Have you ever thought about this idea that we as parents are our children’s first teachers? And what does that mean for the time we have with our kids early on, especially before they start school? And then, when thinking about schooling… do words like Montessori and Steiner make you anxious and worried you haven’t really thought through all the options available for your child’s education? In this episode, teacher and mum of three Hannah Alexander answers these questions and more.
Hannah has previously been interviewed for Mum Will Know in episode 3, where she shared her family’s experience of spending at least three hours outside every day for an entire year. Hannah spoke in episode three all about the importance of being outdoors for our children’s development and mental health (which research shows is important for adults too). In today’s episode we focus on early childhood learning. Hannah shares that learning starts at conception and that the first 5 years of a child’s life are SO important for their development. Hannah gives us as parents some great tips and encouragement for how we can be supporting and encouraging learning for our children as she talks through topics like toys, play and technology. She also explains the differences between educational approaches like Montessori, Steiner and Reggio Emilio. Here are some of the questions she covers:
- How important is learning in our children’s first few years of life?
- Should we as parents be taking responsibility for teaching our kids? Are we their first teachers?
- What are the differences between Montessori or Steiner schools and the regular preschool down the road?
- What are the benefits and limitations for alternative educational approaches?
- How can we be encouraging education at home?
- What toys would you recommend are essential for learning?
- Shortlist of bare essentials/equipment for at home learning
- How do children learn through play?
- How can we help develop skills in our children to prepare them for school?
- Are educational apps appropriate for children to use before school?
Resources Hannah refers to:
Early Years Learning Framework:
The Case for Make Believe by Susan Linn
Hannah also shares some recommendations of Instagram accounts to follow that are inspiring including:
And if you’re keen to get in contact with Hannah here are her socials:
- Website – http://www.ouryearoutdoors.com/
- Subscriber newsletter - https://ouryearoutdoors.ck.page/8287130b5d
Connect with me on IG or FB @mumwillknow and let me know what you’ve thought of the episode!
Photo by @bonniemaherphotography