Space & Time: The Power of Less

Children in modern urban times are rushed and cornered into learning objectives and producing results more than ever. However, my observations through working in both the open-ended forest school and close-ended science centre programs have taught me that children can really excel in both when given enough non-interfering SPACE and TIME. 

No matter what education a child is going through, as long as there is space and time for them to explore independently, they will naturally excel. 

Forest School Singapore (2021)

When left to devise on their own in their own time, children can create and manifest much more than when they are guided, as children have natural creativity. We can step back for 20 minutes instead of 5 minutes, and let them do their thing. And when we plan for activities, factor in plenty of buffer space to adjust and change accordingly. All these will allow time for our children to manifest their own excellent creation. 

In giving space, the allowance is available for children to linger, laze and be aware of their own pace and results of their effort. This is important as it allows space for mistakes and failures, which are both great teachers of our learning process. We can patiently wait for them to realise their results, instead of jumping in too quickly with our judgment. 

Lastly, everyone loves some recognition and praise but nobody likes to be micro-managed; it is the same for our children. Not interfering with their “work” or play is important for them in order to excel and do better. Instead of walking around them and constantly peering over their shoulders, we can instead stay in a consistent spot, and let them know that when they need us, we will be there for them, and that we trust them to be in charge of their own learning. 

Forest School Singapore (2020)

All these practices and mindset will allow our children to develop their independence, social skills and their ability to adapt and initiate. 

Sometimes doing less is more…

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