Not always what you intend...
Throughout the post, I will interject my reflections with "possibilities for learning".
During this week's class, we immersed the children in paint. Painting at the wall, painting on tables, painting on the floor, and painting with toys that roll or walk. This experience gives children the freedom to do what toddlers do best, wander and explore! I want to create a class where parents and children don't have to worry about children "behaving". I hope that when "behaving correctly" leaves the thoughts and minds of the parents and children, that instead, thoughts of investigation, experimentation, curiosity, and inquiry instead emerge. However, that doesn't mean conflict, awkwardness, and tears don't happen. But...I do believe that if we respect children and truly listen to them, they will give us opportunities to model conflict resolution, manners, respect, and responsibility. I admit, I welcome conflict into the classroom because it is only through dialogue and discourse that self-reflection can take place. This may sound like quite a paradox of thoughts but I hope to further clarify.
* Whole arm, large muscle movements strengthen the shoulders/arms of young children. Having lots of opportunity to coordinate and exercise these muscles then makes it possible to have stronger small muscle coordination when they go to write or draw.
* Cause and Effect
* Eye-Hand coordination
* Visual and Spatial awareness are strengthened as children cover part or all of their painting surfaces
* Decision making
* Cooperation and/or problems solving as they share materials
* A sense of identity emerges as children freely create and express themselves