Creating learning environments that meet everyone’s needs.

 

This morning I attended a presentation with the hilarious and engaging Marc Battle. Marc is a passionate educator who knows and understands the value and importance of the environment in which children play (more about that here).

For Marc, that means blending in his passion for the arts, more specifically music, and the beautiful connection that can be found from the power of song (click here for a beautiful example of learning positive affirmations through song).

What struck me most was Marc’s view on emergent curriculum; building on the interests of the children in our care, co-creating the environments where the children are ignited and filled with wonder (learn more here).

This is not a new theory. It’s a widely believed and supported theory.

But how does that apply to children who have special needs?

How does it apply to those who may not be able to voice their interests in the same way as the other children in a group do?

How do we create emergent curriculum and co-create environments for the children who have unrecognized abilities?

*This post contains affiliate links which if used cost you nothing extra, but a small percentage comes back to me to support more learning! You’re welcome to check out my privacy policy or reach out to me directly with questions anytime!*

When we consider the learning through play that is critical in the successful skill development of the children in our care, how does this apply to those children with disabilities and special needs? Click here to read about how changing perspective can create environments for everyone.  #teacher #parent #ece #educator #emergent #curriculum  #toddler #preschooler #early #childhood #education #booksbeesandabcs
When we consider the learning through play that is critical in the successful skill development of the children in our care, how does this apply to those children with disabilities and special needs? Click here to read about how changing perspective can create environments for everyone.  #teacher #parent #ece #educator #emergent #curriculum  #toddler #preschooler #early #childhood #education #booksbeesandabcs

Unrecognized abilities. What a beautiful term (coined by Shafik Asante, shared by Marc).

I had never heard this term used in this way before and it struck me whole-heartedly.

When we have children in our care that have disabilities, visible or not, we work to support their inclusion into a group. And this, under these terms, is not very inclusive at all.

Looking at unrecognized abilities allows us to put the focus on the work we do as parents and educators, to find what makes this child special, what voice they have, the passions that ignite them in a way that works for them, what strengths they have to share with us.

This is a very different view from the traditional where we have been looking at it as the child’s disability as the barrier for inclusion.

With this view we are stating that it is all the things they cannot do that removes them from the group.

The barrier here is really our mindset.

Marc gave an example about how we feel we need to invite, accept and welcome everyone INTO a group and how flawed this view is. Turning this view around completely, realizing that we are all already in the group, and that is our job to ensure that no one is EXCLUDED from it.

This reshapes that initial thought of environments that allow everyone, including children with unrecognized abilities to be an active part of the community of little ones in your care.

By removing the barriers that exclude them, viewing these children as ALREADY part of the group, and finding the parts of us all that are common, we are changing our perception on what needs to be done.

This term has really opened my eyes to a new definition of community – one where everyone’s gifts are celebrated, where we can change how we look at our environment and adjust it to the needs of everyone in the room; where are all filled with wonder.

I would love to hear about your experience in co-creating environments for the children in your care – comment below or reach out to me directly here.

Meaningful Learning in Early Childhood Education

Creating meaningful learning in early childhood education doesn’t have to be overwhelming and complicated. You don’t need the newest toys, you don’t need to spend a small fortune changing your playroom into dramatic play environments that are worthy of Pinterest or Instagram. You just have to trust in the learning that comes from play, with the child in the lead.

read more

Yoga for the Early Childhood Education Classroom and at Home with Little Ones

There are incredible benefits for including yoga as part of the early childhood education program or at home with young children. As parents and educators it’s so important that we model the strategies for lifelong success for the kids in our care, but also to take care of ourselves so we can better take care of those we love.

read more

The 5 Love Languages of Children

Bookclub Review: The 5 Love Languages of Children: The Secret to Loving Children Effectively I’ve had this book among my collection for a long time. It wasn’t until I reached out to my awesome community and asked if anyone wanted to join me in reading it that I...

read more

Self love and confidence through SONG: Lindsay Müller

Lindsay Müller is a creating Mindful Music for Children and Other Humans - She shared her story here: Three years ago, I was a stressed out mom of two energetic toddlers. I felt like most of the words that came out of my mouth were:    "Be careful!"  "Don't do that!" ...

read more

The Never Ending Story…

Social Skills from Storytelling I love my job. I genuinely love what I do. I get to work with educators who are changing lives every day. I get to watch the magic happen in between wiped noses and zipped zippers. That magic spot where a child feels fully heard and...

read more

0 Comments

Add to the conversation! I would love to hear your thoughts!

learning through play every day books bees and abcs toddler preschooler learning activities

Join the Community

Sign up here for access to resources, freebies and support right in your inbox. I reach out weekly to share recent posts, and the newly created printables for the week and you're welcome to reply with your questions and comments that I will happily support you with as best as I can!

I know the feeling of an already overwhelmed inbox so I won't be sending unnecessary content to you and you're welcome to unsubscribe at any time. 

Learn more about my privacy policy here.

You have successfully signed up for free educational content to your inbox! So happy to have you!