Before you teach a topic, always ask yourself: “Will this make my students fall in love with learning?” As preschool teachers, we shouldn’t obsess over repeating the calendar and weather every morning because this sends the wrong kind of messages to kids: Learning is routine. Learning is the same thing every day. Learning is repetition whether you know it or not.
Is that really the first impression we want kids to have of school? Routine, boring, repetition? No way! Kids should be coming to school excited and anticipating what they will learn next! And to do this, we need to show them the most fascinating footage in the world. If you wanted to impress an adult, what would you show them? Find those kinds of videos! Find the resources that will make your class say, “Wow! Cool!” when they learn something new.
You never get a second chance to make a first impression and preschool is a child’s first impression of school so we teachers better impress! You have the opportunity of a lifetime to give your students a GREAT first impression of school. So as teachers, we need to make the year as fun, exciting, and knowledge-packed to persuade our students that learning is an adventure and this, is just the beginning. In today’s episode, we discuss how to ditch the uninspiring routines and make every day a thrilling journey to capture imaginations and captivate minds. We will work together to create a classroom that leaves your students in love with school, inspired to learn, and excited to explore the world of knowledge ahead of them!
I’ll be honest, I worry that research, academics, and bureaucrats drive far too much of the education in this country, especially in the arena of early childhood education. Our focus should be on creating a lasting and positive impression of learning in these formative years! We should be developing and nurturing passionate, interested thinkers! Their first years of school should be focused almost entirely on developing a love for learning and creating the best first impression of school that we possibly can! Imagine how far that can take a child!
Unfortunately, most Big Program Curricula don’t aim to inspire (they barely instruct). The Curriculum my school provided was filled with cliché themes and barely challenged the students to learn the alphabet. There was no flash. There was no pop. There was no real substance. How were my students supposed to get excited and invested about learning with half the year dedicated to Seasons and Holidays? How were my students supposed to fall in love with learning moving at this pace with these units? Where was the excitement? Where was the adventure?
I can’t even remember my preschool years and I barely remember kindergarten. I don’t think this has anything to do with time lapse or my age; it has everything to do with the lacking rigor and fun. I realized: “If you want to be remembered, you have to teach something worth remembering.” And I needed our classroom to be remembered. I wanted our classroom to be a memory of positivity, self-esteem, and fun– a source for confidence and self-esteem when challenges arise in life. I wanted students to look back on all they accomplished in preschool and push through any obstacle, knowing that nothing can hold them back. I wanted our classroom to leave an impact that would inspire passions and last a lifetime. How could that happen if the classroom became a forgotten memory? It couldn’t.
So we made our classroom unforgettable.
On this episode, learn how to build a curriculum that will light up your students’ imaginations and keep that flame lit for years and years. Help your students find their passions and drive their own learning by making school the greatest place in the world. It is totally possible and you can do it.
Resources and People Mentioned in this Podcast:
- FREEBIE – Teach What You Love Video Checklist
- Time Lapse Video – Plants
- Time Lapse Video – Ocean Floor
- Personal cards at the end of the year
- Punk Rock Preschool Free Full-Year Curriculum
- Episode 004: 21st Century Standards for Success
Show Notes (w/times):
- 4:45 – Make learning an adventure
- 7:05 – Strategies to Inspire
- 16:11 – Teach What You Love Freebie
- 19:20 – Changes you can expect to see
Thank you so much for joining us this week! Do you have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!
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