What is learning?

As a child I loved learning. Not necessarily in the sense of being in school learning facts from a teacher. I was naturally curious and interested about the world I lived in and I wanted to learn more about it by observing and investigating it.

I had a wild imagination as a child and I love to re-enact things that I had experienced in my day to day life. I loved being a child and this has probably led to the sort of practitioner that I have become as an adult. I am open minded enough to recognise that not all children may have the same traits that I did as a child (although this is another one of those nature v nurture debates), however I do strongly believe that most children would be enthused about creating potions outdoors using exciting smelly herbs and flowers and messy mud just as I was as a child (and still am!!).

It is so important that as practitioners we never lose our spirit of childhood and that we maintain a lifetime love of learning. There will always be things to discover about the world and the people who live on it, there will always be opportunities to explore and debate our lives. There will always be new things that can be created, investigated or invented.

This is the thing I love most about working with children, how it keeps my brain thinking in new ways. When observing and listening to each individual child’s ideas about their world it makes me question and add to my own ideas. I am passionate about co-constructing new ideas about the world with children as they haven’t yet had negative influences and experiences that make them cynical. Children are creative, innovative human beings who are ready to discover a future that we, as adults, have forgotten how to imagine.

A wise lecturer at University has a quote that was famous in our year but it will always stay with me. Thanks to Fiona Hunter for these wonderful wise words…

The day you stop learning is the day you stop teaching.

Who is the teacher in your classroom? Never stop learning.

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