We share evidence-based K-12 learning strategies that empower you to improve education.
I guess the question is one of definitions, and socializations is part of academics, as is language, proper behaviors, knowing one's letter and colors. I think we have created a false choice too often. I think these two are more linked. We accept both socialization and skills development, and academics are linked. I don't want "drill and kill" for any students and maybe we should do a better job of teaching cooperative learning skills to middle-schoolers. And if HS isn't social learning, what is?
Preschools should be focused on developing children's socialization skills. Students need to learn how to get along with others and learn how to talk it out when they have a difference of opinion.
The environment in preschool should enable students to play, explore, and discover. It is a time for students to experiment, use their imagination, and develop creativity. It should be a time that is rich with experiences (in class and field trips) so children begin to develop a concept of the world around them and a love of learning.
Although the focus is on socialization, preschools should help students develop basic skills that they will need in kindergarten, e.g. know how to recognize and write their name, able to sit quietly for a period of time, to be quiet when the teacher is talking, how to listen and follow brief directions.
Preschoolers are only 2-5 years old, they're just getting started in their lives. If preschoolers don't have opportunities to play, experiment, and develop their socialization skills in preschool, when will they ever have the opportunity?
Good socialization skills are key to being successful in school, and eventually, out in the working world.
I think instead of saying what we will do TO?FOR? the child in preschool, we should be thinking about where the child is developmentally as an individual.
So, none of the answers really address that. Our preschool should allow the students to grow in the areas that they are ready to grow in, whether that be academic or social without pushing to be ready for the "next" grade level.
Why should this be a choice? Brain research has been telling us for years (what instinctively good teachers already know) that academics are most effectively learned when positive social engagement also is taking place.
Young children (and in reality all of us) learn best when we feel comfortable with the learning environment, have opportunities to problem-solve and apply new learning to real-life materials and situations.
As Scotland author Pat Kane wrote in his book of the same name, the more accurate term for 21st Century application should be "the play ethic" as opposed to the old work- ethic phrase. Just as children learn through play, so do we all.
Young children should be allowed to progress at their rate of maturation. The gross and fine muscles are just beginning to develop at this stage. If we allow these young children to develop appropriately we would have less children frustrated and classified.