I've been reflecting moment to moment on when to step in and when to simply listen and watch children. I've stepped back more than usual as a bit of an end of the year experiment, which has resulted in moments of awe as I re-realize how completely capable children are and there have also been moments where all I can say is "oyyy!" and smile at our reality. one of those "oy" moments happened during outdoor play as children noticed puddles dotting the landscape.
First, children explore with gentleness and the help of nearby twigs.
One child enters the puddle slowly, with caution...
and heavier steps soon follow.
Soon many feet took the plunge, some even stomping in the puddle, sending waves of water up their pant legs. With this I said "what happens when you step in the puddle like that?" As they peered down at their leg I heard a resigned "you get wet." With that a few abandoned the puddle and a few persevered, stomping until their shoes and pants were, well...soaked. The puddle jumping and as we went back in the classroom - a few shoes checked at the door - it was well worth it. I don't think me a year ago would have allowed the puddle insanity but really this is what learning is all about - being curious, getting messy, wishing you had done something just a little bit differently, doing it different the next time, timing how long it takes your pants to dry, and really just having fun.