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Tools of the Mind is a research-based early childhood program that builds strong foundations for school success in preschool and kindergarten children by promoting their intentional and self-regulated learning. In a series of rigorous experimental trials, Tools of the Mind has been shown to have a significant impact on self-regulation of preschool children. The study also found these gains in self-regulation to be related to scores in child achievement in early literacy and mathematics.
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Desks signify the “old guard” of education where people sat in their seats, listened, maintained compliance, and were forced to stare at the front of the room as an older individual barked information. Desks signify a form of education that created widgets and workers for factories where everyone was expected to perform the same rote task at the same time and finish at the same level of understanding.
Instead, we should be equipping all classrooms with a diverse mix of tables, couches, exercise balls, bar stool tables, and anything else that reminds us of something other than the traditional classroom. Every classroom should have a variety of these items and as many different combinations as possible. Why? Kids spend 6-7 hours a day in a classroom and every, single one looks the same. Same color, same shape, same seats. If not the same, they look pretty damned similar. It forces kids to think the same in every class and stunts any flow of creative juices that might be triggered by a change in environment.
Who’s with me?