“Play is…more than just fun. Plenty of play in childhood makes for happy, smart adults. Keeping up with it can make us smarter at any age.” – Dr. Stuart Brown
After 20 years of teaching, I haven’t stopped playing yet! My goal is for each of my students to know that school is a safe, exciting, wondrous place where they can find their own voice and grow into the people they are meant to be. I firmly believe that a student led, play based program will give my students all the building blocks they will need to succeed.
I graduated with a BS in Elementary Education from Butler University in 1995. Since then I have taught in many different environments: elementary schools, libraries, co-op (8 years) and private and public preschool. Over the past two years I have been training in and delving into the Reggio Emilia inspired philosophy. I want my classroom to be a magical place that invites students in to explore, discover and grow. In our class we will wrap ourselves in literature, sing, dance, laugh and learn from each other.
Play based learning paired with student led projects helps give the students a pride in their identity and ownership in their work. The Reggio Emilia influence provides each student room to express their voice and ideas, discover and learn through natural materials and document their educational journey. I base my curriculum on the pace of the class, student interest as well as the Indiana Preschool Foundations.
“The most effective kind of education is that a child should play amongst lovely things. ” -Plato
I love how the co-op philosophy brings the parents right in on the ground level. We are growing people and need the whole village! Parents are their child’s first and most Influential teachers! My two children, now 15 and 12, experienced preschool co-op and I am so thankful for the educational foundation it gave them as well as the life long friends!
I am an avid reader, community theater actress and crafter. I live here in Speedway with my husband and two children. I am so very thankful and excited to be a part of the Speedway Co-op family!
Teaching preschool is all I have ever wanted to do. I feel like I am living my dream every day. I graduated from State University of NY at Cortland in 1980 with a Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education (Nursery-6th grade) and have been teaching preschool ever since. Speedway Co-op has been my home for the last 19 years and I have enjoyed every aspect of it, especially teaching siblings who tagged along as babies when older brothers or sisters were enrolled. It is wonderful when I can really get to know the families and feel as though I have made a difference in their lives. I embrace the developmental approach of co-op that allows our children to be children, get messy, have fun, make choices, laugh, and have lots of opportunities for play and social development. I love the 4/5′s age group that I teach because they keep me young and smiling every day. It is truly hard to believe I am entering my 20th year of teaching the Sparkplug’s class. Times have changed, parenting styles have changed and the faces in the classroom have changed each year, but my LOVE for teaching has not!
Mrs. Ward teaches the Sparkplugs class.