Do no harm…


These are my current reading books, all are open on some page or other. Possibly I shouldn’t read so many books at once .. but there is a definite theme. They are all packed with detail and jargon, both of which make reading them hard for me and they are all of a nature that makes me reflect on my own learning in a way I find difficult as it involves detail, jargon as well as attempting to understand new stuff.

What I have come up with so far is to do no harm and that harm is psychological in nature- how one thinks of oneself as a learner (being the important bit for me with my ‘teacher’ hat on). The brain is an amazing thing and is something that takes maintenance, that learning changes the brain so you shouldn’t think of learning (how, what, when) as being fixed and final but that emotional beliefs about ourselves get in the way. We have to do things that are hard to move forward… that the zone of proximal development is so important.

There are always more questions to ask though. How do you get kids to talk to you about what they find difficult? Do they even know? What does helping them look like?

We have kids with labels, ADHD, Autism etc, (as well as possible victims, bullies etc) come to our holiday programme and mostly they are invisible but then they go back into the world where they have support staff or are in trouble in some way. Does the holiday programme (with our outside, free play, non interventionist ethic) actually help them? Could they, on their own, come to understanding their way of learning is different, harder and that their learning path could be made easier? It’s hard… the process of recognising learning/realising you are different, and then asking for help. How much can we see without actually being in their heads?

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