Confessions of a Teacher:
I feel like Elsa right now.
There is an expression that I have heard on more than one occasion since diving deep into the Reggio philosophy, become comfortable with the unknown. This is something I still struggle with as I feel like I should be "prepared" at all times with resources, knowledge, and understanding on just about everything. The truth is, I am trying my best to talk less and listen more to the children. I am realizing that I do not need to hold all the wisdom because the children are the ones to direct the learning, and I am just along for the ride to provide the provocations and resources to deepen their understanding, interests, and theories.
Since returning from Winter Break, I have been feeling this disequilibrium inside of me trying to understand which direction the children might be going. Each day, in the back of my head, I keep hearing Elsa singing, Into the Unknown.
One of the ideas that continues to resurface throughout the year is the idea of real vs. imaginative. Some of the questions and comments I have heard this year include...
Are fairies real? There is no way Santa is real! The gnome built that fort in the forest. Who would win the battle, Godzilla or King Kong? Mermaids are real! The kraken is real, we just can't see it because it is so far down in the ocean.
Below is a clip from the beginning of the year after group of children decided to build a fairy house for the hope that the fairies might visit. They discuss their reasons why they believe they were present and some, who shared their disbelief of fairies.
This idea of the world of the unknown is still present today in the classroom. Below are some pictures from two weeks ago of a small group of children spending a few days creating a campsite for the fairies.
During a morning meeting this past week, the children got on the topic of whether or not a kraken is real. To be honest, I had never heard of a "kraken" until the class shared with me this fall that it is a squid like creature that lives under the sea. There has been debate prior to this meeting about its existence. The idea of the kraken then sparked further conversation about the idea of mermaids and three headed sharks being a possible reality. The children debated this idea and reflected on each others' theories and thoughts.
We then invited the children to draw what they believe a kraken to look like. We paired the children up for there to be conversation and debate over the possible ideas of what a kraken may indeed look like, if they exist?
The following day, the children were paired up again to draw what they believe would be in the deepest part of the sea. Some drew the kraken while others drew what they knew for sure existed, including underwater volcanoes, submarines, and the Titanic.
I am not sure where these ideas of the magical and mythical will lead to....but I will be ready to travel into the unknown.
Some random facts about me...