A little while ago I posted about a new friend I introduced to my preschoolers. Well this week we decided it was time for him (as usual I simply assumed it was a him). to have a name.
Now there's been plenty of news of late about the battle between Presidential hopefuls in the US. Well it doesn't matter which democratic system you favour. Here in Australia we follow the Westminster System. However, I think my preschoolers and I decided to use the 'First Past the Post' system.
After accepting candidates, which was basically the children suggesting what they wanted the marionette to be called, we wrote the names down. Next we talked about how the voting would work, making sure everyone clearly understood.
As I said each name the children who wanted the dinosaur named that put their hand up and I tallied the votes, recording them beside each name. For the record, the final names up for voting were Saxon, Dylan and (I had nothing to do with this) Greg. It probably comes as no surprise to most that Greg was the ultimate winner and therefore, what we now call our marionatte.
Through such a simple experience the children learned quite advance democratic concepts that many adults struggle with. This will aid them in developing empathy as they learn to think about what the other person may be thinking. There was also math concepts of counting, comparison, and one to one correspondence. Above all, the children were empowered and had ownership over the process, making it more meaningful for them than if I had simply told them what it was called.
I hadn't given my dinosaur a name, but even if I had there is no harm in them giving it one of their own.