Monday, January 30, 2012

Preschool Readiness

I was watching an episode of the offbeat comedy Portlandia last night and it showed an intense couple preparing their 4-year-old for preschool.  They had made up graphs to show their little boy how he needed to get into a private preschool otherwise his future was doomed to Community College and poor jobs for the rest of his life.  I was rolling with laughter when I watched this, but also a bit sad because I know some parents (though they won't admit it) actually feel this way.

I wanted to remind you to check out the Alliance for Childhood.  They post articles like, "Preschool Tests Take Time Away From Play" and many other child advocacy articles and resources.

This is the Alliance for Childhood poster that hangs in my office:


Childhood is a time for learning about the essentials—

about the heavenly world and the earthly,

about goodness, beauty, and truth.

Childhood is a time to be loved and to love,

to express fear and to learn trust,

to be serious, to be calm,

and to celebrate with laughter and joy.

Children have the right to dream,

and to grow at their own pace.

They have the right to make mistakes,

and the right to be forgiven.

Children have the right to be spared violence and hunger,

to have a home and protection.

They need support for growing up healthy,

with good habits and sound nutrition.

Children need people to respect,

adults whose example and loving authority they follow.

They need a range of experience—tenderness and kindness,

boldness and courage, even mischief and misbehavior.

Children need a loving relationship with the earth—

with animals and with nature,

with families and community.

Children need moments for reflection and space for curiosity,

protective boundaries and freedom to create,

and time to play, to work, to rest.

Children need to be introduced to a life of principles,

and given the freedom to discover their own.

The spirit of childhood calls for protection and nurture.

It is an essential part of every human being

and needs to be kept alive.