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Seeds of Learning
September 29, 2020
For the child…it is not half so important to know as to feel. If facts are the seeds that later produce knowledge and wisdom, then the emotions and the impressions of the senses are the fertile soil in which the seeds must grow.
-Rachel Carson

A section in the book, Heart-Centered Teaching Inspired by Nature: Using Nature’s Wisdom to Bring More Joy and Effectiveness to Our Work with Children references the quote above:

“Heart-centered teaching is about so much more than helping children learn facts. I love Rachel Carson’s analogy. If we think of facts as the seeds of future wisdom, then it is the educator’s job to provide optimal conditions for healthy growth. The perfect growing conditions happen when each child is given the emotional support he or she needs – the emotional equivalent of sunshine, rain, and nutrient-rich soil that is just right for his or her particular seeds.”

Nancy Carlsson-Paige, in her article, “Reclaiming Play: Helping Children Learn and Thrive in School,” (which is part of the Exchange Essentials article collection, Advocating for Play), wrote:

“Child development theorists, researchers, and educators have long known that play is one of children's most valuable resources, vital to their social, emotional, and cognitive growth. Through play children make sense of the world around them and work through new experiences, ideas, and feelings. But in recent years, a host of social forces and trends — the influence of media, commercialism, fast-paced family life, academic pressures in schools — have been eroding healthy play, robbing children of this valuable resource for optimal growth and learning.” Now, more than ever, children need to be able to learn in the emotionally supportive environment that play provides.

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