Snippet Story: The Crumbs Kindergarten (2021)
What wonders had you formulated in your SNIP?
We find that the older preschoolers are good at playing and that they enjoy playing, especially the games they create themselves. We also find that the input for these games often comes from movies with well-known characters and worlds, and merchandise is a big part of the children's shared play universe, which means that their games can sometimes become monotonous. At the same time, we also find that children are very inquisitive and curious, but that they need new inputs. We are therefore particularly interested in how we can support the children's curiosity and thirst for knowledge by developing new learning spaces that support the children's experimental and exploratory play. Especially in relation to nature, outdoor life, history and more.
We therefore have the following questions
- How do we become more experimental in our pedagogical approach, especially in the expat community?
- How can our experimental approach be seen in the physical space of the relocation?
- How can we communicate new knowledge to children in a captivating way?
- How can we make use of storytelling in pedagogical work?
- How can children gain inspiration and input through visits to the Copenhagen City Museum and possibly be seen in children's play?
- How can we adults lead the way as role models for creativity, storytelling, immersion, play and community - education?
How has the process gone in relation to your wondering?
How have you approached the process?
The crumbs are interested in museum work and how this can be transferred to everyday life in the institution. They want to establish a physical 'museum/exhibition space' in their relocation area. The museum introduces both educators and children from the crumbs to the work at the museum and to the exhibitions and will through the project collaborate with the institution to investigate how they can establish a museum in the kindergarten. The project is a long-term project.
Throughout the project, we will work with the following focus points:
1. what is a museum
2. Children's collections
a. Collections and stories.
3. design and establish a museum in the relocated part of the Crumbs.
4. anchoring the work with collections, exhibitions and museums in the institution's daily life.
The focus points are based on the museum's daily activities and museum work, but also on the idea of seeing children as collectors and curators of their own collections. The museum will be the guiding part of focus points 1 and 2, while the institution is the guiding part of focus points 3 and 4.
Children's meeting: At the Crumbs
Cecilie (museum curator) visits the children's group in the crumbs. The aim of the meeting is to introduce the curator and the children's group to each other. The meeting should not be organized. But the children can greet Cecilie, tell about themselves, their kindergarten and their everyday life. Cecilie can talk about herself and the museum.
Ann-britt (educator) is the coordinator.
Course 1: Let's play a museum in the kindergarten
- Cecilie comes and does a course about 'museum in my kindergarten'. For the course, we research and talk about old objects that Cecilie brings with her. Then we talk about the kindergarten, and the children find things from the kindergarten that they make an exhibition with.
- Cecilie is the coordinator: in charge of the entire process, brings materials, etc. The educators contribute along the way.
- Preparation: We need a place in the institution where we can create a small temporary museum/exhibition. This could be on a windowsill or shelf or on a table.
- The active part of the session lasts approximately 1-1.5 hours. The rest of the time can be spent on conversation and reflection.
Course 2: Field trip to the museum
- The children's group visits the Copenhagen Museum and explores the exhibitions with Cecilie. We will investigate what the museum looks like. What objects are there, how are they displayed, what stories are told and what do the children find beautiful and exciting?
- Cecilie is the coordinator: in charge of the entire process, planning and organizing.
- Preparation: The crumbs bring packed lunches so they can have lunch after the active part of the program.
- The active part of the session lasts approximately 1-1.5 hours. The rest of the time can be spent on conversation and reflection while the children eat their lunch.
Reflection on Process 1 and 2:
11 of the older kindergarten children have participated in the program.
The children have been quick to say that the process is boring, but there is a discrepancy between what happens and what they say. The children are involved in the process, but when evaluated, they say that it has been boring. This evaluation may indicate that they want to be the center of attention and/or that even though there was plenty of play at the museum, the children may not think it was play.
The biggest success of the programs is that the children were involved all the way and were open to the fact that an experience was going to happen. For Cecilie, it has been a new experience to re-direct the children, follow them around the exhibition and see what happens in the spaces in between. In the process, the children have been given the opportunity to experience together with their friends, and in this way, the group strengthens its unity and being able to make room for each other. Both factors that this group is challenged in.
The challenges after the first two times are the time aspect in relation to talking to the children about what we are going to do and what they mean when they say it's boring. In addition, it is important that the adults divide the roles between them so that there is an opportunity to be exploratory with the children while the other educator can "keep an eye out".
We will continue to work with a museum in the outbuilding, where there is a room for a shop/ticket sales, laboratory, storytelling cave.
Course 3: Collections and stories at the Crumbs
- We continue to work on the focus point of children's collections and stories. We can continue to look at the children's own collections, from their wardrobes, drawers, jacket pockets or from home. At the same time, we continue to work on how we can create shared stories about the objects.
- The educators are the coordinators and are responsible for planning and content. Cecilie is a sparring partner.
Reflection on Course 3:
Two groups with objects and storytelling. The children brought a special item that they could do without. The children had to tell why that particular item? The educators and Cecilie helped weave the story together. What could happen next? Some children found it difficult to write poetry within this framework. Very adult-controlled. The educators drew while the children told - dialogical drawing.
In the story: treasure, key, tail-less dinosaur. 5-6 children per story that became an exhibition in a display case with drawing.
Cecilie walked between the two groups. It was nice to have two adults. She could pick up and support the process when AB was in the process of drawing etc. The process was a kind of shared brain/thought. The children fell in and out, got ideas together, created together, made room for others.
The adults: improvisation, presence, attention to various children
How have the children's perspectives been expressed?
Especially in the third course, the children's perspectives were expressed because they had to choose and bring an item to be used in the story. However, a lot of adult guidance was needed in the construction of the story because it was difficult for the children to write poetry within the given framework.
What changes have you experienced and recorded in your snap stories?
Do the children play different games and with different people than they usually do?
Storytelling with objects suggests the following:
- Listening to others
- Create something together
- Practicing storytelling
Do educational staff act differently than they did before?
In the meeting with Cecilie, AB has become more aware of his pedagogical experience. A good story, inspiration, meeting something different. A new view on museums
Educators wear many hats at the same time - how do you indulge in play? Can we meet that desire by being clearer about agreeing our roles?
How has your collaboration been?
How will you use the lessons learned in your future work?
If we are to anchor it in the group, it is an important point that we now continue working with the same group of children. It's great to create curiosity about museums among the children. It will be exciting to see what it does for the process that we are not starting over with a new group.
We continue to work with archaeology and tie in science education as well. The crumbs would like inspiration to work with this. Especially up in the outlier.
Curious about the structure around play. Prerequisites for play to occur. The educator's professionalism and tasks are very large and broad. This plays a role in how the educator can devote themselves to play. How is this possible? How do we understand the pedagogical task and does it hinder the pedagogical task if the educator devotes 100 percent to play?
What happens among the educators internally if an educator devotes themselves 100 percent to play. Is there time for it, is there room for it? Is it looked down upon, and can you devote yourself 100 percent if you have the internship in mind? Perhaps you can appoint a "Play Guard": i.e. an educator who, at a specific and limited time, is designated among colleagues to be the one who can devote themselves to playing with the children.