One of the loveliest things about starting a brand new classroom is that we are all learning together; we are all appreciated and valued the way we are, and that we all have things to learn and ways to grow.
It’s been beautiful watching our community growing together, learning our routines and rules, and slowly beginning to learn everyone’s personalities and strengths.
One of my favorite ways to teach a lesson is through books, which is why I have so very many. There’s nothing like knowing just the right book to help children navigate a situation.
This week we had some great lessons about asking permission to touch one another. Teaching children to set boundaries for their bodies is one of the foundations of social skills. Once children feel comfortable setting and respecting those boundaries, endless possibilities for play open up. This week our children have been so excited to get to know one another, so there has been a great opportunity for modeling and teaching.
Teachers in the Montessori classroom ask children before we touch them, or if they’re struggling with being safe, we let them know before we hold their hands or pick them up. Similarly, we teach children to ask before they hug or touch each other’s hair or faces, for example.
This week we read, “Don’t Touch My Hair” by Sharee Miller, and it helped the children understand how it feels when people don’t respect our boundaries as well as giving them words to use to be respectful, “Can I touch your hair?”, “Can I give you a hug?”
In just four days, we saw the children pausing before they hugged and touched, and what a beautiful beginning to our little community!