October, 2012

Pattern Language: Monkey Bars for Young Minds

Before young children begin to think with language, they naturally think in pictures and sound and movement. They are voracious learners! By the age of three or four, most all children have a deep foundation of sensory knowings — the sounds of the mother’s voice will all it’s meanings, from comfort to annoyance, from pride to pleasure — the exact intonation of her laugh. These knowings extend to all the close members of the child’s Read More →

“Fish gotta swim…birds gotta fly…”

When my daughter was very young, I looked for books to read with her that, not only she would like, but that I would not mind reading to her 200 or more times. One of my favorite authors became Leo Lionni. His stories and lovely illustrations always have a deeper message as well. One of my favorite books of his is called, Fish Is Fish. In this tale, a small fish and tadpole are friends Read More →

Thinking with the Senses

When you first glace at this phrase it can seem just wrong. We’ve grown up with the idea that thinking is only a thing that only happens in the brain. And that it happens in this little brain-based office whose address is on the “left bank.” It’s where real concentration happens most often, real thinking. And it has office hours that roughly conform to schooldays. After office hours, we take a little boat across the Read More →

What Does It Mean to Be Smart Now?

Imagine a world where people with the most hair were considered the smartest. Imagine further: Instead of learning the 3R’s in school, children were taught to run track. Children born with the most hair were given the “inside track” and encouraged to run as fast as they possibly could. Children with the least hair were expected to walk backward slowly on the outside track. Everyone else was expected to walk around the track in the Read More →

New Eyes

Sometimes we’ve heard from moms who’ve glanced through The Missing Alphabet, “I can’t imagine adding one more thing to do in my day – this looks like so much more we’d have to do!” In truth, “teaching” the missing alphabet to your children is more a matter of perspective and use of language. Yes, the book is full of fun activities and things to do together, and things to set up for your child to Read More →