Important Things I Learned from First Graders When I Was Forty
Reblogging some of my early posts written when I only had a handful of followers.
Thirty-five years ago when I taught a combined first and second grade class, it was an unparalleled opportunity to see human beings in an unvarnished state. At that time children weren’t being sent to daycare at birth, and kindergartens were non-existent in small towns and rural areas like ours, so the strongest influence in most of my young students’ lives had been a relatively accepting and affirming mother or grandmother. The children hadn’t been lacquered with social conformity yet and their unique personalities and ways of responding to life hadn’t been labeled or graded. It was an amazing experience of the delightful, though challenging, diversity in human nature. Seeking different approaches to teaching, so the explosive joy of learning could happen for each child, was a fascinating puzzle.
The effects of prior influences such as family economics were definitely identifiable, but still somewhat malleable.
When Larry, a well scrubbed youngster…
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