In the next month, I will be doing two conference presentations. Because it takes me a long time to finish an original post, I will repost a few posts over the next few weeks that I wrote more than two years ago after another early childhood professional asked me the question: Why do I build? I revisit them because they will also help me prepare for the second conference, which is a keynote presentation for the 15th Annual Launching into Literacy and Math Conference in Madison, Wisconsin at Madison College(MATC Truax) on February 7th. This third repost emerges from discussions from a Reggio-inspired book study that examined how children create dialogue with and meaning from spaces they explore and inhabit.
Friday, September 21, 2012
This summer, I started to participate in a book study through the Reggio-Inspired Network of Minnesota. The book study used the Reggio publication entitled: dialogues with places. The book examines how the children use all their senses and their whole bodies to investigate space and reflects on how children subsequently make meaning of a place through those investigations. Because their investigations were always new and fresh, it was not unusual for them to pick up on features such as holes in the ceiling or cracks in the floor that adults simply ignore. For the children, though, those were important features to animate. Those were important features that were "invitations" for the children to enter into a dialogue with the place and to ultimately create meaning.
For me, the sensory table is such a place. It is a place in which children enter into a dialogue with the apparatus. It is a place in which children find those "cracks" and "holes" from which they ultimately create meaning. It is a place in which they use all their senses and their whole body to investigate.