‘I can’t get over how much my child has developed already!’ exclaims one enthusiastic new Pre-Reception mum. ‘He seems to know so much more about the world’. Another smiles over the way her son went straight to hug Mrs B in the morning, clearly very happy and at ease in his new setting. Certainly, confidence and collective creativity seem very much in evidence in the early morning as the children play together in the house, with the sand, with the cylinders, following the up and down patterns and just finding out more. Later they discover the difference between a castle and a house. Everyone shares his thoughts and ideas as the children look at different pictures and decide if they belong in a house or a castle. You cannot miss the vocabulary, the sharing, the listening ears and confidence visibly growing!
Montessori and infant trained, Diana creates a child-led, exploratory approach to learning. She is passionate about Early Years teaching and ensures her classroom is ‘access all areas’ for the boys. The spontaneity, eagerness and energy of Pre-Reception age boys is what brings the joy to Diana’s teaching and to everyone in her classroom. She talks of how she relishes the responsibility of establishing the grounding for formal education for the smallest of boys, instilling in them an ability to concentrate and listen, even if it’s only in small bites to start with!
Since she was a little girl growing up in Zimbabwe, lining up her dolls and teddies in her make believe classroom, Diana has always wanted to teach. The eldest of three children, Diana loved to explore the Kruger National Park with her Grandfather, famous conservationist and Park Ranger, Harry Kirkman. With him, she felt safe to walk in the bush, but was always mindful of the array wild animals they may meet. No wonder she enjoys outdoor learning with the boys and so do they!
Diana spent thirty years living in South Africa, working and bringing up her children, before moving to the UK three years ago, with her town planner husband, to be near to her daughter and three grandchildren. Her son lives in Quebec and although she doesn’t get to see so much of him, her face lights up when she talks about her family.
Mrs B is undoubtedly a find, a treasure for St Edward’s. The Pre-Reception class promises to go from strength to strength, shoring up happiness and success in the Early Years.