Posted on September 29, 2017
Reflection drives learning.
Reflection does not just happen at the end of an inquiry or only for our portfolios. Rather, the children are reflecting at every point in their learning journey. We are in the beginning stages of a learning journey; gathering experiences, sharing thoughts and questions, formulating opinions. We are creating and collecting "sparks" from provocations. Along the way, the children are reflecting on the learning that is unfolding. These reflections are a response to the children's experiences, yet they are so much more than that. The children's reflections serve as a guide for their learning, dictate directions on their learning paths, spark new questions, and create new provocations. Reflections are not always the conclusion of thought but can also be a catalyst that leads to more learning.
After the opportunity to share with the group about the meaning and origin of their names, the children pondered the role that names play in their identity. Many questions arose such as: Does your name fit you? Do you become your name or is your name you? Do you like your name?
The children shared the following insight in their reflections:
My name means truth, reason, and beauty. One of my names also means holy spirit. I feel like my heart is spirit to me, the spirit in my body. I have good spirit in my heart. My heart is beauty because it has a lot of love in it.
I like my name because it is a perfect name for me. I never give up on something.
I like my name because in one language it means, "to soar and to to fly" and in another language it means, "great and excellent". My name fits me because what it means is what I am. For example, the great and excellent, I AM great and excellent. I think I am great because I can read good.
I like my name because it is a cultural.
My last name is the same as my family's name. It makes me feel calm because I can tell who is my family, which is my real family. I like my name because it's like my heart choosed my name. My name is like my heart. My mom and dad chose my name from their heart, it is special to them and so it is special to me.
These reflections of student learning and their learning process are small snippets that will piece together and continue to guide our yearlong inquiry of identity and place. We are journeying together, their words as our guide. Right now on our journey we are collecting experiences and ideas. We wait with anticipation as the children begin to organically make connections between ideas as they formulate new learning over time.