I remember my visit to The Acorn School of Early Childhood Development with great affection, the warmth and enthusiasm of Debbie, my guide around the setting, and everyone I met there ensured that this was not just a setting that was thinking about how the environment can meet the needs of the children, but also how they themselves need to be warm, loving and enthusiastic... the living part of the setting - the heart and soul.
Sometimes when we see many of these beautiful settings it can be rather intimidating/overwhelming - how can we make out setting look THAT beautuful - and how does it look when it is being USED, does everything EVER look messy?
Sometimes I have to admit I have felt that visiting other families, especially when my twins were babies and a group of 10 mothers met at the clinic and became a group to support each other (the clinic arranges this) - I would go to their immaculately designed and kept homes and wondered how it could look so perfect when my home seemed to be in a permanant state of clean, lived-in chaos compared?
This is, I have to admit, a little bit how I think about about some of these beautifully designed preschools - of course its easier to make it look amazing when you don't have the children in the middle of it playing there... but still... where is the time?
What I saw at The Acorn School is that it was a setting that was PLAYED in, LOVED and that everything had its place but that there was also the room for the children to influence this too. It felt like a setting where the children and the adults created their setting TOGETHER, rather than a setting created FOR the children.
Oh and the enthusiasm and energy - have a mentioned that already? Well let me put it this way, whenever I think of this school I smile... I can't help it, a big smille spreads across my face... I mean I am sitting here right now with a big smile as I write this!
here come some photos...
|I love love love pestle and mortars - the potential for imagination and experimentation is just enormous. I also like the tree stump table.|
And a small film to share the happiness of Acorn School