I'm enjoying catching up with myself and working through the reflective diaries that I keep (offline) for each project. The way I work is child centered, so this necessitates building on observations in order to plan what is going to be offered next.
This always takes more time than I allow, especially when I am busy, but I know that the most exciting and interesting observations build up over time so writing my scraps of notes and doodles from a variety of sources into something more coherent is vital.
|Notebooks from a project last year|
|Forest School scrap book|
With lots of my ongoing projects like the fire project (in a Foundation Stage with a group of Early Years age children) and Forest School groups we use scrap books to record what has been going on:
|Our book about Fire!|
These books are A2 size which means it is much easier to manage with a group of children. Not only are they useful for reflection but for reviewing, that critical step that allows the children to remember what took place and use this remembrance to plan and extend their own learning.
I got the idea for making these large books from a setting I was working with, based on this book by mindstretchers (more info here). What I really like is the simplicity of making scrapbooks based on the 'five hole book stitch' method. At the simplest level this is sewing together sheets of large paper or card along the seam by making five holes and stitching through in the following pattern:
Reviewing and reflection doesn't just have to be written or drawn. I often take photo graphs and short bits of video which the children can use to remember what they have done in the past:
|Ready to go to the woods, watching a video of the last session.|