The school psychiatrist said it's not just us. Other schools she works in are experiencing the same thing.
"Shut up" I said. No one has it like us.
"Oh but yes, they do." she says.
My mind immediately starts thinking back to 5 years plus or minus 40 weeks ago. What world event was going on that caused people to shag, and then bring a child into a world where the environment was so stressful that might have caused this?
She immediately said, "it's the lack of play, don't you think?"
Hmmmmm. Yep, I can see that.
I've only been teaching kindergarten for 5 years. In those 5 years alone I have seen the elimination of nap time, a decrease in play within the classroom, a decrease in free play outside, and in turn an increase in structured time like Reading Workshop, Writing Workshop, and Math Workshop. I am testing more this year than last. Last year I tested more than the previous. We talk about common assessment (TESTS), results (TESTS), and remediation for kids based on those assessments (PREP FOR FUTURE TESTS).
I like the structure of all the workshops because I am a structured person. That doesn't mean it's the best for 5 year olds. I do think our day lacks play, and while I do try to make centers in the workshops fun and hands-on, it's certainly not play.
Is this our fault? Are we creating these little runners, biters, and screamers?
But what does a classroom teacher do? Defy the rules and close the door?
Something to chew on, no?