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Valuing Children’s Right to Time

by Angela Fowler and Rachel Giannini
July/August 2013
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Article Link: http://www.childcareexchange.com/article/valuing-childrens-right-to-time/5021278/

With the goal being to get children ready for evermore academically ­rigorous elementary schools, young children are being forced into more and more developmentally inappropriate learning environments. This pushed down curriculum has brought more standardization and more assessment to young children at increasingly younger ages. Because of this many early childhood programs have become a place of conformity with little time for children to learn how to self-regulate and become part of a group on their own terms.

Many teachers would agree pushed down curriculum is robbing children of their basic rights by rushing them to complete tasks and limiting time to:
learn through play, time to be explorers, and time to play outside. Because of this push to ‘get children ready’ we are also rushing their social-emotional development. Many children take much longer to explore being part of a group, need more time to get comfortable in their environment, and may need more alone time; but too often these students are simply labeled as problem children, ADD, ADHD, or learning delayed because they can’t keep up with the rushed pace.

In the day to day, however, with dedicated teachers who find ways to respect children’s rights, we find hope. ...

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