A scientist at work


Cheyenne, you areP1060442 web a wonderful model for us all with your indomitable determination to explore and make sense of the world !  I have  lately been observing children with a greater respect for the fact that, unlike us “clever” adults, who like to think we have got everything sussed ( ho ho ! ), children come into the world with no prior experience of its spatio-temporal qualities, its curious humans and their communication strategies or for  that matter, the distinction between edible and inedible, yummy and not so  yummy. Every single bit of data has to be researched, explored, filed, rechecked against current working theories and then catalogued until some new experience suggests that we may need to reassess our understanding. It is a miracle and a godsend that children come so devoutly hardwired to undertake this mammoth undertaking.

My sense is that it is far too easy for us to see a child like Cheyenne and just see “cuteness”, and it’s absolutely undeniable that she is being adorably cute.


Story Writing. Co-creating a book with drawings and words.

I wrote this when I was working full time in a centre and I think it might be useful to some people. Imagine the scene: half a dozen or more children between 3- 5 years old  around a table.  Drawing and writing tools are available and premade books,  made of folded and stapled A4 pages. I like to round the corners and sometimes sew the spine with coloured wool instead of stapling but that is just me. All the children are drawing and I am helping a number of children to complete their image and to dictate a page at a time. While they draw the next page, I help the next child. It’s a pretty fluid affair.

Various ethical, professional dilemmas that can arise in this process and here are some of  my thoughts.


Two Blokes with their Beer ? (maybe)

Thankyou, Jaxon V and Jaxon G for so wonderfully illustrating so many aspects of children’s play. The closest thing I can relate it to from my own experience is the period of my life when I attended clown workshops. The similarities are , for me, that there will  be no spoken words but a lot of gestures, body language and eye contact; one will not worry about what one  or whether this is the politically correct thing to do; one will listen closely to one’s own needs and one will also be closely monitoring what is happening with the other person; no one is trying to be nice;  there may be objects to which one becomes unreasonably attached ; and there is an overall attitude of open-minded curiosity and wonder and interest; there is camaraderie but above all, self-protection, which may take rather odd forms. And one is also, of course, free to move away at any point if one loses interest and there is no obligation to say goodbye!