Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Early education class emphasizes fun, interactive approach to learning

Early childhood education students are discovering how to make learning more fun and engaging in faculty member Jamie Harmount’s “Play and Creativity” class this semester.

“This class is designed to help future teachers become more creative in developing learning environments in their own classrooms,” Harmount said. ‘”It is important that our students know how to make learning a more dynamic experience for children. Learning can be fun, and elementary students will react more positively in this type of environment.”

As part of the class, the OU-C students designed and developed a display outside of their classroom in the Child Development Center that emphasizes words that describe a fun, interactive learning environment as well as a ‘student’ and backpack filled with elements related to enjoyable, creative learning.

“The display, as well as the class, reminds me of kids in my family,” said student Logan Rhymer, a Circleville High School graduate. “This class has helped me develop my own creativity and opened my eyes to different ways of teaching. Children at a young age learn best through play, and I see the effectiveness of this type of hands-on learning experience.”

Classmate Rebecca Wiseman of Richmond Dale said, “I like the backpack concept of the display since it represents the different learning styles that kids have. This class has allowed me to think outside of the box and has given me different ideas about teaching. It will definitely make me a better teacher when I have my classroom.  This class has made learning fun for me, and I want to include that approach in my own teaching.”

The practical implications of the class resonate with the future educators.

Student Madie Arledge said, "Learning how to use our creative thinking and understanding the different ways a child things has been especially valuable. This class will, in turn, make me a  better teacher by giving me a better understanding that play is a big part of the creative process and how children learn."

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