Sunday, 16 March 2014

Best job in the World!

On any given day, this could be a caterpillar tree in my world!
Some days I find myself thinking just how fortunate I am to be a nursery teacher - it is the best job in the world in my opinion!
I am surrounded by optimists who believe in themselves & their capabilities, if they fall they get up again & keep on trying. They know that practice makes perfect & that when you do master walking along a plank for the first time, you have to try it again & again until you can run along it.

These sort of things are fairly typical things I get to enjoy as a nursery teacher. 
A child finding some bark off some of the tree stumps & announcing it to be 'pineapple', some others around her accepting this & gathering enough 'pineapple' to have a whole shop! Then taking it over to the (unused) fire grill, gathering some sticks & cooking the pineapple. 
Children busy in 'the forest' (this is what we call the former grassy area of the playground) cooking some soup for a witch, as you do, with Christmas tree branches & water in a cauldron because everyone knows witches like tree branches.
Or using the planks & crates to create 4 walkways from the sand pit to the playground & trip trapping over them as billy goats with the odd child popping up from underneath being a troll. 
We have a crate full of sticks for the children to play with yet for some reason 1 stick in particular is the most popular & the 3 minute timer is in constant use when we are outside as children negotiate turns with this precious resource. To my adult eye it is a stick, to them it is so special it is worth fighting over.

But I think the aspect of my job that I really enjoy the most is that most of the children are still at a preoperational phase. This term used by Piaget covered the whole egocentric outlook of young children but I am referring more to the animist stage they are at - inanimate objects can have feelings  & intentions e.g. a teddy bear etc.
I love that most of the children can really believe that is they drop a soft toy it might have a sore head or need Mr Bump (our ice pack) to put on the sore head. I think as an adult I enjoy being able to enter back into this phase that most people have to leave around the age of 7 or 8. I get to believe that a leaf might talk or have feelings!

Another aspect of my job is that I get to enjoy picture books, I can usually be found in the children's section of any bookshop long after I have spent time browsing in the regular section. And I have been the only adult in a queue to meet Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler. I get to believe in a Gruffalo, or talking fish or lonely beasts!
Meeting Axel Scheffler - a major highlight!
I think being a nursery teacher keep me young in outlook & if I'm honest probably slightly mad!! It is very hard to sometimes step out of this world when the school day ends & I do get some funny looks from my husband sometimes if I begin to talk to a spider!!
I have said this before if I won the lottery in the morning I would keep on teaching nursery, it truly is the best job in the world.


  1. Replies
    1. Aren't we the lucky ones Tom and it keeps us young!

  2. Kierna,
    This is just a wonderful post!
    You describe the joy of working with young children so amazingly well.
    Thank you.
    Great picture as well!

    1. Hi Brenda, so lovely to hear from you. It is a joy to work with them isn't it? You can tell how happy I was to meet Axel!

  3. You are one lucky lady and it is so obvious in every post you write how much you love your job. Your children are also very lucky to have such a fabulous and committed nursery teacher xx

  4. YOU MET AXEL SCHEFFLER!!! I am soooo jealous!! I would love to ask him his inspiration for his style of drawing and to meet the man who drew one of the most well known children's book characters of this generation. Yup - jealous ;)


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