Beautiful Art Centers to Encourage Creativity

A beautifully designed art space encourages creativity and     inventiveness in thinking.

 

  • Children draw, paint, design, build and sculpt using their creativity.

  • art center
    Beautifully designed art center to encourage creativity journeyintoearlychildhood.com

    They use thinking skills to plan, organize, make decisions, and represent their ideas as they express their ideas through a variety of media.

  • Children grow cognitive, problem-solving, and decision-making skills while experimenting with color, line, shape, size, proportions, and dimensions. 

 

Maintaining Engaged Learning

Since we know that young children learn best through active engagement-  we must stand firm in our support and implementation of instructional practices that support constructing of knowledge through active experiences. We also need to develop and refine our own beliefs about young children in order to defend and protect best practices.

National Education Association for Young Children supports (based on multitude of research) a constructivist approach to teaching and learning in which young children construct their knowledge and understanding of the world through their experiences.

So the question to you is… how are you melding together the research based constructivist type approaches with the early learning standards to provide activities, questions/probes and  materials that are designed to challenge children’s thinking processes and encourage them to dig deeper into their understandings (based on student interest)?

 

Safe Risk- important for students

Risk is an important part of children’s play. Allowing children to take risks develops their self-confidence, to plan, to solve problems, to engage their creativity, to be challenged and to use judgment. All of these skills are critical for children’s growth in social – emotional, executive functioning and cognitive skills.
Risk can include gross motor activities such as climbing on a jungle gym, using shovels in a dirt pile, building with large tree stumps or sensory activities such as touching the gooey insides of a pumpkin, walking in paint, or playing in the mud. It also includes allowing children to create using real tools such a hammer and nails, maybe even building a bridge to cross the creek to explore the other side!
The teacher is the guide who provides an environment in which safe risk can occur, monitors children’s efforts and allows the child to do the work instead of stepping with a “That’s not safe.” Yes, we need to manage the risk; we stay close but we allow the child to experience that joy of accomplishment or be able to determine how to do it differently the next time. “Risk-taking is an essential part of children’s play. Managing that risk is the key to providing opportunities that support growth and development and keep children safe from unreasonable risk and injury. The balancing of these two is vital for our children’s health and development. (Allen and Rapee, 2005 cited in Sanseter, E. and Kennair, L. 2011) We need to remember that clothes, hands and feet can be washed, bumps and bruises are a part of growing and risk taking allows children to build resiliency, persistence, proprioceptive skills, confidence, independence, wonder and curiosity.
In what ways do you encourage children to take risks to become problem-solvers, inventors, and resourceful individuals in your classroom?

Great resource for further information on the benefits of risk:
http://www.allianceforchildhood.org/sites/allianceforchildhood.org/files/file/Adventure_-_The_Value_of_Risk_in_Children_s_Play.pdf