kindergarten: saudade do futuro

I hope not to get in trou­ble for post­ing, ver­ba­tim and with min­i­mal com­men­tary, an update we’ve just received from Eliot’s kinder­garten.  I find this fas­ci­nat­ing and, in its way, rather utopi­an:

As you know, we have been exper­i­ment­ing in our room with dif­fer­ent kinds of learn­ing sup­ports for our class­room, such as “wig­gle spots” to sit on, head­phones for qui­eter con­cen­tra­tion, and “pri­vate offices.” Many of the kids seem to have high oral needs right now, so we intro­duced two “chew tools” this week — chewy straws and gum. The gum is all nat­ur­al, no chem­i­cal sweet­en­ers, and sug­ar free (sweet­ened with xyl­i­tol). We will con­tin­ue to sup­ply straws as need­ed as well as chewy snacks at choice time. The gum seems to work bet­ter than the straws and be more hygenic as it does not touch hands or oth­er sur­faces once it is in the mouth.

A need to chew on pen­cils, cloth­ing or hair is a com­mon kinder­garten behav­ior, and pro­vid­ing alter­nate chew­ing expe­ri­ences can help focus and con­cen­tra­tion as well as be relax­ing for kids. How­ev­er, gum is not a choice for all fam­i­lies, so if you would pre­fer that your child not use this chew tool, please let me know.

This is dif­fer­ent from the kinder­garten of mem­o­ry.

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