Friday, September 26, 2014

Quotes from Early Childhood Education Professionals

This quote from Marian Wright Edelman is for both the education professionals and for us to remember as we educate the children.

“No person has the right to rain on your dreams.”

Other quotes attributed to Marian Wright Edelman (hard to choose just one or two!):

“Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it.”

“The future which we hold in trust for our own children will be shaped by our fairness to other people's children.”

“We do not have a money problem in America. We have a values and priorities problem.”

Dr. Rosa Milagros Santos, Dr. Angel Fettig, and Ms. LaShorage Shaffer wrote:

“Early childhood educators know that home is a child’s first learning environment...
By suggesting meaningful, fun, and engaging activities, early educators can play a critical role in supporting families as they support their children’s social-emotional development…
Strong parent involvement is linked to children’s school readiness – academically, socially, and emotionally…
The influence families and teachers have on children’s social-emotional development cannot be understated.”

Santos, R. M., Fettig, A., Shaffer, L. (2012). Helping families connect early literacy with social-emotional development. Young Children. 67(2) 88-93

“I see early childhood education, all education, really as a civil rights issue.”

-Renatta M. Cooper
Program Specialist, Office of Child Care
LA County Chief Administrative Office

Laureate Education, Inc. (2010). The passion for early childhood. Baltimore: Author.

“Teachers have a tremendous influence on their self-identities.”

“The preschool years are critical; they are the first, most fundamental period where children are in fact noticing who they are and are noticing the attitudes and stereotypes and the discomforts.”

-Louise Derman-Sparks
Professor Emeritus, Pacific Oaks College, CA

Laureate Education, Inc. (2010). The passion for early childhood. Baltimore: Author.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Personal Childhood Web:

A mini-narrative about my childhood: I was born in 1955, and my mother stayed at home like most of the mothers from that time. Preschool was unheard of in my small hometown, La Porte, Indiana, although I know my oldest sister did attend a program at the local YMCA. And, so the people who nurtured and cared about me as a child were all family.

My father, Eugene John Hatrak
He had four daughters when it is common knowledge a father often wants at least one son. My father taught us sports and played with us whenever he was home from his factory job. He allowed me to help him do errands around the house. He was utterly patient with me when I wanted to help him. He explained stuff to me. He was so loving and had a great sense of humor. My father was loyal to a fault to Detroit Lions football team although the team was a terrible team. He told me, “I support Detroit Lions because they are underdogs.” That in itself speaks volumes about my father whom I love dearly and who still has influence over how I live my life today by being involved in community activism for the underprivileged Deaf children.

My grandma, Clarice Lorraine Herran (camera shy)
Because I am Deaf, I did not get to play much with neighborhood children who did not learn American Sign Language. When my mother or each of my three sisters were too busy for me who wanted to do something, I would then bike over to my grandmother’s house, unannounced. She was ALWAYS happy to see me and willing to stop whatever she was doing to be with me. We talked a lot, and talked about stuff.
Best part was when my father finished work, he would check to see if my bike was in Grandma’s front yard. If it were, he would stop by and pick me up. Seems insignificant a moment, but I remember those moments vividly.

Linda, Daphne, me, Kay
My Three Sisters:
Because of my enmeshed family, my three sisters are important in my childhood and still influence me in more than one way today.

Daphne: I learned how to cross cultures through my sister who is a hearing child of Deaf adults (CODA). I learned to dance from her. She would occasionally allow me to tag along with her!

Linda: she loved reading and telling stories, mostly to me. She also loved television although she couldn’t understand anything without captions that started in 1988. Never mind that, she used her imagination when telling me what the movie she was watching on TV was all about. On long and boring car trips, she would create oh so imaginative stories! She led me on many adventures as only the youngest sister would be game to.

Kay: we shared a double bed in an extremely small room. That would require a lot of love for her as an older sister to bear with a younger sister! She's always there for me when disaster struck me more than once!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

We're Going on a Bear Hunt

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury

This is one of my favorite children’s books. Rich in vocabulary and family togetherness, the book provides the family with different kind of activities.  Typically, you can sign, read, and/or sing. You can act out the words. The book invites the family to go out and experience nature at its best – except for the bear! Something about the family cowering under the covers is so endearing! It always makes my family giggle at the end.

Artwork and Book Reading

This is my son with his artwork
This is my daughter with her artwork.
One year, Deaf children were invited to show their artwork at an art gallery in Rancho Santa Fe, California. It was a memorable evening for the families. 

In looking for the pictures of artwork to display for my class homework, I came across another picture I thought was relevant to our Early Childhood Studies. In photo below, my daughter signed the book, If You're Happy and You Know It at a Literacy Faire sponsored by Alliance for Language and Literacy for Deaf Children in San Diego.

"A child miseducated is a child lost."

“A child miseducated is a child lost.”
           - John F. Kennedy

That’s what frequently happens to our American Deaf students. The focus of their preschool experiences is too focused on hearing & speech or learning how to talk. Sadly, speech is not equal to language that would also be critically essential for their cognitive and executive function developments. Consequently, they have either delayed or deprived language development.

The classroom for Deaf preschoolers is ideologically driven. I learned from this video, The Passion for Early Childhood, that the child should be focus of our teaching. A good teacher works to accommodate the child's unique needs and strengths, and adapts accordingly if it is not effective.

So, we lose the Deaf child when the child is miseducated.

What a sad double whammy.

Laureate Education, Inc. (2010) The passion for early childhood. Baltimore: Author