Oh Blogging!

Oh blogging! When my classmates and I were first introduced to blogging, I was nervous. Even though I love to write, especially about topics I’m passionate about, I was still scared. I had never blogged before and did not think I would do it right. I was nervous about sounding unintelligent in front of my peers, but I’m sure they felt the same way. By my third post I got the hang of it, but was still struggling to see myself as a writer over a teacher.

Throughout this process, I focused on multiple topics. The first topic I focused on was about play in an early childhood setting. I chose this topic, because in each of my early childhood classes, there was always the topic of play brought up. In the article, Children at Play an Innovative Method From Studying and Teaching Nutritional Behaviors, play is an important part of a child’s health. When a child is involved in play, they are socially, cognitively, and physically involved. When I am at work or at placement, I see how the students are working together or solving problems on their own through play. They’re learning how to express their ideas, thoughts, and typical behavior. In my future classroom, I would love to implement play throughout the day.

Another article I blogged about was, The Relationship Between Teachers’ Implementation of Classroom Management Practices and Student Behavior in Elementary School. This article mentions how Teachers’ classroom management practices have a direct impact on their students’ success. Good classroom management involves active instruction, supervision of students, opportunities for students to respond, and feedback to students. Classroom management is something that I worry about now as a future teacher. I am constantly thinking of ways to establish classroom management with my students. I believe if there is good classroom management, the behavior of children will be better and the classroom will run like a well-oiled machine. In my field experience this semester, my teacher did well with classroom management. She always explained to my peers and I that it is important to stop negative behavior right away. If you let the child run all over you once, it’ll keep happening. I will always keep that in mind with me as I move into my senior year at Millersville University.

As a hands-on learner, movement in the classroom is important to me. I believe students should not be sitting for more than 20 minutes at a time. Even now that I am in college, I cannot sit in a chair and focus for more than 40 minutes. The article, Movement and Learning in Elementary School, movement is proven to increase student interest and control negative behavior. When students are forced to sit down for long periods of time that is when they become disengaged in the learning and start to act out. In the kindergarten room at work, I can see the difference in the students’ behaviors after I have them take a brain break, dance party, or hands-on activity. The bad behaviors decrease. Movement is linked with long-term memory, as well. When a student is moving around while learning, they are more likely to retain the information they learned. The reason for that is because they were having fun leading them to be attentive. I plan on including movement in my classroom when I become a teacher.

So I have two questions for all of you. What will you incorporate in your classrooms to be an effective teacher? How has blogging influenced you as a future teacher?

All in all, blogging helped me interact with topics I’m interested in. I was about to reflect on teaching strategies, communicate with others, and learn how to find credible sources. I have been able to reflect on myself as a future teacher, as well. My professors have given me the opportunity to better myself as an educator and relate what I have learned to the real world around me by assigning my classmates and I to blog.

What? Play Isn’t Just Play?

Throughout my years at Millersville University, each of my early childhood classes has touched on play in the classroom. We have had many discussions as to why play is important in child development. In each class, I have learned more and different information about the importance of play. In my future classroom, I would love to implement play throughout the day. I see the children at my job play the majority all day and they’re learning many things through play.

The article, Children at Play an Innovative Method From Studying and Teaching Nutritional Behaviors, talks about the impact play has on a child’s nutritional behaviors. Obesity develops from genetics and environment. Children may be more likely to learn healthy nutritional behaviors in environments that contain social influences. Those social influences happen with their parents, teachers, and peers. With each of those people, children can take part in play. With parents and teachers, they can learn about healthy meals and why it is important to eat well. While children are with their peers, they’re typically running around outside or inside. They’re constantly on the go with their peers, leading them to have active lifestyles and avoid obesity.

When a child learns through play, they’re learning how to express their ideas, thoughts, and typical behaviors. When a child is playing with their friend, they’re learning how to tell their friend how they feel and express themselves. A large part of a young child’s life is being active. This helps with their characteristic age progression, as well. The article also mentioned the play decreases stress. If a child is feeling stressed or worried about something, getting their energy out helps them significantly.

The nutritional behavior of a child plays an important part in their development. If a child does not eat healthy or go outside to play with their friends, they’re missing a significant part of their childhood. Eating healthy will lead them to live healthy lives as adults and have healthy bodies. When a child is able to partake in physical activity, especially with peers, they’re learning social skills and starting to get their bodies in shape. If they’re bodies are healthy inside and out, their minds will be.

Next time your students are taking part in play, observe each of them. What are they talking about with one another? What fine and gross motor skills are they learning? How can I involve myself to be a part of their development through play? I believe each of us could learn something from our students. What will you learn from them?