Learning communities in day-care centers.
Learning through playing in small groups can be very useful in those day-care centers where there isn't enough budget to hire professional caregivers. Sometimes, just one caregiver along with an assistant have to deal with 40 children that go from 6 months to 3 years old (such as in the case of OGN). Apart from that, some low income families have to leave their children in the school beyond the day-care hours (from 8 in the morning until 5 or 6 in the evening), which makes more difficult for the caregivers to assist the children in a proper way. Getting the parents and volunteers involved in these activities can be a good way to solve this problem.
The number of activities will depend on the number of adults involved. Initially, the activities can be conducted, but the aim is that every child can choose what to do (according to his or her interests), and how to do it (to develop her or his creativity). Some conducted activities might be telling stories and tales, singing songs, playing games of imitation and gesticulation, or playing any kind of game where the children can learn to play together without any aggression. Psycho-motor activities are vitally important during the first years of life, as it exists a great interdependence between motor, emotional a intellectual development. Therefore, we have to include them in our daily routine in such a way that the kids can make their own decisions and explore their possibilities.
The role of the adults should be just to observe, to facilitate and to play with the children, so that the kids can achieve a holistic development in a more calmed, and safe atmosphere. Instructing them in this methodology would help to create that atmosphere, without shouts,pushes and fights.
Who will benefit from this idea and where are they located?
The kids of OGN day-care center in Kathmandu will be directly benefited with this idea, but also the whole educational community, considering that this methodology is prompt for efficiency and efficacy ( better results).
How could you test this idea in a quick and low-cost way right now?
To introduce the idea to the parents, so that they become involved with it. The first step would be to invite them to observe the kids during the day-care hours. In that way, they would be able to understand better how important is to try to do something to improve the actual situation.
After that, to give instruction to the volunteers about how to proceed with this methodology, and finally to put it into practice.
What kind of help would you need to make your idea real?
In order to take this idea into practice, we would need some money to invest in appropriate material. It is always welcome a piece of advice from experienced professionals in teaching.
Is this an idea that you or your organization would like to take forward?
Yes. I am ready and interested in testing this idea and making it real in my community.