In recent weeks I’ve written papers that will lead to my recommendations for a workshop for teachers of early grades. The workshops are designed to focus on the teacher as the catalyst that is meant to create an environment of mutuality, respect for the individual and the importance of each child as the unique being they must be and are to become. Being a listener, a questioner, a confirmer and being candid in response are the essential building blocks to each child’s becoming. And with the teacher being this as their role model, they do.
Academics and how to teach reading, numbers and writing are not the purpose of the workshop and are not to be included. The sole purpose is to empower each child and to give them the tools of respect, regard, relationships and dialogue with each other and their adult example.
In most cases what will be experienced by each child may not be their experience at home and around the “kitchen table.” At home most children are not empowered to be in dialogue with their family, but to be witness. The more common experience for most children is to be silent and an observer to family conversation.
As a child develops so do the powers of others outside their family; the potential for being influenced by the “sensitive, aware teacher” is immense. But this potential has both the power to grow the child as a unique, sensitive, aware of others, person, or to close the child off to themselves and harden their defenses. And the full reason for the workshops I suggest. Early grade teachers are the key to opening a child to their potential and why, as the role model, teachers are the one that can make a huge difference in a child’s life. Sy