Sitting Still Does Not Equal Learning. Book Study Expert Commentary for Chapters 11 and 12 (Week 8)

Published on: October 19, 2015

Filled Under: Beyond The Pages, Books, Guest Speakers

Views: 13948

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This week we are discussing Chapter 11: Why Does Sitting Still Equal Learning? and Chapter 12 In Defense of Active Learning. Deborah Stewart will provide insight and lead our discussion this week. Just joining us? Get all the book study details HERE.

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deborah stewart

“Who’s to say we have to sit down to learn?” Why can’t we lay on the floor on our tummies to learn?” When I read that statement in Rae Pica’s book, I had to nod my head and smile.

DS3

In my classroom of children, who are ages three to five, you can count on at least one child ending up on his or her tummy during our gathering time. As a young teacher, I would have immediately told the child to hop back up and sit on those pockets. Now that I am a much older and more seasoned teacher, I have come to realize that my students need to be able to change their sitting positions or stretch out those arms and legs so that they can stay better engaged in the entire process of what we are doing.

DS 1

My students not only have the need to move their bodies during morning gathering time but this need continues all through out the classroom day. We provide tables for standing, carpeted areas for getting down on the ground, and chairs for sitting. Our classroom environment and schedule is designed for active learning.

DS5

Rae Pica states “Movement is the young child’s preferred mode of learning.” I want to expand on that statement and say that it is through movement that young children develop and master new skills, understand and remember concepts, strengthen muscles, relieve and manage stress, interact with their peers, and find joy in the learning process.

DS2

If I can encourage you to leave this post with one thing, it would be to remember movement in your planning. It is so easy to overlook how important movement is in the early childhood classroom. While you are brainstorming your lesson plans ask yourself…

  • Do my plans consider the need for my students to move?
  • Does my environment invite my students to explore and learn in a variety of different physical positions?
  • How can I teach these concepts through action or how can the children build on these concepts through action?
  • Am I spending too much time asking or expecting my students to sit still? If yes, what can I change in my planning to use movement to help us all be successful?

Read more thoughts about “Tummy Time” on my blog by clicking here!

Deborah J. Stewart, MEd
Website: http://www.teachpreschool.org/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Teachpreschool
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Teach_Preschool

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Please share/retweet this post! Let us know that you’re participating in this study. We’d love to hear from you about your thoughts regarding Chapters 11 and 12  and about the commentary Deborah has provided. Your voice matters – participate in the dialogue and share your ideas! (Comment below) If you’ve chosen to blog about what you’ve read on your own site, link back and share your post with us here. Perhaps you have a burning question about something that you read in one of these chapters… we have a feature for that – Ask The Author! That’s right, Rae Pica will be available throughout this live study to answer your questions. #AskAuthor

What to read next: Chapter 17 In Defense of Authentic Learning and Chapter 18 Who Should Lead the Learning (10/26/15).

*If you’re a MN participant seeking training hours, please visit this link to access to requirements.

68 Responses to Sitting Still Does Not Equal Learning. Book Study Expert Commentary for Chapters 11 and 12 (Week 8)

  1. Rachel Calvert says:

    A comment not necessarily about the particular topic of these chapters, but one of my favorite parts of Rae’s book is how she presents a topic and shares a story to illustrate it – which then of course sparks all of the personal examples that I’ve had similar to hers. I think this technique is something we can all use as we are advocating to others about child development. If we can make a connection with something they have seen but haven’t necessarily thought about from a particular perspective, it really makes it something that can engage in and maybe care about more. Most people have experiences with children in some avenue in life, so being able to pull on those to connect child development to decision making would work!

    One thing that stuck out to me in Deborah’s commentary was this: “In my classroom of children, who are ages three to five, you can count on at least one child ending up on his or her tummy during our gathering time. As a young teacher, I would have immediately told the child to hop back up and sit on those pockets.” Thinking back to my undergraduate studies – we often created lesson plans in which we would conscientiously think about what pieces of development were being supported by the planned activities. But I feel that if I were to do these again now, I would include much more about how all of these domains are intertwined. My degree was not in early childhood education but many of my courses overlapped – I wonder if there should or could be more education about the importance of movement during the training of our educators. In this way this mind-body connection would be highlighted for our young teachers, not just something they learn through experience over the years.

  2. Rae Pica says:

    Thank you, Deborah, for your thoughts and all the wonderful illustrations!

    And, Rachel, thanks so much for making that point! Stories do indeed bring our points to life. Asking people to “remember when” also works quite well. For example, when I’m speaking to an audience about the fact that sitting increases fatigue, I often ask them if they’ve ever felt tired at the end of a day spent sitting in a meeting, at a conference, or on a plane. That one really resonates with them — as does asking them to recall their own childhood!

  3. Scott says:

    When someone says to me, “Why can’t those kids sit still?”, I usually respond, “Adults don’t sit still either. They’ve just learned how to move around without distracting others.” (Of course, if the situation allows that response.) Watch a group of adults sitting in a meeting or workshop. They shift in their chairs, cross and uncross their legs, lean over and whisper to someone else, stretch their arms or legs, and sometimes get up and walk to the back of the room. Sometimes I think adults don’t see that they do the same things as kids do.

    Now, that said, I think movement is a strong motivator for learning, an engaging way to learn new things, and a great way to make the learning stick (as Deborah said). Let’s keep moving!

  4. Candiece says:

    What do we do for them to prepare them for classes that will make them sit still?
    I always tell my kids as long as ____(insert expectation to allow them they should be listening and not distracting others) you can lie lay? Down.
    I also try to help kids speak up and say”I learn better this way.” But I really am concerned that we’re going to be encouraging behavior that the following teachers won’t like or understand.. They will be confused by the child’s “delay.”
    I don’t consider it a delay myself. I see it as an opportunity to teach self regulation and getting kids to have healthy bodies and minds ready to learn.

  5. Deborah says:

    Hi Candiece,
    For me, the focus is on understanding developmental readiness and meeting young children where they are rather than expecting them to be where they will one day be. There are times when I ask the children to sit up and give me their very best attention but I balance that with recognizing that “very best” at age 3 or 4 will look different that it does at age 5 or 6. Too often folks want to start at the end goal when the focus needs to be on the time and needs and skills leading towards the end goal.

  6. Candiece says:

    Good point. Thanks. I guess I do a mix of that too.. And we sometimes learn those postures while playing a game. To get certain kids to participate. I always try to make it clear and fun
    And I personally know that everyone develops differently.. I have just been told “these articles are great but most kids can sit still.” And “but the rest of the world expects them to.” And since I have aspergers.. I couldn’t figure out how to explain in the amount of time a conversation takes place. My brain is full of all of the research…I just didn’t know how to access it and communicate it.
    So thank you.

  7. Rae Pica says:

    That’s a wonderful response, Deborah! I’m sure I’ll be borrowing it! : )

    And, Scott, it’s so true that adults don’t sit still either. I find it impossible!

  8. Deborah says:

    “Most kids can sit still.” This is so true so please let me elaborate. When a young child leans in to take a closer look or scoots up to get a better view or lies down to listen more comfortably or even jumps up for joy – I do not tribute the movement to being a sign of poor behavior or a lack of self-discipline but rather, I view this as responsive behavior. The young child responds with his whole body to what excites, interests, engages him.

  9. Candiece says:

    Love it Deborah! thank you! That’s how I feel.. I just couldn’t find the words.

  10. Mike says:

    Thanks Deborah for starting the conversation and thanks to everyone who commented.

    Last night I was speaking to a group of men in early childhood education at UW Stout (they have a group that meets monthly with a dozen or so members). I asked them when — in the history of humankind– have 3 or 4 year olds been expected to sit. Kids haven’t changed. Just our expectations. Gill Connell has the best quick response in her book, A Moving Child Is a Learning Child (paraphrased here because I lent the book to someone else): If you want kids to learn to sit still, you have to let them not sit still first. Sitting Still is an advanced skill that requires well developed vestibular and propioceptive senses. Brain research also tells us that not moving shuts down parts of brain activity. “The recticular activating system (RAS) activates the muscles to move in order to wake up the thinking brain and bring it back on task. In other words fidgeting can help concentration” (This one is quoted from Connell’s book).

    Sitting still isn’t healthy for any of us. We should spend our time trying to move with the children in our care rather than trying to have them sit still with us.

  11. Rae Pica says:

    Mike, thanks for mentioning Gill’s book. Gill is a friend as well as a colleague and her work is wonderful. I have her book here in my office but had completely forgotten her words about sitting being an advanced skill! Now that you’ve reminded me, I have even more “ammunition” to use in my speeches. : )

    I love your last paragraph. Excellent point. Thank you!

  12. Jen Nagorski says:

    Just after reading these chapters and this post, I came across a “Standup Kids” video on my Facebook feed that fits perfectly with this (and last week’s) topic.

    Check out the very short video:
    https://www.facebook.com/NowThisNews/videos/927824177307707/

    There’s more great information about this initiative on their site as well:
    http://standupkids.org

    I know plenty of adults who work at desks using standing set-ups, and certainly: “Why not kids?” I especially like swinging footrest bar–it gives even more options for movement throughout the day.

  13. Mike says:

    Jen, thanks for the video.

    Rae, I met Gill a few weeks ago. We plan on meeting again at NAEYC (we’re both presenting on Friday). Her book and your new one are the books that are being passe around among our teachers.

    The other book that I recommend to everyone is a picture book by Nancy Carlson called Sit Still! about a boy who can’t sit still. In the end his family and teachers find “101 things to do not sitting still.” I am hoping to use a few of the illustrations in my book for my section on NOT sitting still.

  14. Ibikunle says:

    I love all the post. It really nice. I will try making my students learn in that way too.

  15. Sarah Fritsch says:

    I think I mentioned this before but my early childhood team is having a book study on Gills book. So much great information about the behaviors that are labeled as misbehavios are actually meeting physical and cognitive needs. I share The Kinetic Scale from her book with my families to help them understand how important moving is to a learning child.

  16. Sarah Fritsch says:

    Jen: thank you for the link to the video. Short and sweet and to the point:)
    Mike: thank you for reminding me about Nancy’s Sit Still! Great book:)
    I truly believe the more sources we have to back up the argument for moving is learning the more parents, teachers, and policy makers we can educate.

  17. Jane says:

    Jen, I really enjoyed the video my education was an early childhood but then my first job was teaching sixth-grade. I set up many learning centers for them, yet some of our time was still spent at their desks together in groups of four. They still had trouble sitting at a desk and would’ve loved the standing tables. I was sad to hear “We don’t have time for movement [play] anymore; we’re too busy working on academics [meeting standards; fill in the blank….”I hope we can make an impact on movement becoming the accepted mode of learning.

  18. Dianne says:

    These are all very good points presented in the comments. I enjoyed reading them. I especially like the idea of making learning more active rather than having children sit and listen to a teacher tell them things. Making learning fun and interesting for the kids really makes a difference in how much of the knowledge they retain. I know from my own experience that the things I remember most are the hands on learning activities.

    I also agree that adults can’t sit still either. I would have a very difficult time sitting through an entire day of school.

  19. Kim Woehl says:

    These chapters are absolutely shouting what we already know and yet it seems no one is listening. Many children can comply and still learn, but for some children, whose need to move is especially strong, will fail in the typical system. These children are labeled as naughty, as having behavior challenges and they cause their teachers to struggle with everyone while at the same time taking time away from the group.

    “research shows that the more senses used in the learning process the higher the percentage of retentions”.

    “we have research demonstrating that sitting in a chair increases fatigue and reduces concentration”

    “we learn 80% of what we experience physically and sensorially but only 10% of what we read”

    If the educational system was on board with how children and adults learn we would see many more successes and I cannot help but to think how many more children would be thinking they were smart and successful (positive labels) instead of failing, being naughty, or incapable of learning. It isn’t the child who is broke, but rather the system.

  20. Heather Q says:

    http://hqtoddlers.blogspot.com/2016/05/week-eight-book-study-what-if-everybody.html

    I pride myself that I have a bunch of toddlers who will sit and listen to stories for almost a half an hour. Now I ask myself, is this a good or bad thing?

  21. Cindy Kish says:

    I also have my children sit down and have story time. I break my story time up by reading one book in the morning and one in the afternoon because the children do have to learn to sit still before they start school. I think being with the young ones ( 6 weeks to 6 years) has also helped me keep more on my toes. I enjoy it so much when they run up to you and tell you something or jump up because they are happy. A few weeks ago I read a story about nature at nighttime and on Monday one little boy came in the morning all excited because they went camping over the weekend and he got to see real fireflies. The father said they were so surprised to find out he even knew what they were.

    When children are between 1 and 3, look how much they learn, walking, running, climbing, talking, exploring, etc., but how often does a 1 to 3 year old sit down. I wish more people understood that all ages need to more to learn, just think of how little those 1 to 3 years old would learn if we made them stay in one spot for hours at a time.

  22. Diana M says:

    I haven’t been in the childcare field super long so not too long ago, I was pretty firm about sitting “crisscross applesauce” but i changed my perspective when I worked WG an older teacher who said frankly that she didn’t care how the kids sat during circle time as long as they weren’t running around the room or anything. And I think Scott makes an excellent point that adults can’t sit still for too long and have to move around a bit so it’s pretty ridiculous to expect young kids to sit perfectly still.

  23. Rachel D says:

    When gathering my kids during group time I try to be mindful of how long they have been sitting. When I start to notice some kids are starting to lose focus or become disengaged I try to get up and get moving. Even mixing it up and having the kids lay down on their stomachs. I sometimes as an adult forget how much we have gotten use to sitting in order to learn. Classrooms throughout schooling, trainings for work, and so forth. I think we need to start changing how one learns and start being okay with the fact that we as adults, just like kids need to be able to move.

  24. Samantha Miller says:

    I continually try to improve in my teaching with active learning. Although it has taken time, it is very effective. Children learn way more when they are moving or seeing and touching things then sitting and listening. As educators who know child development we need to advocate for the children. We need to educate parents and curriculum makers as to what we know about child development. Forcing children to sit when we as adults need to move is not fair for the children. We need to advocate for them!

  25. Rae Pica says:

    Samantha, just want to let you know how happy your comment made me!

  26. Freda says:

    Prolonged sitting while learning is bad and kids tend to loose concentration after a while. I remember back then when I was in college, most students play on their phone or draw imaginary images on their sheet/desk just to pass time while lectures went on. There should be a time in between where children can get up and walk around or bathroom break as another professor I had then called it. This helps tremendously and should be practiced in a school setting. Movement is as important as sitting to learn. Time should be set aside to allow children move around and not have to follow a particular schedule or activity.

  27. Nikki Shapiro says:

    Active learning challenges us as adults to think outside the norm. I use chairs very seldom -they are for meals, and for a group “project”. But most of the time the children are allowed to move around and choose their activities. I observe some lay down and play, others bounce up and down while building their magnets or blocks structures. They love to paint at an easel with something new such as a flower or stick. And now that it is warmer, we often read a story outside under a tree, so the child can roll around, lay down, feel the grass or move as they please. I would love to see formal educators read outside or have art class outdoors. We have opportunities to allow for children to learn through moving if we can just step outside the box for a bit.

  28. Marcy Dragseth says:

    Reading these chapters brought me to realize how active learning is so important. It is a another way to have children connect thoughts to learning. It’s like hands on learning. Physical using your body to act out what you are learning makes so much sense.

    I am going to implement more hands on learning in my daycare setting. Acting out letters, numbers and their name. It will be interesting to see if the learning concept will be greater. Which I am almost positive will be the end result.

  29. Kirsten Barie says:

    Our preschool has a lot of active learning going on. We have set times during our half day program where children have the freedom to explore the different learning areas around the room. We also schedule large muscle activity daily (usually outside). There are a couple of short increments of time where we have the children sit for circle time or a story. This is to teach them how to act in a group setting and be respectful of others. The children are by no means expected to be perfectly still or be there for long periods of time.
    I found myself relating to chapter 11! I am fairly new to my director role and find myself doing work on my computer a lot. I am thinking that I need to ask about having my computer raised up at my desk so that I can stand and work at it. I am not used to sitting so much!

  30. Kelly North says:

    After reading theses chapters I am going to do more hands on learning in my daycare setting. I now understand that active learning is so important especially in the younger children. I really liked the story about the little boy and his spelling tests.

  31. Yi Ling (Ivy) Flanders says:

    In our classroom, we have many different centers open; we also rotate our learning materials and toys after a while. I like the idea of give students the opportunity to physically experience concepts. Learn through play and movements. I like to play the music with some academic learning concept and move with kids, they love it!

  32. Steph Kallinen says:

    These were great chapters for making me think about how I run things in my day care. It is so easy to get the ages I work with moving, it just takes a little planing. I am one that will get a little agitated when kids are flopping around when I am trying to read them stories and that is something that I will really work on from now on and try to be more understanding of their need to move and learn actively! I need to put more time into planning active learning activities!

  33. Kathryn says:

    I agree that when children are using more than just their eyes and ears in the learning process, the learning becomes more realistic for them. If you can engage all of a child’s senses in learning activities, the better off the child will be in remembering what you have taught to them. I think that standing desks and exercise balls to sit on are fantastic ways to get children physically active and engaged but still are learning. We need to get kids moving more throughout their school day.

  34. Samantha says:

    I have to be honest, during reading a book I asked the kids to sit still and listen. Well maybe they would listen better if they were on tummies or backs or standing. I would like to start using jumping or actions or dancing in my daycare while learning. I think it would be fun for me and the kids. It would keep us both active. I believe I could learn more about the kids too.

  35. Shari Ernst says:

    Movement IS necessary. If I see a small child not moving much then I wonder whats wrong with them. So many of us learn and remember things by actually doing them, trying things, seeing how something works. The song lyrics comes to my mind…”get up, get busy do it…I want to see you move your body”. Our kids are expected to sit and be quiet most of the day. It is hard on adults so I only imagine it’s worse for little kids who are busy and can’t sit still for long. I was surprised to read that sitting for more than 10 minutes at a time reduces awareness of physical and emotional sensations (p. 53). As well as having other prolonged health risks. I guess schools have a long way to go to ensure this happens. But making simple changed like noted in the book, exercise balls are a great alternative, then the wiggly kids can still move or wiggle on their ball and then the pay better attention therefore learning more. This small step can help the teacher by not having to remind a child to stay seated or sit still over and over again. I love the saying “when the bum is numb, the mind is dumb”. That made me laugh.
    Chapter 12 was great on active learning. I am and always have been a firm believer that kids learn better if they have a visual object they can touch, smell or explore. As said previously I personally learn better by getting my hands involved and trying things…You can tell me words for word what to do…but I will forget steps. I can only retain so much…just like our kids.

  36. Melissa D says:

    One of the aspects of my program that I love is that we try to shape our classrooms around the child…rather than trying to fit a child into our classroom mold. Adults (mostly!) have the self control to sit still for extended periods of time…children do not and should not be expected to do so when learning! I hate the comment “they will have to ______ when they get to kindergarten.” Absolutely, the expectations in kindergarten are different that in our center but the kids aren’t in kindergarten and we can expect them to act like they are! If the children need to lay on their tummies…great, if they need to leave group time…ok come back when you are ready…if they need to stand for a couple minutes at lunch…I understand.

  37. Karlee O says:

    I’ll never forget my “ahha!” moment when I realized kids don’t need to be sitting and looking at my book to hear what I’m saying. More importantly, when I’m trying to get all my children to sit I am losing the children who were interested and engaged. Now for my story time I gather all my children in one area of the room. The ones who are interested sit closer to me and usually sit more still and the ones who are disinterested or need more movement tend to move to the back of the area. I know they can all still hear me and will still be learning but the ones who need to move more can do so without bothering the ones who sit more intently. My storytime got much easier and more productive after that.

  38. Jill Baer says:

    Movement being the preferred way to learn for children is so powerful. Even adults are moving towards standing desks and some powered by treadmills. While that isn’t the same as experiencing a learning objectives it reinforces sitting all day isn’t good for anyone. Even small movements seems to be beneficial in my group. Rather than set out crayons for them, I ask them to go get one green, one red etc from a bin. They work on fine and large motor skills seeking, sorting, carrying and climbing back in their chairs to color. My own kids come home from school and the things they tell me about from their days surround their brain breaks or active learning. Again, in my opinion, it goes back to the focus being too strong on standardized tests rather than learning in the best way for all kids.

  39. Amy Carter says:

    As a daycare provider, I found chapter 11 very helpful. So good to keep in mind when planning activities for them. I liked the part that she brings up about even being an adult it can be hard to focus if sitting for too long. This is so true for me so of course it would also be true and magnified for a child. I also like the idea of just simply changing positions to being able to lay Day on their tummies for story time. So simple yet effective.

  40. Tasha Martin says:

    In my years of experience I have learned repetative behavior helps so much . Children learn by showing them how letting them try and fail and try and fail again. Just the same as any adult. They learn and you can see them light up when they have finally accomplished something after they have tried and failed so many times.
    When you allow them to sit down and ask questions as many as they need to understand. I as a parent am horrible at this, my children will ask can I help clean up can I help cook and instead of realizing this is what they need to help them grow and learn I turn them down because I am a single mom and work sometimes 11 hour days and am tired and just want to get it done and be done. I need to work on this or my children will never be ready for the real world!

  41. Arissa Kordell says:

    I think as adults we need to remember that we have a hard time sitting still for long periods of time. We are constantly shifting around in our chair, crossing our legs, or checking our phones. We do this without thinking and don’t realize that this is us not sitting still. Kids have an even harder time sitting still and concentrating on something when they are being forced to sit and look at something. In my daycare I try to remember that kids have a hard time concentrating long enough to finish a project or read a book or even watch a movie. It can be extremely frustrating during nap time when the kids are moving around and constantly making noise and waking other kids up. But honestly have you ever been laying in bed and can’t fall asleep. Your probably tossing and turning and moving your pillow and trying to get more comfortable. It’s the Same for the kids when they can’t fall asleep and they move and look around and then they get tempted to play with something or talk. It’s not that they want to interrupt nap time, they just can’t help it. When it comes to doing preschool activities I try to incorporate learning into our every day fun so that the kids don’t have to sit and get bored at the table. I love preschool songs. Instead of sitting at the table and talking about the letter “A” with kids that can’t focus we sing smake preschool song about the letter a. We dance and have fun. Or we do a craft that incorporates the learning rather then doing a worksheet where the kids get bored sitting.

  42. Laura says:

    I have learned that trying to make a group of toddlers sit down for a circle time when the teacher goes through the alphabet, numbers, colors, shapes, songs and a book is way too much to ask them to sit quietly and patiently. I have learned to mix up our circle time and only do a few things at a time so the children can get up and play and stretch in between circle time. There is so much learning for the young minds in stacking the blocks and sorting the shapes into the proper spot. I personally need to advocate more active learning into my program to benefit the children more

  43. Joni Helmeke says:

    First off, I really liked the title of chapter 11 “Why does sitting still equal learning.” Too true for young kids. It’s one of the main reasons why, after student teaching in first grade classroom and then a preschool classroom in college, that I chose to teach preschool instead of elementary. My experience in the first grade classroom was hours of children being expected to sit at their desks and listen to the teacher. There were some of the 31 first graders who had an easier time with this then others. Some needed constant reminders to sit down and be quiet, or get their names written on the board as punishment, others simply stared out the window watching the goings on outside the classroom window as if they’d rather be out there than where they were. I had the same desire half the time! And this was a school that still had PE and recess, though both were short and all too soon they were back at their desks. In preschool though, it was different. The learning was, by nature, more active. “Teaching times” were short and the majority of the day was more free, allowing children to move and setting up the environment to accommodate this. The older children, those getting ready for kindergarten, were expected to “sit still” for longer periods and, again, some needed reminders not to touch anything or to stay engaged with what was being taught. The lessons that went over the best were those that included movement of some kind. Yeah, I like the title a lot.

  44. Kora says:

    These chapters really got me thinking about how I can incorporate more activities in my curriculum. We already do a ton of science projects, ect., but more in other areas. It was interesting that when kids are active and learning that they learn better. We always learned from a text book, so that fact that its harder to retain information learned in a book made me think, Maybe that’s why I don’t remember stuff from high school.

  45. Bobbie S says:

    chapter 11
    So everyone learns diferently, personal kids as examples, daughter (oldest) she learns with music on in background, also this is her claiming way to deal with stress. Son (middle) hands on learner, he can watch you, he can read it, but he gets it when he gets his hands dirty. My youngest we don’t know yet cause he is 2. Me I read it, listen to music to memorize my answers for a test, I like lots of background noise. So I use this in my daycare and try to stay as laid back as I can while teaching a child and this helps mom and will help determine if child needs and IEP.
    chapter 12
    I believe alot of this has to do with parents wanting to see work or worksheets. Parents of my 3 yr old girl, are always asking did she learn letter A did you have her do worksheets where is her craft for the day. So fusterating again children need to be children we can learn our letters in the dirt while planting an apple tree or something.

  46. Sue says:

    I also find the brain is much more active during physical activity. I remember falling asleep daily in both biology and physics classes, because all we did was listen to a teacher lecture.
    By teaching and doing the movements–over, under, through etc- the children really grasp the concept.

  47. Terri VanHoudt says:

    living in MN with our winters and the days that are rainy, i purchased one of those mini trampoline with the bar across to hang on. the kids love being able to jump on and release the energy.

  48. Jessica Kabogoza says:

    While I have known for a long time that it can often be difficult for young children to sit still for a lengthy period of time, I suppose I haven’t given much thought to older children and adults possibly struggling with the same thing. While there are times that each individual will be required to keep their body still, it really doesn’t seem right to make frequent movement a priority. I was thinking back to being in junior high and high school and remembering only getting 5 minutes in between classes until you needed to go and sit again for an hour. I would think that implementing more movement into children’s and adults days would also help with the obesity problem we have in America. That would definitely solve two problems with one solution.

  49. Terri VanHoudt says:

    In Early childhood they talk about learning while playing. We use a lot of manipulatives to represent numbers when counting. We use every day items things that we see in everyday use or on commutes. This is the same for learning numbers, alphabet or social skills. I would use these as “teachable moments”. Whether it is 2 kids for wanting to use same marker or same doll. Don’t tell them how to solve it, but giving them the opportunity to come up with ideas from questions you ask them. Older kids, i have many times when they come to me say, sit down and figure it out. Talk it out with ideas. At the very last resort i will tell them to google it. If they find something they think will work, i will say, now you need to find out if we have everything you need or do we have something else that might work the same. We did journal’s 1 year when i had a lot of schoolage kids. I told them they could write, color, draw, use anything they wanted in the journal. It went over pretty good. There was only a few times i had to remind them. Had a couple boys, them i had to remind more. Their mindset was it was more a girl thing. I had to remind them, there are men that write movies, artists…etc…
    If i would have had more of a hands on schooling i think i would have enjoyed school more. As a grownup i now love to learn new things. Out of all the classes i had as a child i thought History was dumb. But, know what….i LOVE history now. I read all the history books i can find.

    As far as sitting still, i do have the kids sit to much during activities. It is my quirks that it bugs me when kids are standing or spinning in circles, standing when i am reading. I feel they are not listening, and it distracts the 1 year olds. I think i need to do more movement time in between books. When we do have books with movements, i try and have them do it. If a book has a repeatable rhyme through out the book i will try to have kids repeat the rhyme at appropriate time.

  50. Anna Patnode says:

    Week 8 – 7/30/18
    Reading – chapter 11 and 12
    Movement is gold in my preschool classes. We move A LOT and I plan in many transitions to allow for shifting attentions. Rae’s book has challenged and encouraged me to focus on play learning and movement learning even more. Letting go of my need to have the children sit still. I was not unaware of the way children learn but I feel ju was still trying to put them in a “sit still” box, probably thinking I was serving them well. I look forward to my upcoming year to ask myself the hard questions and get kids moving. Not just moving to move but intentional movement in all areas of learning. I also look forward to allowing the children to learn their preferred method and letting go of my own need to have control. I think with the right mindset I can overcome by desires for control and see the children really flourish.

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