Saturday, November 9, 2013

"Take your Grade 9 to work day"

On November 6th,, over 250,000 Grade nine students across Canada participated on the 19th annual "Bring your kids to work day" - a real world reality check I guess?  Poor David didn't have the best options - stay at school with his Dad and do....school or come with me......neither of the choices are in what he currently thinks his career options might be but we resolved it could be a good learning day anyway. 

Here is what he reflected on after his day at work with me........

On Wednesday I went to work with my mom. I started the day by taking minutes at my moms meeting at UBC. I learnt there the struggles of trying to coordinate a meeting and keeping it moving swiftly. During the meeting people moved back and forth between topics and it got hard to follow at times but I noticed my mom pushing the meeting on and not letting them get too off track and keeping on the right track. 

We then went to work where I was working on the floor at her childcare centre with the 3-5 year olds. 

It was very interesting to see which kids were willing to come right up to me and say hi whereas others took a bit before they came over and said hi. It was interesting that because I had been introduced by their leaders that they trusted me almost immediately. 

With the kids they were all really bouncy and happy so we put on some music and we followed a CD's actions which showed me how willing the kids were to do anything they were told especially if a leader showed them how to do it. 

When we went outside the kids immediately took the opportunity to prod me and hold me down which I found interesting because it appeared that they wanted to control me so that I did what they wanted. They then all started to argue over what I should do and who I should play with, which made me wonder why they so want to play with someone new instead of do what they normally do? It might be because I was involved with their play more than other people?

We then moved inside and straight to circle time which made me think, was I one of those kids that shouted out their answer and then if we were told to be quiet and put our hand up was I the kid that shouted out by answer if the teacher made eye contact with me even if for just half a second. 

The answer, probably, but I now realize how annoying that must have been for the teacher. It also shows that sometimes things just don't get done like in circle we just ran out of time to do the actual lesson because it took to much time to get everything else done. 

When I went for my lunch break with my mom we went to the new sandwich store smokehouse sandwich co. I had the pulled pork (it was great – I recommend it) but while I was there my mom was complimenting them and being super positive and she told me that "encouragement is free" which is a great thing to think about and will be something that I will put into practice.
  


When I returned it was nap time and two of the teachers were in the nap room rubbing kids backs to help put them to sleep. I on the other hand was in the main room where kids that didn't want to sleep got to have quiet time (which would have been me) but it was good to see that kids can still entertain themselves without help or advice. I got to set up some activities for after nap time so I decided to put playdoh and construction straws out because I remember as a kid loving both of those things. It was also a great opportunity to see the kids imagination come out, as they built with straws especially as they put them together in new and different ways and they described to me what it was.


 As we went back outside I thought about how great it was that we were going outside so much because often kids my age sit inside on devices all day (I am guilty of this – on occasion). It made me smile knowing that the kids of the next generation are being taught well (hopefully they stay this way).

I have a new understanding of how much energy it takes to work with young children and how much you have to listen and negotiate all day long - there is no "downtime".

Then I helped my Mom doing the groceries for dinner on the the way home which I guess is typical for many working Mom's even when they are tired.


So for me "take your kid to work day" showed me just how hard the working life can be and it gave me a new respect for teachers and early childhood educators. I guess I am really just happy that I still get to live a life that is simple and scheduled and that I don't have to worry about all the little  and big things on a day to day basis....... just yet.

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