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Respecting the Wisdom of Children
March 15, 2019
Clinging to the past is the problem. Embracing change is the answer.
-Gloria Steinem
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Ruth Wilson, writing in the book Art of Leadership: Cultivating an Early Childhood Curriculum, encourages educators to recognize and respect the wisdom of children. One way to do this, she writes, is to ask “wondering questions.” As she explains:

“Wondering questions can be used to stimulate reflection and sharing related to many different topics and experiences…For example, on Valentine’s Day in the midst of sharing ‘love notes,’ one teacher invited reflection and sharing by saying, ‘I wonder what love really is.’ The children’s responses were amazing. According to one child, love is when Grandpa rubs Grandma’s feet – even when his fingers hurt. Another child suggested that love is when you share something that you really want to keep. It’s important to recognize that ‘wondering’ questions should come from the children, as well as from the teacher. Keep in mind, as well, that ‘wondering’ questions don’t always require an answer. Wisdom, in both children and adults – is often expressed as much in the questions as in the answers.”





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Cultivating Curriculum
in Early Childhood Organizations

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Comments (3)

Displaying All 3 Comments
Talmage Steele · March 15, 2019
Talk to Me Mama
Chicago, IL, United States


Listening to children's thoughts on important topics has become more fascinating to me as I grow older (I'm 75). Because their enunciation is imperfect and they take time to think before they talk, it is hard in a busy classroom to take the time to hear a child out. But it is one of the most enjoyable things an adult can do. Thank you Ruth Wilson for spreading the word. See my book "The Gift of Words: How Do Children Learn to Talk?"

Talmage Steele · March 15, 2019
Talk to Me Mama
Chicago, IL, United States


Listening to children's thoughts on important topics has become more fascinating to me as I grow older (I'm 75). Because their enunciation is imperfect and they take time to think before they talk, it is hard in a busy classroom to take the time to hear a child out. But it is one of the most enjoyable things an adult can do. Thank you Ruth Wilson for spreading the word. See my book "The Gift of Words: How Do Children Learn to Talk?"

Talmage Steele · March 15, 2019
Talk to Me Mama
Chicago, IL, United States


Listening to children's thoughts on important topics has become more fascinating to me as I grow older (I'm 75). Because their enunciation is imperfect and they take time to think before they talk, it is hard in a busy classroom to take the time to hear a child out. But it is one of the most enjoyable things an adult can do. Thank you Ruth Wilson for spreading the word. See my book "The Gift of Words: How Do Children Learn to Talk?"



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