There has been a lot of people getting all worked up over Obama's State of the Union Address. It took me a week or so from when I started seeing comments to actually look into "The Plan." I was seeing a lot of negative reactions from Early Childhood professionals from all different types of programs. Their reasons for being upset were all different and I started to get VERY confused. Not to mention its impossible to find a non-biased source.
When I finally had a chance to sit down and read the Address, I was even more confused. I didn't really see anything to get worked up about. In fact, I didn't really see more than a couple paragraphs about Obama's Universal 4 Year Old Program. I realized there was a Fact Sheet that accompanied the address.
I don't tend to be a very political person, but this was something I needed to understand for the future. I still can't really tell you what it said or what the implications might be. I still don't know how I feel about most of it, but I did see two words that made my stomach flip-flop.
Part of the plan for the 4 year old plan outlined included a, "RIGOROUS Curriculum."
Takoma Park Nursery School in Maryland has been posting photos on Facebook, displaying perfect examples of learning through play with captions that said things like,
"Hopefully by "rigorous
curriculum for 4-year olds",
they mean protecting the selkies from
sharks using launchable magic ring
while Siamese cats build a perch."
Takoma Park also had a great guest post on their blog titled
Here is some of the Rigorous Curriculum we have been working on this week.
This has been one of those weeks that leaves me feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. The kids were so engaged in activities that they have created, that it was hard to interrupt them for my own agenda. I could link every single one of these photos to at least two or three early learning standards
Young children work hard at play. They invent scenes and
stories, solve problems, and negotiate their way through
social roadblocks. They know what they want to do and
work diligently to do it. Because their motivation comes
from within, they learn the powerful lesson of pursuing
their own ideas to a successful conclusion.
Crisis in the Kindergarten
|Shhh.. The baby is sleeping.|
|The dogs meet the horses.|
Explore and Create.
Another article I found:
NY Times: The State of the 4 Year-Olds