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Friday, 8 February 2013

Friday Thoughts - Family

I am slowly beginning to get to know the little ones that I am working with this year, their likes, their skills, their personalities and about their famiies.

Currently we are learning about our families. Even though this topic is perceived as basic curriculum or knowledge for little ones -  for children to state the members of their families -  it can be quite complex for some children. Sensitivity and an awareness of this complexity is a must, as this topic could trigger off a range of emotions inside these little souls. Feelings such as anger, sadness, grief and confusion may arise as these children realise that their family is 'different' to others.

However, despite this, children need assurance that even though there are differences between families, these differences are OK and that families are places of love, safety, support and care. I emphasise that the children in my care are valued, that I care about their learning and I try to ensure as much routine as possible to provide stability.

Despite the cautions, learning about families can be fun. Here are a few ideas...
  • Paint a family portrait.
  • Labelling copies of family photographs, identifying different family members.
  • Browse through baby albums of the child and their siblings.
  • Look at photos of celebratory and happy family events. Talk about why this was such a joyful event, maybe write a recount of this event.
  • Make pop stick puppets of family members - drawing pictures of family members on small pieces of card and taping pop sticks on the back.
  • Find where different family members live on a map.
  • Write letters to family members that live in different towns/cities.
Have a wonderful weekend!

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