Do We Take “Safety” Too Far?

During my research this morning, I ran across this article by Deb Curtis, an author of the book I am reading currently, “Designs for Living and Learning: Transforming Early Childhood Environments.” There were three things that struck me while reading the article that I wanted to discuss here.

The main thing that struck me was the way that the director mentioned involved the entire staff in discussions of safety. I can relate to the reasons that are given for this collaboration, and this article motivates me to try to encourage this type of collaboration in my own place of work.

The second point that struck me was the idea that children will only try things that they are capable of doing. This doesn’t mean that they may fail while doing it, but it does mean that, as teachers, we should give children a little more freedom to experiment, experience, and discover. The important thing to remember, as a teacher, is that sometimes this experimentation does require supervision, but there is a huge difference between supervision and simply telling a child “no” because of your fears.

The third point that struck me was the level of involvement of the parents, and it makes me realize on a whole new level how important parental involvement in a childcare setting is. The more informed and involved parents are, the less likely it is that there will be contention over certain points.

I love that I am learning all of this (especially the parental involvement part) because it resolves a lot of questions that I have had regarding issues that directors can face when it comes to liability. When parents and staff are on the same page as far as safety concerns go, that can go a long way in establishing a foundation in which to offer the most to the children that you can.