? • What are you supposed to be doing? • It looks like you have a problem. How could I help you solve it? • Do you want to figure out a better way? How can I help you? • Is what you are doing helping of hurting our lesson? • And Nancy Buck’s Magic Question… • What do you want that you are trying to get by __________________? • If we can find a way for you to get what you want and still obey the rule, are you willing to give it a try?
WHEN TO DO WHAT Developed by Diane Gossen DISCRETION Question: WHEN SHOULD I SAY “YES IF”? Answer: When there is a choice When the child is asking for permission and the teacher can use discretion. The “if” states a condition that is possible for the child. If you say “no”, state the reason. EXPECTATION Question: When should I ask “WHAT’S YOUR JOB HERE?” Answer: When talking about the child’s or teacher’s responsibility or job in the class. The teacher has already outlined this in the class. RULES Question: When should I ask “WHAT”S THE RULE? Can you do that?” Answer: When it’s a “discipline” situation. When the children know the rule or procedure. When a change is necessary now and the teacher needs the student to comply to the rule . FOCUSING Question: When should I ask “WHAT ARE YOU DOING?” Answer: When the child is unaware of what he/she is doing. If you need information or facts (DO NOT DO THIS TO BULLY THE CHILD!) Be prepared to give the facts as you see them, if the child doesn’t answer.
WANT Question: When should I ask “WHAT DO YOU WANT?” “What do you need?” Answer: When the child is upset and you don’t understand why. Another way to get the information is to say: “What do you want to be hearing?” “What so you want to be seeing?” “What is it that you are not getting that you are so upset about?” “Tell me and I will help you.” COMPLAINTS Question: When should I say “HOW WOULD YOU LIKE IT TO BE?” OR “How would you like to handle this?” Answer: When the child is complaining and telling you what he doesn’t want When the child is talking about what the other person is doing to him. BELIEFS Question: When should you say “WHAT DO WE BELIEVE?” Answer: When the Social Contact has been created with the class. WHO WILL YOU BE Question: When do we ask, ”IS THAT THE PERSON YOU WANT TO BE? Answer: When we have worked with the child/youth on overall direction questions (Strong, happy, responsible, successful) By Diane Gossen
Creating a Healthy Dynamic Partnership between the two educators- The Marriage of OCT and DECE
Ineffective Choices Disconnecting habitspush others away from us. (trying to control others’ behaviour) Criticizing, Blaming, Complaining, Nagging, Punishing, Rewarding to control, Threatening Effective Choices Connecting behaviours pull others toward us. (controlling own behaviour) Accepting, Trusting, Listening, Encouraging, Supporting, Respecting, Negotiating Differences
As Dr. Glasser, stated on page 211 of Choice Theory “ The basis of a choice theory relationship is to establish trust.” To take this a step further, when we look at Suzanne Kranz’s, Glasser endorsed booklet, Who’s Driving Your Car – teen edition, she refers to total behavior as follows: “We always behave in a way that we believe gives us the most effective control over our lives. Everything I do makes sense to me – even when it doesn’t make sense to anyone else – and it’s always my best attempt to get what I want.”
MORMindset of Optimistic Resolvefrom The Corporate Family by Mary Catherine Rolston Pushed to our limits, we have a choice to as Ellen Gelinas would state slip back into our default setting ( some of our disconnecting behaviour habits) or follow the path of optimism, love, and as Dr. Glasser states choose connecting behaviours.
We want to have serious fun not coo coo fun! We want to make effective choices! Common agree upon strategies which are child centred and compassionate. As Dr. Glasser would ask, “What do we want, what do we really want? And is what we are doing getting us there? 1- Agree on a simple (mission) statement, that can be posted in the room and serve as a reminder when the going gets tough. **Suggestion that it focus on celebrating and building of strengths
2- Choose your battles. Even better surrender, go the extra mile and offer that unconditional support and following Glasser’s 7 connecting habits. David Marcum and Steven Smith state in Egonomics – work with our strengths and ensure that they don’t flip into weaknesses, as such we end up maintaining our humility, curiosity and veracity ( water cooler honesty).
3- Keep the honeymoon going…Focus on loving the other more than getting loved. So try implementing the f word FORGIVE( you might have a hard time forgetting but none of us are perfect) 4- Communicate. Listen, share and as Marcum and Smith say have the courage to share with veracity ( water cooler honesty). 5- Support – Hang with similar minded people. …look for the good ….
6- Communicate and teach your parent community. Encouraging others to use choice theory and other strategies which result in effective decision making, connecting people and challenging people to take personal responsibility, so that their actions can be internally motivated by the heart…love. The love that will build and surrender ti trust not fear based actions.
So back to the nagging initial statement posed by Carol, my colleague, all actions are based on either love or fear. All actions are based out of trust (the ultimate manifestation of love) and fear. Dr. Glasser’s model builds trust and love. These are essential for Full Day Kindergarten rooms, to facilitate heightened levels of self awareness, self- regulation, compassion inquiry and MOR – a mindset of optimistic resolve. Kinder-gartens where students can have serious fun, not coo fun making effective choices in the learning quest!”