The Power of Fantasy in Early Learning

The Power of Fantasy in Early Learning

The Power of Fantasy in Early Learning

The Power of Fantasy in Early Learning

Synopsis

The Power of Fantasy in Early Learning is a truly unique book, based around the case study of a class of children, their teacher and a stuffed bear suit. Jenny Tyrrell illustrates the possibilities that an inanimate object can offer the teaching and learning situation. Drawing on her extensive experiences, she shows how the bear became an integral part of the school. Theory and practice are combined to explore teaching issues in the early years including the influence of the bear on the whole school, imaginative development, motivation to read and write and the influence of learning goals in a child's school life in the early years. This is a truly original work which will give heart to teachers everywhere and provide plenty of fresh insight into the debate on the nature of learning.

Excerpt

I am a teacher. Everything I say, everything I do, everything I write, is coloured by my professional beliefs based on who I am, what matters to me and why I think in this way. I believe that the central task of the teacher is to feed the learner's curiosity, to fire and then kindle the imagination, to nurture the self-esteem and to let each learner discover who they are as learners, thus enabling learning to be effective and lasting. I believe that when young children come to school they have a right to enjoy the experience. There should be enough space in our busy schooldays and often over-filled curriculum, for children to have fun, for we learn best at any age those things we enjoy doing. The skill for teachers is to weave this vitally strong thread into the fabric of daily school life in the realisation that it is an essential feature.

I have an overpowering need to tell this story, for this is what it is, the story of an experienced teacher and two groups of uniquely individual children. I write this for anyone who is interested in the way young children assimilate formal learning in institutionalised systems. I hope it will lead the reader to question what we do in the name of education and be open to the suggestion of alternative routes.

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