I want to share with you our discussion in this week’s blog, and reflect on just how valuable it is to listen to children’s ideas, allow them to express their theories, and give them the space and tools they need to test these theories out for themselves. It is so important to allow this process to happen, instead of just telling children information and expecting them to absorb it. During our morning discussion, I learned so much about the children in the group and how they think and feel. It made me excited to see how they were incorporating information from so many different experiences to have a lively discussion about our topic: snails!
Amy truly is a gifted educator; she views education as a dynamic interplay among teachers, students, and parents. She is always challenging herself to learn and grow, and I can't wait to learn from her and grow with her myself! As your forest kindergarten teachers, Amy and I are excited to get to know you and co-create AFK with each of you.
At the same time, a conversation about the need for more preschools with progressive educational models had been brewing (“blooming” you could say!) on a Facebook group for local parents. As synchronicity would have it, these conversations coincided with dreamy fascination in my social circle about nature-based preschools, forest kindergartens, and unstructured education in general. I realized quickly that my background in education and nonprofit organizations were about to unite in a way that I had never previously imagined. I was going to start a school!