Ohhhh...snoooore....this philosophy bit is driving me crazy. Waldorf, Montessori, Reggio...etc. etc. an amalgam of all, parts pulled from some. Uggh. I'm pretty sure our parents did not fret so much over our schooling.
Right now I have D enrolled in a "nature" based preschool. Truthfully, what it looks like to me is a glorified day care. There are three "teachers" but are they really teaching? Or are they just babysitting? I guess just their mere presence and interaction allows for some sort of teaching. What they DO do, however, is engage in non-violent communication. And isn't it nice that they have just a couple rambunctious boys that engage in some random acts of violence so these teachers can display their talents.
Yeah, one of the boys walked up to another boy one day and started pushing his head into the side of the sandbox. Then ran away, came back and push this poor boy over. Excuuuse me, but that is just not acceptable. Oh, the teachers tried to get said bully over to "talk things through"...yeah..I don't know how effective they were. Anyhow, the way I try to deflect this bullying tendency (since D won't let me leave her site so I have to sit around with her all morning) is to laugh off any attempts at bullyism. For instance, I saw one of those boys coming over to D and kind of staring her down, pushing his body into her. I just said very sing-songy - "C, what are you doing over there? Are you staring D down?" And laughing. Then he laughed and D laughed so she wasn't intimidated. And today, another boy kept coming over roaring so I said, "What are you?" He replied, "A Bear!" So I said to D, "Then, D, you are a tree. Bears don't attack trees..." I had her put her arms up like a tree. The boy says, "well, they climb trees..." I replied, "yes, but this tree looks too small to climb. She must be a bush."
And that was the end of that game!
Anyhoooo...although I feel like D probably prefers a more structured environment (or maybe that's just me). At the very least I feel like she gravitates towards a more structured environment I think I'm going to stick to this "free play", naturistic environment to help her step out of her box. Plus, G and I also wonder if we may be doing D a disservice if we were to pull her out of this school now and put her into another one. Very confusing so we'll stick with this for a year. Then we'll see.
Tiring. Very tiring.