Inquiring Minds is delighted to share this post from our Prekindergarten teachers, Mrs. Abreu and Ms. Howe.
Our journey began with exploring the words ‘I’ and ‘me.’ This concept of ‘Self’ began to emerge through collaboration, play, small group activities and socialization. This evolved into the notion of ‘We’. This inquiry recognized their individual abilities and characteristics, which then transformed into empathy, compassion, and ultimately, friendship between individuals. Making friends in the Early Years is the building block for permanent relationships, helping the children feel secure, confident and a part of the social group.
The children began to turn their focus and attention from themselves to their friends. Caring for ourselves transpired into concern and caring for all. Our investigation of ‘Friendship’ commenced the moment they entered our classroom in September. For many this was the first experience to build and form relationships with friends. Cooperation, turn taking, problem solving and negotiating are building the foundation of relationships. Daily, we continue to build a greater community. Our journey is evolving, as we build greater and stronger bonds with our peers. Social Identity encompasses “I”, “Me” to “We”.The United Nations Committee on the ‘Rights of the Child’ shares that, “The Convention requires that children, including the very youngest children, be respected as persons in their own right. Young children should be recognized as active members of families, communities and societies, with their own concerns, interests and points of view.” (Rights Respecting Schools, 2005)In reference to our Curriculum Connections which are taken from: Early Learning for Every Child today (ELECT). Social Interest encourages children to observe, imitate peers and engage in group activities. Making friends offers a chance for young children to exchange ideas, materials and points of view. Identity formation is a significant part of expressing joy in a child’s characters and identity. These learning benchmarks have guided and supported us as we travelled through the journey of Self Identity to Friendship which led us to building strong Relationships in Prekindergarten.