Learning Stories Create Connections
Learning Stories (explained here) enrich your experience as a teacher in profound ways. They help you:
- Understand and connect to children
- Get closer to families
- Save time on data collection
Here is how teaching practice and attitude to teaching can change with Learning Stories.
Better teaching decisions
Nothing clarifies thinking like writing. Taking time to collect your thoughts, to reflect and write about children is precious – not as a class, but as individuals on unique journeys. Learning Stories are authentic assessment.
The Learning Story template helps you focus on what really matters for each child, and where the best opportunities lie to make a real difference. Use those insights to individualize your teaching, for the good of each child.
Get closer to families
Each story is a celebration of learning and a gift to families, a keepsake they will treasure. More than that though, stories are conversation starters. The context, insights and heart you share in a story is a whole different dimension of family communication to a checklist. It cries out for a family response, often providing invaluable feedback that informs your teaching. It’s sharing that becomes addictive!
Connect to children
Writing to a child naturally draws you closer to the child. Print your stories in Educa and read them to each child. It’s a special time for you and the child, and it can be enlightening for you. from a child’s reaction to a story and for children, who see themselves more clearly as learners.
Share your teaching and philosophy
Learning Stories provide a blank canvas where teachers can describe the events and teaching that lead up to the story moment. It helps a group of teachers share ideas, and lets families know this is not baby-sitting, it’s intentional early childhood education.
Less Time on Data Collection
One story generally links to 8-10 different DRDP or ELOF measures. In a group story, individualize linking by child, and that number multiplies. 3-4 individual Learning Stories and 3-4 group stories in a rating period should almost fully pre-populate your Ratings checklist. Tick the few remaining measures, done!
Here is a PDF of this post.
Getting Started with Learning Stories
Educa is learning story software designed to bring these benefits to the children, families and teachers at your site.
Families want to hear stories with a teacher’s voice – your personality, your style. And so if you have a stream of consciousness approach to writing, so be it. That’s what families want.
If you are not comfortable writing, start out with a short story and a few pictures. Families what to hear any insights or observations you have about their child, in any format.
And once you start writing and getting family feedback, it can become addictive in a hurry!
Now, get started!