When we know better – WE DO BETTER. – Maya Angelou

Young children learn new vocabulary at light speed! The learning is dependent on the range of words they are exposed to.  How do teachers facilitate building vocabulary with very young children? A number of strategies can be employed.  We know that conversation rich environments are vital to cognitive development.  We know that asking good questions can lead to deeper learning.  We know that young children listen to adults for clues to pronunciation, tone, and usage.  Now we know better so we can do better!

“When the child comes to the doorstep of school, we welcome all of him and everything he brings.”  Vea Vecchi

The inspiring words from Vea Vecchi, educator in Reggio Emilia, Italy guide our work at The Preschool each and every day.  Think about what that quote is really saying!  Words are important. When we welcome a child  each day, what do we say?  How do we say it? What tone do we use? What body language is present ? Have you thought about your practice of welcoming children to your school, your classrooms?

Joy, happiness, capabilities, curiosity, wisdom, and caring are easy to welcome!  But what about worries, fears, frustration, hunger, limitations, anger, and tiredness… how do we welcome these? Spend some time reflecting on this quote.  Have a discussion.

With our words, we convey our values and expectations about children, which, in turn, influence children’s beliefs and expectations about themselves. Our words and tone of voice have a profound effect on children. By tuning in to the language we use, day in and day out, we can truly welcome the child, “…all of him and everything he brings.”