also help teachers and children see visually the things
that they have accomplished both as individuals and as a
community of learners. Children should be encouraged
to annotate and caption the mind maps freely.
If children are to realize their full potential as
innovators, then educators must always challenge
children to meet their potential. So often we accept the
bare minimum from children, or celebrate “cuteness”
over learning. In the early years of life children go from
being helpless infants to having most of the mental and
physical faculties of an adult. During this period of rapid
development, a human beings capacity to learn and
grow is unparalleled, and so it is critical for educators
to always challenge children.
Children are natural innovators and problem solving.
Education can either help this natural proclivity to
blossom, or stifle it. It is the job of early childhood
educators to ensure that children have ample time to
explore, play and solve problems. We must offer them
safe, novel, and material rich environments, observe
them carefully and give them direct and actionable
feedback. Young children are limitless potential, and
educators must always find ways to partner with them
as co-creators of rich learning.
a. Feedback. Early Childhood Educators must always
resist the tendency to praise. We must eliminate the
phrase “good job” from our vocabulary. We must know
how to explain to children how they can improve their
work, how they better explore the questions of truth,
beauty and goodness.
In her book “Radical Candour” Kim Scott argues that
bosses must “care personally, and challenge directly”
their staff. Teachers of all kinds, but especially Early
Childhood Educators must do the same. We must care
deeply for the children in our charge, but not at the
expense of their development. As careful observers
of children, we should understand and be prepared to
push them to their highest potential.