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The children think of the hour in the day that I call Choice Time, as their playtime, I know that it is so much more.
A high-standards kindergarten curriculum, should include opportunities for children to develop reading and writing skills. When we develop a classroom that encourages inquiry and exploration, we empower children, giving them skills they will use throughout their lives. This entry was posted in Investigating Choice Time: Inquiry, Exploration, and Play and tagged block building, child-generated ideas, children with parents in jail, curriculum, doctor's office, high-standards kindergarten, king of hearts, playtime, read aloud, reading and writing workshop, social and emotional growth, teacher generated, word study on March 25, 2012 by Renee. It’s not unusual to see children become fascinated with a ladybug crawling across a branch, an ant working its way over a fence or a caterpillar inching itself through the grass.
So what happens in a kindergarten class where children who are studying playgrounds are introduced to a tankful of snails in their science center? Of course this magical combination of a snail study and playground study needs some special conditions to allow this idea to take shape.
When I visited during Choice Time this week, the children were in the midst of the playground study that began even before the start of the school year. Over the course of the last few months the class has taken many trips to playgrounds both in the neighborhood, in Prospect Park, and around the city. Children worked in partnerships to draw plans for a snail playground and they shared these drawings with each other. Then, during Choice Time, children signed up to begin constructing the playgrounds with their partners. It’s so gratifying to see children traveling through this study at a snail’s pace…exploring, creating, collaborating, improvising and having a wonderful time. This entry was posted in Investigating Choice Time: Inquiry, Exploration, and Play and tagged art center, Choice Time, imagination, irish children's chant, next steps, observations, open-ended art materials, playground, playground safety, playground study, project, science center, snail, snail study on March 20, 2012 by Renee.
If you are in New York City on March 10th, there’s a very exciting conference taking place at City College.
The widening gap in our society between children of low-income backgrounds their more affluent peers, along with new insights gained from an explosion of research in the neurobiological, behavioral, and social sciences, have captured the public’s attention about the importance of childhood and the need for high quality education. It is in the context of these issues that this conference addresses how educators and schools can nurture children in accordance with their developmental needs and teach them in the ways that they learn.
Supporting organizations: Alliance for Childhood, American Museum of Natural History, Bank Street College of Education, Child Care Council at CUNY, Child Development Institute at Sarah Lawrence College, City College Child Development Center, Community Playthings, Democracy Inquiry Group of New England, Manhattan Country School, New York City Early Childhood Professional Development Institute of CUNY, SciPlay Center of the New York Hall of Science, and the UFT Teacher Center.
The Mutt-i-grees Curriculum is a comprehensive program that bridges humane education and Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), In a series of easily implemented lessons, the Mutt-I-grees Curriculum enhances children’s social and emotional skills and introduces them to Mutt-i-grees, a new term for shelter pets.
We will present a framework for planning that takes into account standards as well as principles of learner-centered education. This presentation explores the effects of modern social media, the “Race to Nowhere” phenomenon, and parental pressure on today’s children.
Finland’s school system is consistently at the top of international rankings for education systems. The workshop will feature screening of the film When Learning Comes Naturally followed by discussion on the relationship between children and nature. This will be an interactive workshop based on an article by the same name published in Encounter Magazine.
This workshop will focus on the path to early literacy development in young children, focusing on the drawing and storytelling that contribute to children’s beginning awareness and exploration of reading and writing. This presentation will discuss the long-term research showing the need for play-based learning (a combination of rich content offered in experiential ways, combined with child-initiated play) and how to develop it in an era of standards and testing. Children’s socio-dramatic play provides rich opportunities for teachers to scaffold and support children’s early literacy learning and language acquisition.
This presentation will describe a collaboration between two teacher educators, one specializing in early childhood education and the other in environmental education, to help early childhood teacher education students learn how to plan and use out-of-school trips to reimagine how non-formal learning environments might be used in work with young children. This presentation will address the challenges (in light of the pressures from the drive for meeting standards in schools) of incorporating opportunities for play and exploration into afterschool programs rather than focusing on remediation during this important time of day. This session will help participants understand the important role inquiry studies and choice time centers play in the lives of children.
This cross-cultural presentation provides images from early childhood schools in India, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Maldives and China: five countries that differ from each other racially, ethnically, linguistically, religiously, geographically, and politically. The Reggio Emilia approach to the education of young children that developed under the visionary leadership of Loris Malaguzzi has roots in the intellectual traditions of progressive education, constructivism, and the Italian postwar leftist politics. Over 30 cultural arts organizations representing the five art forms (theatre, dance, visual art, music and media) will be on hand to provide information and material on how to bring quality arts programming into your schools, communities and centers. With potentially hundreds of arts and cultural institutions in the city to choose from, how does a school go about finding the appropriate partner? This presentation describes the progression of studies in two early childhood classrooms that simultaneously address district and state expectations while remaining developmentally-appropriate and exciting for children and teachers alike.
This “voice-on” workshop is about singing in early childhood: joys, risks, classroom management aspects, curriculum implications, and the specific challenges for the song leader.
This session will be addressed to parents, teachers, and administrators who find themselves wondering about and working to make the case for the importance of imaginative play in all aspects of young children’s development. In this workshop, we will share best practices and lessons learned about new, innovative approaches to parks programming built around a culture of play. Participants in this workshop will design and build their own cars and learn how to get their students to think and act like engineers, scientists, writers and artists. This presentation explores how children’s literature documents and sustains the value of free play. This session focuses on the importance of involvement with nature for children’s development. Despite distinctions between the Nordic countries all five nations are in agreement about basic concepts that constitute “the good childhood”. This multimedia presentation features photo and video documentation of a 6 week experimental curriculum to have preschool students design their own classroom environment. This interactive session invites educators to discuss the book choices we implement for and encourage from our own students.


Mollie Welsh Kruger, Reading and Literacy Program faculty, Bank Street College of Education. Teacher education candidates from different countries describe early learning environments in their home countries and discuss differences with child-centered pedagogies.
This presentation describes how children can explore their identify and cultural understandings through a project approach. This presentation describes a project with a community group in Bengaluru, India to elicit children’s perspectives on play and then design and create inclusive play spaces for “all” children (including children with special needs).
This presentation will share research about the impact of the Common Core State Standards on preschool programs around the country.
This part of the presentation is an interactive opportunity – to play with objects from nature and to reflect on the value of imaginative play with the natural world. In the winter (Austral summer) of 2009-2010, Elise Engler spent two months in Antarctica as a recipient of a National Science Foundation Antarctica Artists and Writers Grant.
This entry was posted in Investigating Choice Time: Inquiry, Exploration, and Play and tagged Defense of Childhood, joy of learning, preparing children for school success on March 4, 2012 by Renee. Since 2006, Reliant Defense has been conducting ITAR audits, including those requested by the State Department’s Office of Defense Trade Controls Compliance.  We also conduct internal Assessments to support companies striving to meet DDTC, BIS or CBP guidelines, bench mark to other companies or to prepare for an outside audit. Our process is straightforward and includes two primary focus areas to assess compliance with the regulations.
Collectively, there are hundreds of individual audit and validation points assessed which will be evaluated for the final report provided to you. For over seven years, Reliant Defense has been conducting ITAR audits, including those requested by the State Department’s Office of Defense Trade Controls Compliance. When they have the opportunity to self-direct their activities at Choice Time, they are attempting to make sense of the adult world. When we plan Choice Time with this same philosophy and intent, we open up opportunities for helping children to grow socially and intellectually. They don’t need instruction on what to do with climbing bars, swings, a sandbox or a crawling tunnel. During the summer Bill sent out a letter letting the children know that they were all going to become playground experts that year!
They periodically walk to a nearby site to observe the development of a new playground being built. When the playgrounds were completed, they signed up for taking turns to bring the playgrounds to the science center so that they could let the snails try out the equipment!
Yesterday when I visited the class, I recorded some of my observations as I watched two children at the art center and two at the science center. The means to achieving these goals, however, has recently focused on preparing children for school success primarily through an emphasis on standardized testing. Presenters will share effective practices and make recommendations for how school and societal challenges can be negotiated to create more effective and more equitable learning environments to enhance the life chances of our youngest citizens. Developed by the North Shore Animal League America, in collaboration with Yale University School of the 21st Century and TV’s Dog Whisperer Cesar Millan, the Curriculum has been implemented in hundreds of schools in 40 states.
After a short philosophical presentation, participants will work in small groups to uncover how the forms of dance, theater, visual art, and music can inform their own pedagogy.
We will view together and discuss the film “From Pictures To Words”, made for The Learning Child Series, a collaboration of Sarah Lawrence College’s Child Development Institute and Jonathan Diamond Associates. Carini and teachers at the Prospect School and Center, a student teacher (and her host teacher) will present a holistic non-judgmental portrayal of a child through the lens of the five headings of the Descriptive Review.
Come learn to play with these new tools and concepts as we collectively create our own ZPD.
Participants will learn practical strategies for building socio-dramatic play scenarios that support language learning through the Storypath approach.
The presentation will include artifacts (including photographs of field experiences and student work) from visits to Brooklyn Children’s Museum, Central Park, and the Brooklyn Botanical Garden as well as related hands-on activities. Participants will explore options and share knowledge of how to develop a “Playgroup” component for afterschool programs.
Highlighted are curriculum, activities and materials, the nature of children’s work, and the physical environments of schools and classrooms.
Early childhood educators, child development specialists, school administrators and even politicians cannot seem to agree on the role of play in the classroom, so how can we possibly expect parents to value play when there is such a lack of clarity? There are also important influences of history, culture, and traditions of participatory democracy involving an activist citizenry. This workshop will offer key questions to ask arts organizations, share the state mandate for arts education, and develop clear next steps in designing a quality arts program. We will demonstrate how relationships, activities, and environments within a play-based classroom experience promote healthy brain development. The challenges involved in making this happen within the constraints of the public school system will be discussed. This workshop is an invitation to partake in the spirited give and take of such questions, a reminder of the many visible and invisible poetries at the root of our desire, from childhood onwards, to simply ask a question. We will show the film “When a Child Pretends” and facilitate a discussion of the crucial role such play serves in and of itself and as preparation for later learning and growth.
We will trace the evolution of programming at Battery Park City Parks and Friends of the High Line, focusing on nature and art as vehicles for imagination and open-ended exploration, and discuss the recent development of the Children’s Workyard Kit, a kit of open-ended play and building materials developed for the High Line by designer Cas Holman.
Award-winning authors and illustrators like David Small, Zibby Oneal, Christopher Paul Curtis, and Erin Stead have been chosen because their picture books, chapter books, and young adult novels demonstrate how play histories of racial, gender and geographic difference translate into careers of creative production.
It features a video screening and discussion of the benefits of children’s involvement with animal care and the similarities between children’s and animals’ need to play. It features reflections on the experience by the students in their own words, a chance to play and interact with the specific materials used, and a brief review of some of the pedagogical thinking and planning principles that inspired us. Recognizing that a just-right book has great value, the session will begin with this focus; together we will consider what else needs to inform our ‘matchings’ of books and readers. Her work, through drawing, painting, video and photographs chronicles the entire experience from applying for the grant to time spent in two penguin colonies, at the main research base at McMurdo Station, in the Dry Valleys and at the Amundsen – Scott South Pole Station.


After the tire failed, the trailer slipped off the right side of the road, overturned, and went over an embankment.
After hearing news of an oncoming invasion, the villagers quickly fled to the countryside, accidentally leaving the gates of the town asylum unlocked.
If we listen closely to their conversations and monologues, we can become privy to many of their understandings, misunderstandings, and questions. This can occur when we encourage children to find ways of recording and sharing their discoveries at the sand table, write messages to each other in a class post office, label their art work, put up important signs by their block buildings, write a recipe for making playdough or make new jackets for their favorite storybooks. These children need to have had the time and encouragement to freely observe and explore snails in their science center. He encouraged the children to bring in, on their first day of school, drawings and pictures of playgrounds. They discovered what snails like to eat, how quickly they move, and, of course, how to care for them. Later, when I left the class, I looked over my observations and jotted down some thoughts about them and some possible next steps. The workshop will include the research base on SEL, resiliency and human-animal interactions review of lessons and best practices, bringing a dog to class and findings of preliminary evaluations which show that curriculum outcomes include improved behavior and social skills among students and increased parent involvement. In conclusion, participants will use art materials to create a piece of work that reflects their own tone of teaching.
Participants in this session will be active listeners and contributors, sharing thoughts in support of the presenting teachers with regard to the focus they bring to frame the review. Using the elements of story, children are actively engaged in meaningful learning experiences using their imaginations while developing social and cultural understandings.
My goal is to contextualize within the Asian culture such concepts as perceptions of play, the role of cultural beliefs and tradition in the curriculum, the nexus between play and learning, and the circumstantial challenges to a child-entered pedagogy. Most parents have strong feelings concerning play and childhood, which are often connected to their own cultural expectations of the roles of work and play in life. The presentation involves a brief introduction to brain development and hands on exploration of materials. Photographs, activities, and materials combined with discussion, interaction, and exchange with participants will be integral to this workshop.
We will explore these ideas and their implications for teachers of young children based on our experiences at a recent symposium on Nordic approaches to early childhood.
Her blog, Elise on Ice, was followed by many, including elementary school students throughout NYC. The trailer remained attached to the tractor as both went over the embankment, flipping the entire unit upside down.
At the art center, children were constructing spaceships from toilet paper rolls and egg cartons. There should be many opportunities for whole-class and small group discussions on a variety of topics. There should have been many experiences for children to use their imagination as they worked with a variety of open-ended art materials.
He suggested that they begin collecting boxes and other materials so that they could start the project. Using examples from several unique settings, we will illustrate the processes that individuals use when documenting children’s learning, and how we can support those new to documentation practices in taking their first steps as documenters.
How can parents become our “allies” in our fight to keep play firmly grounded in early childhood classrooms and other educational settings? Most explanations of the so-called “Reggio Approach” touch on the image of the child, the role of expressive arts, projects, the environment, documentation, and teacher inquiry and collaboration. As educators we must educate the whole child and the arts are one way to address our many diverse learners. Four children, wearing plastic goggles, were using screwdrivers and pliers to take apart a broken telephone; two children were busy at the water table constructing a water machine with plastic tubing and funnels. They take over the jobs of the absent villagers, understanding some aspects of each role, but adding their own, highly serious, sometimes comical, interpretations as they attempted to recreate life in the outside world. AND, quite importantly, there needs to be a teacher who values exploration, inquiry, play and imagination. Parents write and draw sketches of their personal memories of going to playgrounds when they were children. In addition to some brief history, this session will focus on images of life in the schools, and examples of publications and student work, to introduce participants to this thriving and dynamic community and the exemplary work they do on behalf of their youngest citizens. Russell Granet, founder of Arts Education Resource (AER), will facilitate the workshop and discussion. Granet has over twenty years of experience working with NYC arts organizations and the NYC public schools.
It was determined by Kentucky State Police that the driver was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the incident.
Somehow, in his play with Karl, he found a safe outlet for expressing his fears and concerns.
Each time Karl’s arm reaches out, a wooden block falls down and Luca quickly replaces it. He found a way to make the experience of being incarcerated safe for his father and less threatening for himself.
Toxicology tests detected tramadol, oxycodone, and hydrocodone in the driver's system at the time of the crash. The purpose of FACE is to aid in the research and prevention of occupational fatalities by evaluating events leading to, during, and after a work related fatality. Please contact In-house FACE program personnel regarding In-house FACE reports and to gain assistance when State-FACE program personnel cannot be reached.



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