Submitting to the present moment
The training days and play days at PRIMEYARC in Great Yarmouth were simultaneously inspiring and energising. They prepared us in a very hands on way with invaluable skills for working with early years children. Our creativity and understanding blossomed through the development of games and connections with one another and the children in the context of sound and play.
We were initially told very little about the project, so it was hard and equally exciting not knowing what to expect which is a lesson in itself. When entering a nursery setting, equipped with lesson plans and resources, confident you know the direction the day will take, a completely different course unfolds, largely because of the tender age of the children. During my first nursery visit, I enthusiastically dived into the unique world of the group of two year olds and embraced their games and innocent wonder. My first interaction was with a little girl who was eager to play with me. Drawing on tools I had previously learnt, I knelt down to match her height and imitated her movements as she welcomed me with a cheeky grin. She took my hand and led me to the outdoor 'kitchen' area where she showed me how to play with the utensils and dirt creating sounds, songs and a muddy mess with several other children.
Some of our training had focused on communicating with this age group without the use of words or verbal dialogues and narratives. The benefits of this presented itself as the activity naturally took its own course. It wasn't prohibited, judged, restricted or questioned and it certainly didn't need any adult guidance. Deep in 'the zone', me and another child began singing and humming to one another in the style of call and response.
After a little while during this activity I became ironically aware of the fact I had been blissfully unaware of what was developing. I had briefly forgotten my agenda, my internal thoughts, and I had unconsciously submitted to the present moment. I was on auto-pilot, no longer functioning as an adult or teacher equipped with training and academic theories but joyfully embodying a toddler and tapping into my innate spontaneity, imagination, creativity and playfulness. It was liberating.
There was no room for any egos here, they were left at the door to be returned to you on your way out. This has been a recurring and illuminating theme during my time at Germination. There was something immensely special about these moments as I feel they are rarely experienced by many people in everyday life. There is so much to learn from working with children as possibilities are endless within their infinite world of purity, creativity and curiosity, where the boundaries of the real and imagined become fabulously blurred.