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Explicit Presentations in the Settled Classroom
May 16, 2022
The high value put upon every minute of time, the idea of hurry-hurry as the most important objective of living, is unquestionably the most dangerous enemy of joy.
-Herman Hesse, 1877-1962, German author

"Helping children see and experience the entire cycle of an activity or material helps them internalize how to use a material for their own pursuits and projects, take care of materials, and feel a sense of competence with materials—even ownership of them," write Ponte and Kuh in Complementary Curriculum Approach: Transform Your Classroom Through Intentional Teaching.

As one of the four strands of the Complementary Curriculum Approach, explicit presentations are informed by the work of Maria Montessori, and refer to the practice of "modeling everyday routines, activities, and the use of classroom materials, through descriptive language and non-verbal cues. It happens in small moments, such as when a teacher shows a child the process of how to care for and use a toy or material." It also forms the basis of planned presentations for the whole class or smaller groups.

Connecting explicit presentation to mindfulness, as Ponte and Kuh do, one feels the hectic pace of the classroom slowing down and hears Ponte and Kuh’s mantra, "take it out and put it away," as calmly integral to each activity, offering children a sense of "agency, an important aspect of development that leads to self-directed learning and discovery."

Ponte and Kuh will share more about the Complementary Curriculum Approach in a free ECI Webinar on May 25.

New Book Now Available!

Complementary Curriculum Approach
Transform Your Practice Through Intentional Teaching

The Complementary Curriculum Approach invites teachers to support children’s play and cultivate classroom environments with rich, interesting learning experiences at the core. Four strategic and powerful teaching intentions are presented. The goal is that teachers will invigorate their practice and enhance their own time and energy by using these fresh, interrelated tools.


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