Instead what I got was a masterclass in children’s education and her impending first day at school got me thinking about how different are children and adults in how we learn?
Having worked in adult learning for 15 years I feel confident that I know many of the principles of how we learn and how to apply them in practise, but the approaches taken by my daughter’s new school weren’t ones I’d come across before. They are structured around three main approaches:
- I Can, You Can, Toucan
- Fish! Philosophy
Watch this video for a masterclass in why validation is important. It’s quite a long video but worth watching if you have the time, if not, you’ll get the general idea in the first couple of minutes.
I Can, You Can, Toucan
Based on the book of the same name, I Can, You Can, Toucan, focuses on celebrating how everyone is different and has something very special about them.
The book is about three best friends who all have a worry about being different. Giraffe feels he is too tall, Penguin wants to fly, and Toucan is embarrassed by his big yellow beak, but when they all work together they can achieve some amazing things!
I was a little confused when I saw that Molly was in class Guppy Fish, but all became clear when they started to explain the FISH! Philosphy. It’s very simple but I could see how it could be very effective as it has straightforward rules that can make a big difference to the school culture, it’s all about building a sense of community – have I heard that somewhere before!
• Together we can make our school great! Let’s BE THERE for each other by staying focused on what we’re doing and how we’re doing it.
• A kind gesture can MAKE THEIR DAY when we do things, big and small, to make them feel good.
• Good and bad things happen every day, but you can always CHOOSE YOUR ATTITUDE.
• We know learning is more fun when we throw ourselves into it, so let’s PLAY.
Ok, in reality what we’re trying to teach children when they first start school is probably more about developing them into confident, kind people who are keen to learn than meeting specific objectives.
But is that really so different from what we’re trying to achieve in any type of learning or education? Maybe by considering some of these ideas and how we can enthuse and motivate our learners, they’ll be more receptive to our beautifully crafted learning courses and subsequently they’ll have a greater impact!
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