Interesting article I came by today... what do you all think? Do you think we push schooling on our children too early by sending them to preschool and pre-K?
Why did we ever feel we had to push the kindergarten curriculum down one or two or three years? If anything, we need to give children more time to grow and develop physically, socially, emotionally and mentally in natural ways. As a kindergarten teacher, I realized that many of the problems I saw were results of children being made to perform academic tasks too early. Their minds and bodies were not ready. Teaching skills too early can have detrimental effects because the child's brain is not developmentally ready to process these abstractions. When we work in harmony with brain growth, we are willing to give time and experiences the priority.
What has happened to childhood? The best preparation for kindergarten is a happy and fulfilling childhood. Childhood should be filled with days of playing, imagining, enjoying the company of loved ones who provide security and enjoying the natural world... sunshine, fresh air, rainbows, plants, animals, rocks, sand... and all other abundant resources. We know that one of the best measures of success in education is being in a loving home with parents. Let's start treasuring and encouraging this way of life as preparation for school. In our Head Start and Pre-K programs, let's simulate a secure, loving home environment where children can partake of the tremendous benefits. Let's rename these programs "Living a Happy Childhood."