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Character Counts in Early Childhood

  • 1.  Character Counts in Early Childhood

    Posted 28 days ago
    ​My three and four year old classrooms are introducing Character Counts to the children. They are looking for some ideas/activities to help the children begin to understand "trust". I know it is a difficult concept for them. We would welcome any ideas.

    Thank you!

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    Donna Kennebeck
    Supervisor
    UnityPoint Health
    Des Moines IA
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  • 2.  RE: Character Counts in Early Childhood

    Posted 27 days ago
    Donna, you may be getting ahead of child development, which will be frustrating and could be damaging.

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    Jack Wright
    Child Development Consultant
    Success With Children
    St Ignatius MT
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  • 3.  RE: Character Counts in Early Childhood

    Posted 26 days ago
    The concept of trust may be difficult for children to explain with words, but we hope they are experiencing trust in the context of their relationships every day. Building trust is the very first developmental challenge, according to Erik Erikson. I don't know much about the Character Counts curriculum but I believe it is the responsibility of the adults to build trusting relationships with children by providing consistent and caring routines and interactions. If you are required to create activities with children that are related to the concept of trust, I suggest reading and discussing picture book stories that demonstrate trust, such as Owl Babies by Martin Wadell, in which the mother owl returns to the nest and says, "What's all the fuss? You knew I'd come back."

    Ann Gadzikowski

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    Ann Gadzikowski
    Director of Early Learning
    Encyclopedia Britannica
    Evanston IL
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  • 4.  RE: Character Counts in Early Childhood

    Posted 26 days ago
    Ann, I think Erickson was talking about building trust by experiencing trust not understanding the concept. Experiencing trust, of course, makes learning trust easier when the child is older. Building trust is done with attention, attunement, and synchronous relationship: the core elements of developing secure attachment. Secure attachment makes learning everything easier. Direct training of the trust concept I fear is like the teaching method that is named interruptive by researchers in contrast to synchronous.

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    Jack Wright
    Child Development Consultant
    Success With Children
    St Ignatius MT
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