Comments for Investigating Choice Time: Inquiry, Exploration, and Play http://investigatingchoicetime.com by: Renée Dinnerstein Mon, 14 Jul 2014 23:13:23 +0000 hourly 1 Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Herb Bleich http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118725 Mon, 14 Jul 2014 23:13:23 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118725 Domain 1 (of the Pre-k Foundation for the Common Core):
“ENGAGEMENT–
1.) Actively and confidently engages in play as a means of exploration and learning.”
(followed by descriptors ‘a’ thru ‘f’ of mature aspects of play.)

Of course, the above is one-size-fits-all, just as the all-too-numerous content standards that follow. However, it did give me cover to tell the new principal that we are supposed to play in pre-k. Additional references to play appear in a few of the content standards, such as:

“Uses existing objects to represent desired or imagined objects in play or other purposeful way (e.g., plastic banana for a telephone).” Or, “Sustains interactions by cooperatively helping, and suggesting new ideas for play.”

Perhaps it’s the ultimate insult to try to standardize the development of play behaviors, but under the circumstances, I felt much better having them included.

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Renee http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118692 Sun, 13 Jul 2014 12:54:38 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118692 Herb, your school lost a treasure when you retired! I’m curious to know which of the pre-k standards seem appropriate to you?

As always, with warm wishes,
Renee

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Herb Bleich http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118676 Sat, 12 Jul 2014 18:32:27 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118676 Renee, your article on standards is a joy to read! As aways, you clarify the issues quite well, and I couldn’t agree more.

Ironically, I was able to put the pre-k standards to a bit of (mischievous) good use a year ago, during my final year teaching pre-k. A new principal had taken the helm, with experience limited to middle school. At one point she railed about my play-based curriculum, stating that the children would never measure up to the Common Core. I responded that the pre-k standards include quality, child-directed play, and luckily was able to hold the line. (The new pre-k teacher has unfortunately not fared as well under the pressure.)

I find it ironic that the pre-k standards, which do focus primarily on inappropriate one-size-fits-all expectations, promote some good early-childhood practice as well. It appears that knowledgeable people were tapped for at least part of the ignominious task.

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Renee http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118385 Sun, 29 Jun 2014 03:56:06 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118385 Thank you Kristi. There’s so much important “work” of childhood that young children miss out on when we push them into early, heavy-duty academics. The irony is that when they playfully explore a topic that really interests them, they do so much more “life-long learning” than when they do guided reading with a silly and uninspiring A,B,C, D and E level book.

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Kristi Mraz http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118379 Sun, 29 Jun 2014 02:41:17 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118379 Wow, Renee! Beautifully put! I have been thinking about this a lot as we wrapped our year in K- and after reading an article that shows no difference by age 11 if kids learned to read at 5 or 6- what are the standards really doing?! How can anyone defend five year olds being “below standard” when they are joyful, playful, inquiring, developing beings?! Thank you for always being an advocate of play and joy!

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Renee http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118252 Mon, 23 Jun 2014 16:09:06 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118252 Thank you. I will join and I hope other parents and teachers who are readers of my blog will join too!

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Teri Sasseville http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118249 Mon, 23 Jun 2014 14:14:25 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118249 This facebook group is exploring the issues raised in this article and seeking to inform parents about developmentally inappropriate Common Core standards’ demands on their young chldren. Please join us!
https://www.facebook.com/groups/545464045566472/

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Megan http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118238 Mon, 23 Jun 2014 02:31:12 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118238 Renee, I am so glad you wrote about this – you read my mind as well. I have tried to raise this issue at our daughters’ school for a few years, with not so much response. The crazy thing is that the parent-teacher conference you describe is now sometimes reversed, with me as the parent trying to respond (in a sensitive way and yes, without telling the teacher how to do her job) when my daughter’s kindergarten teacher raised concerns about wanting to stop my then 4-year old’s letter reversals from “becoming a pattern”. I think that our administrators know better, but wonder what is happening with some of the teachers. Is developmental psychology being emphasized less in ed schools, or is this a response to pressures brought on by the new standards? I wonder if perhaps like-minded parents and teachers can work together to highlight what’s being asked of kids today that’s not developmentally appropriate.

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Renee http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118232 Sun, 22 Jun 2014 18:38:03 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118232 Anna

I am speechless. Have you spoken with other parents? Perhaps there needs to be a parent-revolution! I saw something like this at
a school were I was doing some consulting. The teachers were putting together the most inappropriate “summer packet” for the incoming kindergarten children. I flipped! I certainly gave my input and gave some other suggestions for a kindergarten packet. Unfortunately I never followed through to see what happened. I’m going to write to one of the k teachers now to see what they are doing.
So sad to have to deal with this – the children, the teachers and the parents. We do need some kind of revolution, don’t we?

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Comment on RETHINKING THE EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS by Anna Jaross http://investigatingchoicetime.com/2014/06/rethinking-the-early-childhood-common-core-learning-standards/#comment-118230 Sun, 22 Jun 2014 17:32:16 +0000 http://investigatingchoicetime.com/?p=1204#comment-118230 Renee,
You’ve read my mind. I’ve been itching to write my own blog post about exactly this. I’m currently living this as my reality on two different fronts: as a teacher and a mother of a Pre-K child. As a teacher I’m shielding my first graders from ridiculous hoops that the CCSS is asking them to jump through. Yes, a few of them can do it, but at the expense of the majority who clearly aren’t ready? As a mother, I’ve been recently put in a tricky situation with my son’s preschool. A letter came home in March, listing kindergarten readiness skills, in which “kindergarten teachers expect your child to walk into kindergarten with.” First of all, which kindergarten teachers? The list consisted of some normal things, like sit and listen to a story, know colors, shapes, etc. The part that sent me into a frenzy was “Identify 26 upper/lower case letters, know all letter sounds from upper/lower case, read/identify 24 sight words.” The letter went on to state that “If you feel your child is not confident in any of these areas, you might want to consider not sending him/her to kindergarten in the fall.” Whaaaaat? Who came up with these benchmarks? Definitely NOT the kindergarten teachers I know! I stewed about this, worried that many parents were probably panicked that their children didn’t know letter sounds, (mine one of them) and would be (heaven forbid!) instigating a letter/sound bootcamp this summer! I carefully crafted a response to my son’s teacher, giving input as a former K teacher, etc. and hoping that I didn’t sound like a “know it all” because we’ve all had those types of parents who tell us how to do our jobs! His teacher’s response was “We’re aiming to the high end, because not all parents are sending their children to public school.” I was saddened that a fellow early childhood teacher was not recognizing that this type of “preparation” is panicking parents and robbing children of preschool years that should consist of block building and the dress up corner, regardless of where a parent sends a child to school. Instead they’re learning sight words. Well, a handful of them are learning sight words. You’re probably wondering why I’m not pulling my son from this school. Unfortunately, as a full-time working parent, there aren’t quality, developmentally appropriate, full-time options available where I live. Maybe I need to start my own. ;)

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