Topics in Early Childhood Education

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Healthy Kids Learn More!

It is a known fact that healthy children are able to be better learners in a classroom setting. Recently, an Ultra Healthy Blog titled, “Top 50 Early Childhood Health Blogs" named the 50 top early childhood health blogs. Although my blog was named as part of the list, there are some great resources for helping to keep young children healthy.
Childhood obesity is certainly an epidemic in our country. I think my biggest frustration with this epidemic are the factors that we can do something about, such as outdoor play at school. Schools that limit or cancel outdoor play with the excuse of needing more learning time are not doing anything to help student learning. I think some schools just don't want to deal with any problems that may occur on the playground. To my way of thinking, they are sacrificing the health of the children in their care. I'm still waiting to see documented research that says cancelling recess increases student learning. I think I will be waiting a long time. All the while, young children are getting more sedentary. I think a better idea is to give teachers resources to help children stay healthy.


Monday, February 01, 2010

Being Kids

I sometimes worry that children in this century are not allowed to really be kids. They are constantly surrounded by adult commentary and much of the television programing contains adult humor. We all laugh when a child on TV says something sarcastic or profound. Statements that in the real world usually don't occur. A college student mentioned to me recently how much she enjoyed the movie Kindergarten Cop when she was a child. I remember that movie well as I was a male kindergarten teacher at the time. The movie was funny and entertaining, but I was dismayed by the fact that most of the things the kindergartners said in that movie would not even occur to a five year-old. Again, adult humor masked as child humor.
I was observing a student teacher working in a first grade classroom the other day. She was reading a joke book (the children's choice) for a few minutes prior to leaving for the day. She told the following joke:
"Knock, Knock."
"Who's there?"
"Mississippi Who?"
"She's married to Mr. Sippi!"
The children laughed and laughed at the joke. A simple joke for a child's humor. I love to see children who are able to be children. I wish everyone could have a lengthy and humorous childhood. Maybe adulthood would be a happier experience, as well.
My second grade grandson loves jokes. I think I will go call him and tell him my latest.....