Infants are natural observers. They learn through observing the world around them and exploring it with all of their senses. They observe the adults around them, the environment, the materials, and especially their peers.
When you have multi-aged children in one program it opens up the opportunity for a wonderful thing to happen, children teaching children. We have a wide range of infant ages in our program here at St James and we often see the younger children observing, and learning from the other children.
This morning M, who is one of our younger Infants, was exploring the buckles on the chair. She was working to control the buckles with her fine motor skills, she was working on coordinating both sides as she was developing her hand eye coordination, and she was working on her problem solving and critical thinking skills as she worked to figure out how they fit.
N, who is one of our older children, has already mastered these skills of buckling buckles. She saw M working on this and went over and sat beside her. N began buckling both sides into the connecting piece. The entire time, M was observing her with intensity. She watched as N coordinated her movements to hold the buckle, and place the two pieces on either side.
M then went back to work on her own buckles. As she watched N pick up the middle piece, she also picked up the middle piece. As she watched N pick up the side piece she also picked up the side piece. As she watched N put the two together, she also worked at putting the two together.
What a wonderful moment to display how powerful and capable children are with teaching and influencing each other to explore and learn together. Also, what an amazing moment for both M and N to display the relationship between each other without any words.
Lauren Sutton RECE, AECEO,C. Rachelle Minthorn RECE, RT Elissa Hall RECE