The latest news on this change — carefully culled from the world wide web by our change agents. They do the surfing, so you don't have to!
A unique teaching method in Germany has made its way to Portland, OR. Waldkindergarten, or “forest kindergarten” has been around in Germany for some time—there are approximately 700 across the country. Moms drop off their tots each day in a park, rather than a schoolroom, to learn.
Portland’s Mother Earth kindergarten is based on its German counterpart, with 5-year olds singing, learning about nature and playing in the woods. While some studies in Germany have suggested that children attending these schools may lag in writing skills and don’t know their colors or shapes as well, proponents of the movement here in the U.S. see it as an opportunity to let kids be kids. With the No Child Left Behind Law, teachers and parents alike are feeling pressure to make academics a top priority, and kids are burnt out early. They say giving children an opportunity outside the classroom is an antidote to all the striving.
We’re sure Aristotle and Thoreau would be proud. Would you want your child to learn in such an environment? [Wall Street Journal]