Thinking as making and making as thinking


We have always advocated strongly for a holistic approach to learning in early childhood. It is a place where creativity and problem solving go together - where art and science, nature and maths, literacy and dramatic play are intertwined and combined.  Despite this, one area where we still tend to maintain arbitrary boundaries is around the idea of learning and thinking as something conceptual, cognitive and intellectual rather than as something practical, concrete and material.

This session will explore some contemporary thinking that helps break down this division - reuniting head and hands, ideas and materials, concepts and concrete.  Traditionally we tend to believe that when children create, the idea comes first, followed by the process of making.  What might open up when we reconsider thinking as not something in our heads but something generated through our hands and the materials we work with?  What happens when we start to see thinking as something that comes through the act of ‘making’?  In journeying through these ideas, we can radically reconceptualise the place of woodwork, collage, carpentry, art, construction and sculpture in our programs and children’s lives.  

Learning goals - to:

1. Critically reflect on the role of creativity in children’s learning and development
2. Explore theoretical perspectives around thinking and cognition
3. Identify key strategies to plan and document children’s learning in the arts and construction

Completing Thinking as making and making as thinking contributes one hour of PD that aligns with the NESA (NSW) criteria for Elective PD and addresses:

The Australian Professional Standards for Teachers: APST 1: Know children and how they learn 

The Early Years Learning Framework: Learning Outcomes 2, 4 & 5 

The National Quality Standard: QA: 1


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