Listening To children

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Listening to children, I believe, is one of the most challenging responsibilities of adults. It is, however, one of the most important keys to improving one’s self and his or her relationship with others. When listening to children, we teach them how to respect and appreciate others’ perspectives, beliefs, and values. And with the diversities present in the classrooms today, children, as well as educators, need to listen with the intent to understand and appreciate others and not with the intent to reply. I really connected with the theme of assessment and evaluation and how to listen to children after reading “How to listen to very young children: The mosaic approach” by Alison Clark (2011) because it clearly defines each of the child and the adult images as well as listing specific mechanics on how to document children’s learning.  However, I was specifically interested in Learning Stories and how educators describe or document what children or group of children do and record and analyze children’s emerging experiences or stories about their own learning.

I truly believe that children should be seen as “skillful communicators, experts in their own lives, right holders and meaning makers” (Clark & Moss, 2011, p.8) and they should be listened to and “engage in the process of constructing meanings rather than being filled with knowledge.” (Clark, 2001, p.334) In addition to that, listening to young children increases adults’ understanding of their lives (Clark, 2001) rather than just assuming that we, educators, know the answers to everything.

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Which brings me to wondering…..In what ways do Learning Stories create opportunities for children to participate in decisions about their learning, assessment, and growth?






Clark, A.(2001). How to Listen To Very Young Children: The Mosaic Approach. London, England: National Child Care in Practice,  volume 7,. 333-341.

Clark, A., & Moss, P. (2011). Listening to young children: The mosaics approach (2nd Ed.). London: National Children’s Bureau.

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