Work. Bleh.

Our work tray shelf.

(Not that kind of work – the Montessori kind of work.)

I, the one with the terrible stage fright, love to tell stories. I believe, after all these years, I am excited to see what I will learn from a new telling of the story (specifically, what I will learn from the wondering and the comments). On those days when the children wonder out loud and I can hear the gears shifting and the engines moving, I could tell stories all day long.

However, then the response time comes. Ick. If I had not been enlightened by all I’ve learned about Montessori and Godly Play, I would be giving multiple choice exams to the preschoolers to make sure they understood the three basic points of the story. That would be ever so much more organized than what DOES happen: little girls gather and discuss their boyfriends (BOYFRIENDS?). Boys race around using anything as a violent weapon. Sandstorms in the desert box. It happens. No matter how hard we work at it, some days are just like that.

Now, there are excellent days, too. This post ended with a drawing that made that day worthwhile. We’ve captured some other signs of going deeper into the story, too. Two boys – two very active boys – quietly use the lap labyrinth and sand labyrinth.

I hope to write a lot about work in the coming weeks because we (the Godly Play team at our church – the ones who would do a much better job writing this blog because they’re so amazing) hope to amp up the art materials and work materials. We’ve tried a few things to set up the classroom so that the children can find materials to make the response time meaningful (see the watercolor trays set up in the work tray shelf picture?)

Suggestions are always welcome….

This entry was posted in Godly Play, Godly Play Classroom, Godly Play furniture, Materials for Work Time, Montessori. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Work. Bleh.

  1. Storyteller says:

    Those watercolor trays are a wonderful idea!

    Interestingly, although I have had to deal with some craziness and children having trouble settling down to “get ready”, so far this has never really happened during the Response Time (the name we use for Work Time). I am fairly strict about, “We WALK more slowly in this room” (i.e. don’t race around), and on the whole it has been easy to enforce. All of our children go to Finnish preschool or daycare on weekdays, which might make a difference?

    Perhaps, though, if you’re getting good discussion at the Wondering time, maybe it’s ok that the children aren’t always doing deep work afterwards. Maybe they need to let off a little steam or be more superficial as a sort of reaction to opening up in the story time. ???

  2. browniesmoke says:

    Excellent thoughts, Storyteller. I have never made the connection between “good” wondering and “bad” work time (as relates to me, of course).

    I am speaking specifically of older elementary children (3-5th grades) who definitely are not permitted in school to go a little crazy in class. It’s clearly not the children’s fault – any child will push the envelope. I should have stated that better. I mean that we adults are trying to be very intentional with our work offerings so that they have less opportunity to push the envelope!

Leave a Reply