In today’s world, where most parents are bogged down by their daily routine and technological bombardment and tired from their jobs, most onus for everyday learning comes on the teachers.
In a high quality teaching environment it is crucially important to build relationships with children and pay a lot of attention to their thinking process developing and opening channels of communication with the young individual. It’s the teachers’ responsibility to open all their senses to the child’s needs before expecting them to follow instructions.
A high quality teacher would spend adequate time for curriculum planning and reflection. They attend carefully to the child’s language and find ways to make them think aloud or find answers to everyday problems. Guidance in such cases is minimal, offering just enough assistance to be helpful but not so much or so little that we end up completing the task for the child. Concepts and ideas and understanding need to be built into the curriculum before worksheets and guided help are given.
Any preschool proud of its curriculum incorporates complex cognitive and interpersonal skills like self-regulation, self-direction, developing individual perspective, forming connections, critical thinking and willingness to try new challenges.
Such high quality teachers provide ample opportunities to hear and use complex, interactive language. Their planning supports learning processes and a wide range of socio-emotional skills and active everyday practical learning. These teachers would also involve the parents in the child’s learning to take it the required distance.
Having observed a lot of teacher’s enthusiasm for class decoration; there is growing evidence that material clutter negatively affects learning. As visual distraction increases, the child’s ability to focus, stay on task and learn new information decreases. So, do look out for a clean clutter free hygienic environment in the school you choose.
All in all I would like to end with- the best of teachers is a failure if she fails to ignite the flame of inborn curiosity. As Maria Montessori said in a note sent home to the parents, that if we parents failed to recognize evidence of learning in a child who spent the whole day immersed in stories and blocks or trying to make a Styrofoam boat stay afloat, well, that was going to be our problem , not our child’s.