Building with blocks

Yesterday I had the pleasure of offering a workshop at the YMCA Tri - Cities Child Care Resource and Referral titled; Promoting the importance of Block play.  There were 19 participants and during the three hour workshop, relationships were created along with structures!  

Block play is not just about the structure, the properties of blocks or where the blocks go when the children are finished building. 

Block play inspires community through collaboration, communication and a sense of belonging.  Although children developmentally will play independently, parallel to another or cooperatively, it is up to the adults to facilitate the wonderful outcome of block building. 

I encouraged the participants to build as a team with the resources provided.  During this opportunity I observed various interactions, personality types and compromise.  Please know that I believe it is important that all humans have their own personality, however, I believe that we should be mindful of how we are INCLUSIVE of all personalities. 

After they worked on the structure I asked a few questions:

  • Did anyone take the lead?
  • What did you notice about your interactions with one another?
  • Did you need more time?
  • Did you want to build something on your own?
  • How did you problem solve together?
  • What were some of the learning outcomes? 

The answers to these questions helped me to support the goals of the exercise.  The goal is to assist educators and adults with the appreciation that how we show up for the children in our care, we are more than just monitors. 

We are facilitators of healthy social emotional brain development.  More than you bargained for?  If so, that is okay……I would ask you to consider a time when you felt as though you were included in something much bigger than you and how that made you feel.  How we ensure our children feel and build upon their importance and self worth, is one of our many roles. 

We are not just Building with blocks for math skills,  we are supporting them with building confidence, competence, creativity, community and a sense of wonder.  Either on their own or within a group, children need this opportunity! 

Cooperation:

Our community, more than ever needs to work together for the good of all.  When we have common goals we will have accomplished one of our unified goals;  which is to inspire young peopleto believe that they are competent and capable. 

  • I trust the power of unity
  • I would like to inspire children to offer help and ideas freely
  • I work with enthusiasm to support my community. 

Continue to build on your beliefs and what is in your hearts and minds.

Paula Milbradt

 

Paula MilbradtComment