by Meg Ferris, Social Emotional Learning
Last week, I wrote about how counter-intuitive, yet essential Play is to learning. As ethologist Robert Fagen has said, “In a world continuously presenting unique challenges and ambiguity, play prepares [animals] for an evolving planet.” This is as true of humans as it is of other mammals.
However, as central as Play is, we cannot loose sight of basic skills. All advanced learning sits on a foundation of basic skills. Algebra, geography, and calculus rely on a student’s number sense and command of number facts. The bedrock of Literacy is connecting a symbol to a sound. For example, the symbol “c” represents two sounds, "s" and “k”. (City & cent are "s"; cat & cow are "k"). In SEL, the three most foundational skills are self-regulation, working memory, and cognitive flexibility (ie, shifting your thoughts from one thing to another, for example getting that sometimes "i" is I and other times is eye). Without mastery of basic skills, kids get bogged down when they are expected to learn more advanced skills, and soon come to distrust or hate school, or themselves.
If you think that I’m going to make a case for a return to “Skill and Drill” learning, hold tight. That isn’t where I am going. READ MORE...
Welcome to the Rocket Reader blog! The PTSA's collection of news & information relevant to QAE Families. This is also shared weekly in the Rocket Reader e-newsletter. Use the form below to sign up!
The Rocket Reader newsletter is sent weekly by the PTSA.