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<v Announcer>Special A Good Beginning Has No End. <v Announcer>Date August 20th, 1986. <v Announcer>Length 58:35. Crew Breland. <v Announcer>Director Editor Anderson. <v Speaker>[music plays]
<v Bob Keeshan>These are children playing, laughing, doing fun things together. <v Bob Keeshan>And it's also children learning and the people who care about them <v Bob Keeshan>are helping them learn, in ways they probably never thought about. <v Bob Keeshan>Because for a child, learning is part of living. <v Bob Keeshan>It doesn't happen all at once. <v Bob Keeshan>A child doesn't start learning the day he gets to kindergarten. <v Bob Keeshan>He's been learning all along. <v Bob Keeshan>Learning takes place gradually, like building a skyscraper, weaving <v Bob Keeshan>a spider web or constructing a scaffold. <v Bob Keeshan>All the pieces interconnect, building upward and outward when <v Bob Keeshan>a young child connects something new in his experiences to something he
<v Bob Keeshan>already knows, he's learning. <v Bob Keeshan>But you can't simply buy a kit with all the pieces and bits organized and ready <v Bob Keeshan>to build because each child is unique and special. <v Bob Keeshan>Each child assembles learning in his own way. <v Bob Keeshan>And just as a workman needs tools and raw materials to build a building. <v Bob Keeshan>A child needs tools of concern and caring and raw materials <v Bob Keeshan>of many different kinds of experiences to build his future. <v Bob Keeshan>The early years are critical years for growth, not only for the body, <v Bob Keeshan>but for the mind. I'm Bob Keeshan and a good beginning <v Bob Keeshan>has no end. <v Mother>Do you think he's ready to burp? <v Girl>Mhm. <v Mother>You think so? <v Bob Keeshan>Just as good nutrition and early childhood helps a body reach its full potential, <v Bob Keeshan>good learning experiences may set up a child for future learning.
<v Mother>Come here, baby. <v Bob Keeshan>We know that the physical effects of diet start before birth. <v Bob Keeshan>Now there is evidence that indicates that even learning may start before birth. <v Bob Keeshan>We do know for certain that learning begins in the crib and continues throughout <v Bob Keeshan>life. A child's brain grows rapidly and it begins to learn very <v Bob Keeshan>quickly during the early years. <v Bob Keeshan>At only 8 weeks, a baby can distinguish the voice and face of its mother <v Bob Keeshan>from all others. <v Mother>Come on, come on. Give me that smile. C'mon girl. <v Bob Keeshan>Very soon the baby begins to respond to many other sounds, shapes, <v Bob Keeshan>colors and physical features. <v Mother>[birds chirping] [toy rattles] You want to play with the bird? You hear those birds? <v Bob Keeshan>The more experiences the baby has with sounds, shapes and the world around <v Bob Keeshan>him, the more he's able to make connections. <v Mother>Uh oh. <v Girl>What color's this? <v Baby>Yellow. <v Mother>That's orange that Lauren has, ?inaudible? <v Girl>Now, now put them together, okay?
<v Bob Keeshan>All these beginnings have an impact on the connections the child will make from <v Bob Keeshan>that time on, but the bits and pieces of information <v Bob Keeshan>are incomplete and they won't come together until the child is ready <v Bob Keeshan>to absorb and process them and form them into ?understandings?. <v Bob Keeshan>Not like an adult would, but in a way she needs to put the pieces together. <v Bob Keeshan>When the child is very young, it may be as simple as understanding that all these <v Bob Keeshan>beads can be sorted into groups of colors. <v Mother>Do you see any other things that match? Those match. <v Mother>What else matches? <v Bob Keeshan>Later, it may be more complicated. For example, I can group these beads by colors. <v Bob Keeshan>But I can also group them by shapes or by size. <v Mother>Those match, but are they the same color? <v Toddler Boy>This one doesn't match this one. <v Bob Keeshan>These children are beginning to understand how to group or classify things
<v Bob Keeshan>in different ways. <v Bob Keeshan>This is a connection that will help them understand later how objects <v Bob Keeshan>and events relate to each other. The more connections are made, <v Bob Keeshan>the more rapidly a child acquires new information. <v Bob Keeshan>As a child acquires more information, learning becomes more organized <v Bob Keeshan>and intentional. <v Bob Keeshan>Different kinds of learning may take place at the same time. <v Bob Keeshan>Throughout the exploring and refining process, children need a challenging <v Bob Keeshan>and stimulating environment. <v Shirley Malcolm>I think that early experience <v Shirley Malcolm>is absolutely essential to later learning. <v Shirley Malcolm>Um, the educational psychologist <v Shirley Malcolm>types. I am not one. <v Shirley Malcolm>I am a I am a scientist. <v Shirley Malcolm>Uh talk about the whole idea of scaffolding.
<v Shirley Malcolm>Um, in animal behavior, which I know better, we talk about the whole process of <v Shirley Malcolm>schema formation. <v Shirley Malcolm>As bits and pieces of information are placed into an overall <v Shirley Malcolm>matrix, if you would, and that that that the more that <v Shirley Malcolm>picture fills in, the more sense that it makes. <v Shirley Malcolm>Those experiences that kids have early on are going <v Shirley Malcolm>to make sense to them later on. <v Bob Keeshan>Simple everyday tasks and happenings can be turned into opportunities <v Bob Keeshan>to learn. <v Mother>Which one should I get, Andrea? <v Andrea>This one. <v Mother>Why this one? <v Andrea>'Cause it's ?more?. <v Mother>More what? <v Andrea>Peanut butter. <v Mother>More peanut butter, OK. Put it in the basket, let's go. <v Mother>Look at those purple ones, aren't they pretty? You like these? <v Bob Keeshan> <v Bob Keeshan>Children are always exploring, questioning, examining,
<v Bob Keeshan>and interpreting the world around them. <v Mother>One inch? <v Child>Uh huh. <v Mother>How much is this-? <v Bob Keeshan>All the questions they ask, all the funny things they think of are part <v Bob Keeshan>of the puzzle, the learning scaffold they're trying to put together. <v Mother>Are they different? Or are they the same? <v Child>They're the same. <v Mother>Good! <v Child>?inaudible? same size, they don't look the same size. <v Mother>Why don't they look the same size? <v Child>'Cause I cut this one out smaller, but they really were the same size when they weren't cut out. <v Mother>Oh, ok. <v Bob Keeshan>They should be encouraged to observe, manipulate, compare, <v Bob Keeshan>group and give ?inaudible? <v Bob Keeshan>To things around them. <v Bob Keeshan>This is their way of learning and forming ideas. <v Bob Keeshan>The foundation is being built for future learning in math, science, reading <v Bob Keeshan>and language.
<v Bob Keeshan>When children learn how to group or classify things about number and counting, how <v Bob Keeshan>time and sequences work, <v Bob Keeshan>about space and relationships and how to compare and order things, they <v Bob Keeshan>are forming connections to later learning. <v Bob Keeshan>While it may not be obvious at first what these concepts have to do with later learning, <v Bob Keeshan>each one is a critical hurdle for a youngster. <v Bob Keeshan>These are the mental processes that make it possible for human beings to <v Bob Keeshan>acquire, store, and more importantly, evaluate <v Bob Keeshan>information. They are essential and sometimes difficult stepping <v Bob Keeshan>stones in a child's mental development. <v Teacher>13. Bradley, wait a minute. I want to shake Lorenzo's hand 'cause he's right ready to go today. He's thinking. <v Teacher> <v Bob Keeshan>Kindergarten is a very important year for crossing these stepping stones <v Bob Keeshan>and making sure stages are not skipped or partially achieved.
<v Bob Keeshan>It's a continuation of the learning that has taken place since birth and a refinement <v Bob Keeshan>of the thinking processes that make children ready to learn in school. <v Child>No, uh, 6. <v Teacher>OK, count them for us, Kristen. Touch them, ?inaudible? <v Kids>1 2 3 4 5 6. [music plays]. <v Child>Daddy, why doesn't the moon fall out of the sky? <v Father>Why do you ask that? <v Child>Well, rain falls, snow falls. <v Child>Remember last winter? Why doesn't the moon fall? <v Father>I've never thought about it. What do you think? <v Child>[sighs] <v Child>Well, it's like a balloon. That's why. <v Father>Ooh, where are you going? <v Child>I'm going to go get the moon. I'll be right back, Daddy. <v Bob Keeshan>This conversation might be amusing, but an observant adult will also <v Bob Keeshan>realize that the child is struggling with the question of classification,
<v Bob Keeshan>how to group similar things. <v Bob Keeshan>Just because a child can name the moon doesn't mean he understands what the moon is <v Bob Keeshan>and is not like. <v Bob Keeshan>At first, the child thought the moon was like rain and snow because <v Bob Keeshan>they're all in the sky, but rain and snow all out of the sky, <v Bob Keeshan>and the moon does not. <v Bob Keeshan>The adult could have explained why the moon doesn't fall out of the sky, but instead he <v Bob Keeshan>let the child sort out the question himself, and he did. <v Bob Keeshan>He decided the moon was like a balloon because they both <v Bob Keeshan>float or stay in the sky. <v Bob Keeshan>Children need experiences that help them realize that objects have certain <v Bob Keeshan>characteristics of properties. <v Bob Keeshan>Some obvious like color. <v Bob Keeshan>Others you have to think about like what they do. <v Bob Keeshan>Then a child starts to understand that other objects may share some of those <v Bob Keeshan>properties. This is what classification or grouping is all about.
<v Teacher>A plant eater, that's right. Do you remember his name? <v Child>I do. <v Teacher>What's his name? <v Child>Brontosaurus. <v Teacher>Brontosaurus, that's right. <v Teacher>What did Brontosaurus eat? <v Child>Plants. <v Teacher>What kind of plants? <v Child>Grass. <v Teacher>Grass. What else? <v Bob Keeshan>This teacher uses children's natural fascination with dinosaurs to give <v Bob Keeshan>her students experiences with grouping. <v Child>Here's one, here's one, and-. <v Teacher>You made two Brontosaurus. <v Teacher>Jim, some of these dinosaurs have bony plates on their back. <v Teacher>Could you put the ones that have bony plates over here? <v Teacher>On their back, the ones who have bony plates on the back and the ones that do not over <v Teacher>here? We could classify them like that. <v Bob Keeshan>Dinosaurs can be grouped into plant eaters and meat eaters. <v Bob Keeshan>Or into those that go into the water and those that don't. <v Bob Keeshan>Or by those that have scales and those that have skin.
<v Teacher>Very good. Wait, where would he go? <v Teacher>Does he have a bony plate on his back? <v Teacher>All right. So which group would he go in to? <v Child>?inaudible? <v Teacher>OK. <v Teacher>He would go over there with the dinosaurs that do not have bony plates on their back. <v Teacher>Good job. Give me a hand shake. You go back to your place. <v Bob Keeshan>When children understand that something may have many different characteristics, they <v Bob Keeshan>will then be able to put the same object into different categories. <v Bob Keeshan>A dinosaur might be a plant eater and go into the water. <v Teacher>?Harry?, Danielle, Scott, and Tony. They're all different, right? But if we wanted <v Teacher>to put these boys and girls into two groups, <v Teacher>how could we group them? <v Child>Put Tony and Danielle together and Scott and ?Harry?. OK. All right. Let's see what happens if we do that. <v Bob Keeshan>Children can choose their own way to group things by comparing how things <v Bob Keeshan>are alike or different.
<v Teacher>What do these 2 children have alike? <v Child>Blonde. <v Teacher>Blonde hair. <v Bob Keeshan>Like physical characteristics. <v Teacher>They both have blonde hair. <v Child>And they both have black hair. <v Teacher>And they both have black hair. So we could classify these boys and girls by <v Teacher>their hair color. <v Bob Keeshan>What fun to speculate about which groups these ?inaudible? <v Bob Keeshan>would fall into. <v Teacher>Wait a minute. Here we go. [music plays] Start ?inaudible? Just snap. [snapping] [singing] <v Teacher>Here we go. <v Music>The ?inaudible? bone connects to the ankle bone. The ankle bone is connected to the shin bone. The shin bone is connected to the knee bone. The knee bone is connected to the leg <v Music>bone. The leg bone is connected to the hip bone. The hip bone is connected to the ?back? bone. Now ?inaudible? [snapping]
<v Bob Keeshan>Of course, classifying things is not limited to academic subjects such as dinosaurs. <v Bob Keeshan>We use it all the time without even thinking about it. <v Bob Keeshan>And children will learn to use grouping to accomplish things on their own, <v Bob Keeshan>like finding clothes that match. <v Mother>For socks? <v Child>Pink. <v Mother>You like the pink with the flowers. And what's the gray go with? <v Bob Keeshan>Or sorting the tools dad needs to work on the car. <v Father>?There we go?. Good girl. <v Bob Keeshan>Taking out or putting away toys encourages children to think about groups. <v Keith>This is a bad one, and that's a bad one, that's a good one and- <v Bob Keeshan>Keith already knows the good guys from the bad guys. <v Keith>That's a bad one.
<v Bob Keeshan>These children are grouping and arranging things by shape and color, <v Bob Keeshan>even by the likeness of words on bottle caps. <v Bob Keeshan>They are getting ready to read. <v Bob Keeshan>Here at chart groups the children's names by the month they were born. <v Bob Keeshan>Here, they are grouped by the bus they ride, saying something <v Bob Keeshan>very important to them their names on this kind of chart will help <v Bob Keeshan>them understand more advanced graphs later. <v Jim Turner>Well, mostly classification deals with um looking at similarities <v Jim Turner>among the physical properties of objects so that when a child <v Jim Turner>does something or classifies it as we call it, he puts it into groupings of <v Jim Turner>things that um he generally recognizes, if if you have a <v Jim Turner>series of uh ashtrays around the room like we have on the table here. <v Jim Turner>And he would sort them out or classify them.
<v Jim Turner>He might put he might put all the big ones together and he might put all the small ones <v Jim Turner>together, or he might put them all together by color. <v Jim Turner>But he decides that because he knows in his mind <v Jim Turner>what rules of classification that he is using and therefore he sorts <v Jim Turner>them that way. The children are very creative when they learn how to <v Jim Turner>um use the ideas of the mind. <v Jim Turner>This is what you're, this is really what you're doing is you're trying to get that mind <v Jim Turner>to to turn over and to do things that are just totally different than <v Jim Turner>uh name what that item is on the table. <v Jim Turner>You want them to develop the idea that they can use their minds to manipulate <v Jim Turner>the the physical properties and the ideas and come up with new conclusions. <v Abigail>?inaudible? <v Bob Keeshan>Children are naturally creative and with a little guidance, their creativity <v Bob Keeshan>will be a springboard for their cognitive development. <v Bob Keeshan>Abigail decided she wanted to paint a group of things, houses.
<v Bob Keeshan>But she had only painted a little bit of land and a lot of water. <v Bob Keeshan>So her mother suggested she make a houseboat. <v Bob Keeshan>It would still be a house, but it would be a different kind of house. <v Bob Keeshan>Then Abigail went one step further herself. <v Bob Keeshan>She painted an airplane house. <v Bob Keeshan>All 3 could be classified as houses. <v Bob Keeshan>An incredible amount of learning takes place and seemingly typical conversations <v Bob Keeshan>between children and adults when children are encouraged to explore, <v Bob Keeshan>experiment, and reinvent ideas, children want <v Bob Keeshan>to explore and analyze everything they see. <v Bob Keeshan>There are no limits to their curiosity and imagination unless adults <v Bob Keeshan>set them. Because learning about new things is fun. <v Bob Keeshan>For young children, learning is more than just receiving information. <v Bob Keeshan>It's a process of understanding that information and applying it in new ways. <v Bob Keeshan>Just as the child had to go beyond learning the name for the moon to understand
<v Bob Keeshan>what it was like, a child must know more than the name for numbers to understand, number. <v Bob Keeshan>A child does not necessarily understand <v Bob Keeshan>the number 4 just because she could hold up 4 fingers when asked, <v Bob Keeshan>how old are you? She must understand that her fingers stand for years. <v Bob Keeshan>A step in learning what numbers mean and how they work. <v Bob Keeshan>This understanding comes with experience. <v Bob Keeshan>Step by step through active participation in a variety <v Bob Keeshan>of number-related experiences. <v Bob Keeshan>[music plays] <v Bob Keeshan>Snoopy may not realize that setting the table is a learning experience,
<v Bob Keeshan>but it is. <v Mother>One for Daddy. <v Mother>Where's Daddy sit? <v Mother>OK. <v Bob Keeshan>This 3 year old is helping her mother with an ordinary routine <v Bob Keeshan>and learning about numbers and how they work. <v Bob Keeshan>In the very early stages of understanding, the one plate that goes <v Bob Keeshan>to Daddy is Daddy's plate. <v Bob Keeshan>The one plate that goes to brother is brother's plate and so on. <v Mother>OK, what else do we need? <v Mother>How about can you help me finish setting the table? <v Bob Keeshan>The child understands that there will be one plate or 4 for one member <v Bob Keeshan>of the family. <v Child>?inaudible? <v Mother>Uh huh. There's <v Mother>one more. <v Mother>What's that? <v Child>A spoon.
<v Child>OK. ?inaudible? Baby spoon. ?inaudible? 2 spoons. <v Mother>How can- yeah, you can't have 2 spoons, can you? <v Child>?David? gets the ?other? One. <v Mother>OK. <v Child>?inaudible? and one for ?inaudible? <v Mother>OK. <v Child>I got this one. <v Child>I got this one. <v Bob Keeshan>Children might also learn the concept of one for a one on the playground <v Bob Keeshan>through necessity. <v Child>1, 2, 3, 4. <v Bob Keeshan>From this understanding, of one for one, a child learns that <v Bob Keeshan>if there are 4 people eating, she can count out any 4 plates <v Bob Keeshan>and each person will have one. <v Bob Keeshan>She understands that the quantity 4 can mean <v Bob Keeshan>4 plates, 4 people or 4 of anything. <v Teacher>Ready? <v Kids>8. <v Teacher>8. Christie can
<v Teacher>you count 8 beads for me? <v Bob Keeshan>The child progresses to understand that any quantity <v Bob Keeshan>4, 6, or 8 has a symbol that means 4, 6, or 8. <v Bob Keeshan>The child is then ready to expand on that, to understand that if <v Bob Keeshan>you add to or take away from that quantity, it changes <v Bob Keeshan>and becomes more or less. <v Speaker>This is the case of the disappearing chocolate chip cookie. <v Speaker>I put 4 chocolate chip cookies into my lunch bag. <v Speaker>I counted them as I put them in. 1, 2, 3, 4. [growling] [noises] <v Speaker>I was momentarily distracted by a noise from down the hall.
<v Speaker>Well, that should take care of that for a while. Oh man, I got to get to work. [music plays] <v Speaker>Later at work, when I open my lunch, there were only 3 <v Speaker>chocolate chip cookies. 1, 2, 3. <v Speaker>So, this morning, I had 4 chocolate chip cookies. <v Speaker>Now I only have 3. <v Speaker>Think you can tell me why, Julie? <v Julie>'Cause I took one of them. <v Speaker>But you know how I love your mother's homemade chocolate chip cookies.
<v Speaker>Why would you take one of my 4 chocolate chip cookies and leave me only 3? <v Julie>I give you 2 of my cookies, then you have more than 4. <v Speaker>Well, all right, I guess. <v Speaker>1, 2, 3 cookies. <v Julie>4, 5 cookies. Now you have more than 4. <v Speaker> But why would <v Speaker>you trade 2 of these green cookies for 1 chocolate chip cookie? <v Speaker>What kind of cookies are these anyway? <v Julie>Spinach cookies. [laughing] [music plays]. <v Child>Put 6 on there. You got 2, 2. 5, you got 5 there. 5, 6. <v Bob Keeshan>Each Hands-On experience broadens a child's understanding of adding
<v Bob Keeshan>and subtracting and becomes the idea of more and less. <v Teacher>What number is this? <v Teacher>4 take away. <v Child>1. <v Teacher>Alright, put 4 frogs. <v Child>1, 2. <v Bob Keeshan>These are all activities that help kids see what counting means <v Bob Keeshan>and how adding to and taking away from actually work. <v Child>4. <v Teacher>4. Take away how many? <v Child>1. <v Teacher>?inaudible? take away the 1. Leaves how many? How many is that? <v Child>3. <v Teacher>3. <v Teacher>3 cups Rice Crispies. This is a measuring cup, okay?. <v Teacher>Each one of these makes one cup. How many do we need?
<v Child>3 cups. <v Teacher>3 cups, that's right. Hey, Vanessa, can you pour up 1 cup of. <v Teacher>Fill it to the top. <v Bob Keeshan>Cooking is a wonderful way to help children learn number concepts. <v Bob Keeshan>In this kindergarten cooking area, they are pouring, counting <v Bob Keeshan>and measuring. <v Teacher>That's right. Keep going. Good, OK. What are those Rice Crispies taste like, ?Tony? <v Child>?inaudible? <v Bob Keeshan>In the home, parents can reinforce the activities. <v Bob Keeshan>There are all kinds of things at home to count and <v Bob Keeshan>match. Count windows ?inaudible? <v Bob Keeshan>Are there more windows than doors? <v Bob Keeshan>How many? <v Child>1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. <v Mother>How many
<v Mother>more you need to make a dozen? <v Child>11, one more. <v Bob Keeshan>Buttons, beans, spools, egg cartons, <v Bob Keeshan>even plants in the garden can all be used for counting. <v Bob Keeshan>All this exposure to counting thing is right before her eyes. <v Bob Keeshan>Adding to taking away from things that are actually there <v Bob Keeshan>prepares a child to conceptualize or think of the idea <v Bob Keeshan>of number. These are ideas she ?with <v Bob Keeshan>her? In school. <v Shirley Malcolm>Children are natural scientists. <v Shirley Malcolm>They come here curious. <v Shirley Malcolm>They want to know and understand what is out there <v Shirley Malcolm>in the world that's around them. <v Shirley Malcolm>And this need to know is something that <v Shirley Malcolm>will hopefully hold them in good stead as they later go into
<v Shirley Malcolm>a school situation to try to study things like science <v Shirley Malcolm>or like mathematics. But their first learning doesn't occur in school. <v Shirley Malcolm>It occurs at home. It occurs out at play. <v Shirley Malcolm>It occurs in all of the everyday kinds of experiences that any normal <v Shirley Malcolm>kid is going to have growing up at the playground on a teeter totter. <v Shirley Malcolm>Uh, in the kitchen with the pots and pans, uh helping mother <v Shirley Malcolm>to sew with the buttons, matching the the color of the <v Shirley Malcolm>zipper with the color of the dress of the material. <v Shirley Malcolm>The parents <v Shirley Malcolm>can be absolutely crucial <v Shirley Malcolm>to the learning and early expectations of a child. <v Bob Keeshan>Although the concepts children learn early on may seem simple to an adult, <v Bob Keeshan>these connections form the solid foundation for all future intellectual
<v Bob Keeshan>development. Must seem pretty obvious by now what a big role parents <v Bob Keeshan>and caretakers play in the building process. <v Bob Keeshan>All it takes is sharing the everyday world with your children, talking with them, <v Bob Keeshan>asking questions, answering a few, too. <v Bob Keeshan>Involving them in everyday tasks that contribute to a child's awareness. <v Bob Keeshan>Now it's not a matter of telling a child what he needs to know. <v Bob Keeshan>You can't just say, "look, 2 plus 2 is 4. <v Bob Keeshan>Now you've learned something. Don't forget it". <v Bob Keeshan>Being actively involved in the learning process is what helps make every <v Bob Keeshan>connection in the learning scaffold sturdy. <v Mildred Winter>When a first child is born into a family, in actuality, 3 <v Mildred Winter>people are born. The new baby and 2 new parents. <v Mildred Winter>And that's when the labor really begins. <v Mildred Winter>And although parenting is a labor of love, it certainly is fraught <v Mildred Winter>with its frustrat- frustrations, and its trials and tribulations,
<v Mildred Winter>because we have done uh very little in our educational <v Mildred Winter>system to prepare people for the all important role of shaping <v Mildred Winter>another human being. <v Mildred Winter>Research that has come out of education in medicine and psychology <v Mildred Winter>from the 50s and the early 60s has clearly shown that the <v Mildred Winter>first 3 years of a child's life are crucial to all of <v Mildred Winter>formal education. <v Bob Keeshan>Now we've been talking about what an important year kindergarten is and how parents can <v Bob Keeshan>be a part of the learning that takes place at this age. <v Bob Keeshan>Giving their children all they need and deserve to fulfill their potential. <v Bob Keeshan>Just how valuable is all this emphasis on the young child? <v Bob Keeshan>Study after study shows the connection between a wholesome early learning life <v Bob Keeshan>and success as an adult. <v Bob Keeshan>Perhaps the most positive information comes from a 22 year study <v Bob Keeshan>of preschool programs in Ypsilanti, Michigan. <v Bob Keeshan>The findings of this careful study present clear evidence that early childhood
<v Bob Keeshan>programs and increased parent awareness will help children overcome <v Bob Keeshan>later problems and not just problems in school either. <v Bob Keeshan>Difficulty with the law, detention, and arrest rates and even teenage pregnancy <v Bob Keeshan>were lower in the children who went to preschool. <v Bob Keeshan>2 out of 3 young people who went to preschool graduated from high school <v Bob Keeshan>and nearly 40 percent went on to college. <v Bob Keeshan>Double the rate of the no preschoolers. <v Bob Keeshan>So we know from this study that especially for underprivileged children, <v Bob Keeshan>preschool has a strong positive effect academically and <v Bob Keeshan>socially. A follow up study in Ypsilanti, released in April 1986, <v Bob Keeshan>shows how successful preschool programs that rely on teachers and <v Bob Keeshan>children to initiate learning activities together can be. <v Bob Keeshan>What these studies show is that working with children is more important <v Bob Keeshan>and enriching their lives than putting pressure on them to perform.
<v Bob Keeshan>This type of learning where children are active participants in the learning <v Bob Keeshan>process, guided and supported by adults, can easily become <v Bob Keeshan>part of a child's home environment. <v Bob Keeshan>We've talked about how children learn by building and connecting ideas, <v Bob Keeshan>so they have to have many different experiences on which to base those ideas. <v Bob Keeshan>Think about this. A child can only remember what order things happen in a story, <v Bob Keeshan>if someone tells them a story. <v Bob Keeshan>Parents can help children relate events in their lives to beginnings, <v Bob Keeshan>endings, or what happened first, last, yesterday, <v Bob Keeshan>or even this morning.
<v Speaker>[bell rings] [birds chirping] [car starting] [tape rewinds] [birds chirping] [tape rewinds] [tape rewinds] <v Patricia Bartlett>One of the things that we know about children is that routines are <v Patricia Bartlett>very important to them. <v Patricia Bartlett>So if we can use that knowledge <v Patricia Bartlett>to work with children, to talk with them, for instance, <v Patricia Bartlett>helping a child to begin to understand that before <v Patricia Bartlett>bedtime, certain things will happen in many families. <v Patricia Bartlett>A story comes before bedtime so that a child may <v Patricia Bartlett>not necessarily know that at 8 o'clock she goes to bed. <v Patricia Bartlett>She does know that after the story is read, bedtime will come <v Patricia Bartlett>next. It's very difficult for young children to understand <v Patricia Bartlett>um past events. <v Patricia Bartlett>It's even more difficult for them to have a good concept of <v Patricia Bartlett>future time.
<v Patricia Bartlett>Children love to look at pictures of themselves, and I'm sure <v Patricia Bartlett>that most parents are aware of that. <v Patricia Bartlett>One of the ways in which we can help children understand past <v Patricia Bartlett>events in terms of time concepts is to use that photo <v Patricia Bartlett>album and to talk with children about this is a picture of when <v Patricia Bartlett>you are a tiny baby. <v Patricia Bartlett>And this is another picture of when you were 2 years old. <v Patricia Bartlett>How much bigger you were when you were 2. <v Patricia Bartlett>Then when you were a baby and so on and so forth. <v Patricia Bartlett>Now you are 5 years old then. <v Patricia Bartlett>And look at all the things that you can do now that you couldn't do when you were 2 years <v Patricia Bartlett>old. And look how much taller you are and so on and so forth. <v Patricia Bartlett>When children learn to read, it is important in <v Patricia Bartlett>terms of comprehending what one has read. <v Patricia Bartlett>To know the sequence in which a story has developed
<v Patricia Bartlett>and that is a time concept to know what happened at the beginning of the story. <v Patricia Bartlett>Then what happened next? <v Patricia Bartlett>And so on. Until well, how did the story end? <v Patricia Bartlett>So time concepts are very important in reading. <v Bob Keeshan>A day earlier, if you ask these kids where peanut butter came from, <v Bob Keeshan>they probably would have said from a jar. <v Bob Keeshan>Now they are picking the peanuts themselves. <v Bob Keeshan>Their teacher has them actively involved in the first step of <v Bob Keeshan>making peanut butter. <v Teacher>Use your muscles and mix the peanuts. Now, what do you do after you mix them? <v Kids>Spread them. <v Teacher>Spread them. <v Bob Keeshan>Back in the classroom, they learned the sequence, what to do next
<v Bob Keeshan>and so on. They are learning by doing. <v Bob Keeshan>In what order the steps must come? <v Bob Keeshan>The activity is clear and meaningful because the children themselves <v Bob Keeshan>must complete one step before the next one can begin. <v Bob Keeshan>The teacher reinforces the learning with this song. <v Bob Keeshan>[kids and teacher singing] <v Class>[singing] Peanut, peanut butter. ?inaudible? First, you take the peanuts and you pick them. You pick them, you pick 'em, pick 'em, pick 'em. Peanut, peanut butter. Peanut, peanut <v Class>butter. <v Bob Keeshan>Counting. <v Class>Then, you take the peanuts and you smash them. <v Bob Keeshan>And making their names with peanuts. <v Bob Keeshan>The children understand the sequence of events because <v Bob Keeshan>they actually did the things themselves. <v Class>Then you take the peanuts and you mix 'em, you mix 'em. You mix 'em, mix 'em, mix 'em.
<v Mother>Keith, you ready to eat? <v Bob Keeshan>It's only natural for parents to reinforce this kind of learning at <v Bob Keeshan>home, particularly with the sequence of familiar activities <v Bob Keeshan>like fixing lunch. <v Mother>What do we need first if we're gonna make a sandwich? <v Keith>Bread, peanut butter, a bowl, knife, and spoon, peanut butter and jelly. <v Mother>[laughing] All right, okay. <v Teacher>All right, Keith. I want you to look at this picture. <v Teacher>Now, let me show it to everyone else and I wan everyone else to shh. <v Teacher>[whispers] This is Keith's picture. <v Teacher>Let's see if he can find which season this picture goes in. <v Teacher>Which one do you think it goes in, Keith? <v Bob Keeshan>Naturally, 4 and 5 year olds have a short history and <v Bob Keeshan>no understanding of the passage of time. <v Bob Keeshan>They usually remember yesterday and last week and that it's
<v Bob Keeshan>about the same time span. <v Bob Keeshan>Tomorrow is very difficult to contemplate, which is why <v Bob Keeshan>they often feel they can't wait that long. <v Bob Keeshan>Next spring may not seem real to them at all. <v Bob Keeshan>They need all the involvement they can get to understand what happens <v Bob Keeshan>at what time, or how seasons change in a predictable <v Bob Keeshan>way. <v Child>Do you know when rabbits lay egg- lay their babies? ?inaudible? It's Spring. <v Child>Spring? <v Bob Keeshan>School and home form a strong bond to help young children learn how to <v Bob Keeshan>put events in the proper sequence. <v Bob Keeshan>How to remember, and what order things happen, or how to understand the passing of <v Bob Keeshan>time. Routine activities at home, such as making a sandwich <v Bob Keeshan>or talking about changes from one season to the next, provide the <v Bob Keeshan>perfect opportunity for children to have concrete experiences that pave the
<v Bob Keeshan>way to future learning. <v Bob Keeshan>In the same way, other simple activities can reinforce spatial concepts <v Bob Keeshan>like over and under or near and far. <v Bob Keeshan>Why not ask a child to hang his jacket near his raincoat or put her stuffed <v Bob Keeshan>bear on top of her pillow? <v Bob Keeshan>By using familiar activities, the parent is setting up the child for success <v Bob Keeshan>with learning. <v Teacher>Simon says put your hand straight out. <v Teacher>Simon says wave your hands around. Stop waving your hands around. Simon says waves your hands in front of you. Simon says wave your hands back of you. Simon says jump up and down <v Teacher>while waving your hands back. Stop!. Simon - <v Patricia Bartlett>A child's understanding of space and where objects <v Patricia Bartlett>are in space develops very naturally
<v Patricia Bartlett>from the child's understanding of his own body moving <v Patricia Bartlett>through space. <v Patricia Bartlett>This is a case in which physical development and physical movement is very <v Patricia Bartlett>important to an abstract concept such as <v Patricia Bartlett>space. <v Patricia Bartlett>The child needs to have a great deal of experience in <v Patricia Bartlett>positioning herself under a table. <v Patricia Bartlett>Next to the chair. <v Patricia Bartlett>On top of the jungle gym or <v Patricia Bartlett>whatever. It's only through the child experiencing <v Patricia Bartlett>her own body in space that a child begins to understand <v Patricia Bartlett>what these words mean. <v Patricia Bartlett>[music plays]. <v Child>Let's all get in here! 3 groundhogs are going to pop out!
<v Bob Keeshan>Kristen, Abigail and ?June Boy? <v Bob Keeshan>Are pretending to be groundhogs. <v Bob Keeshan>Gradually waking up, rubbing their eyes, and coming out of <v Bob Keeshan>their hole in search of their shadows. <v Bob Keeshan>They're also having fun showing they know these spatial concepts. <v Teacher>Let's let the groundhog go far away from his home. <v Teacher>He's going far away. You want to let him come back near? Let's let the groundhog come back near. He's near. Oh, mine's tired. He's going in his hole. ?Want to do? over? Over. Want <v Teacher>to see its shadow? Let's see if we can make a shadow. <v Bob Keeshan>Inside the classroom, these kindergarten students are learning about near and <v Bob Keeshan>far, inside, above and others space concepts.
<v Teacher>We mailed it yesterday. <v Teacher>You're going to get it today. You didn't take you very long to get your letter did it, <v Teacher>Jason? <v Bob Keeshan>Children at this age often do not understand the difference between <v Bob Keeshan>near and far. Only through concrete examples will children <v Bob Keeshan>begin to understand their meaning. <v Teacher>And I mailed me a letter yesterday at the ?start? of the post office. Do you think I'll get my letter today? <v Child>Yes, ?inaudible? <v Teacher>Well, I just live down the road. Danielle, look. <v Teacher>Here is start for this drive down the road. [car noises] <v Teacher>Let's go on to Brooksville, because that's where I live. <v Bob Keeshan>In this play area, set up to allow the children's imagination <v Bob Keeshan>to do all the work, these 2 children carry on a conversation <v Bob Keeshan>about distance. They're on their way to understanding about near and <v Bob Keeshan>far, but their comprehension of the concept is still
<v Bob Keeshan>incomplete. <v Bob Keeshan>Did you ever think that going to the post office was such an important learning <v Bob Keeshan>experience? <v Keith's Grandfather>Almost there. <v Bob Keeshan>When adults like Keith's grandfather share every day errands, like <v Bob Keeshan>this. Asking questions,. <v Keith's Grandfather>Tell me which way to turn up here now? Which way? <v Keith's Grandfather>Left or right? <v Keith>Right. <v Keith's Grandfather>OK. Here we go. All right, that's good, that's good, Keith. <v Keith's Grandfather>You you've been there a couple of times with your mother, haven't you? <v Bob Keeshan>Even pointing out familiar landmarks to help him think about distances.
<v Keith's Grandfather>Look up here. ?Keys? on the left here. <v Keith's Grandfather>?inaudible? look what they've done to the old depot. Isn't that nice? <v Bob Keeshan>Everybody wins. <v Keith's Grandfather>Post office, ?inaudible? Yeah. <v Bob Keeshan>At home, Keith makes his own map of the morning's route and where all the buildings <v Bob Keeshan>he passed are in relation to each other. <v Bob Keeshan>If learning comes first through doing, it's a very short distance <v Bob Keeshan>from active real experiences to more intellectual ones. <v Bob Keeshan>A child first needs to place and compare familiar objects <v Bob Keeshan>to begin to understand how to compare other objects and eventually <v Bob Keeshan>how to compare ideas. <v Speaker>Oh, King Cookie. <v Cookie Monster>You looking at them. Yeah. <v Speaker>Oh, look at this. I found one big cookie. <v Cookie Monster>Let's see. Yeah, yeah. That one big cookie. <v Cookie Monster>But uh it not the biggest cookie.
<v Speaker>Oh no? <v Cookie Monster>No. <v Speaker>Aw. <v Cookie Monster>Next. [music plays] <v Cookie Monster>I wonder what that is. <v Speaker>Oh, King Cookie. <v Cookie Monster>You're all looking at him. <v Speaker>I've got a bigger cookie. <v Cookie Monster>Let's see. Uh this uh big cookie. <v Cookie Monster>Yeah. And uh this here bigger cookie. <v Speaker>That's a bigger cookie. <v Cookie Monster>But <v Cookie Monster>not the biggest cookie. <v Speaker>Oh, okay. <v Cookie Monster>Next. <v Cookie Monster>[music plays] Cut. OK. <v Speaker>Oh, King Cookie. <v Cookie Monster>You still looking at him. <v Speaker>I have here, sir, the biggest cookie in the whole land. <v Cookie Monster>Let's see. Uh this big cookie. <v Speaker>Yeah, that's a big cookie. <v Cookie Monster>And uh this bigger cookie. <v Speaker>That's a bigger cookie. <v Cookie Monster>But you're right. <v Cookie Monster>That the biggest cookie. <v Speaker>This is the biggest cookie in the whole land. <v Cookie Monster>Okay. Bring me cookie. <v Cookie Monster>Biggest cookie. <v Speaker>Well, what are you gonna do with it, sir?
<v Cookie Monster>What me going to do with it? Huh? <v Cookie Monster>Silly question. Cowabunga! [eats cookie] <v Teacher>You could start right here. You're on the right track. <v Teacher>You're thinking. Large. <v Kids>Largest. <v Teacher>Wait, which one's the largest? <v Teacher>So what would this one be? <v Bobby>Larger. <v Teacher>Did you hear what ?Bobby? said? Look at that smile on his face. <v Teacher>He said. Say it louder so I can hear you. <v Bob Keeshan>These children are involved in activities to help them understand <v Bob Keeshan>ordering. That is how to compare things and put them in an order by <v Bob Keeshan>relationships. <v Teacher>Larger largest. <v Teacher>All right. You could say, see ?Ronnie? thought of another word. <v Teacher>You could say big. <v Child>Bigger. Big. <v Teacher>Biggest. <v Bob Keeshan>By comparing the size of these hearts, they figure out that one is
<v Bob Keeshan>big, one is little. <v Bob Keeshan>They are also shown that the hearts can be compared in terms of <v Bob Keeshan>which is small, smaller, and smallest. <v Child>That that is the smallest, now that one is the smallest. These 3 are middle-sized ones. <v Bob Keeshan>They also compare the hearts' textures. <v Bob Keeshan>Not only what the textures are, but what they feel like compared <v Bob Keeshan>to other hearts. <v Teacher>Alright, what else is different? <v Child>They are soft and rough. <v Teacher>Soft and rough. <v Bob Keeshan>This <v Bob Keeshan>may sound simple to an adult, but children this age don't always <v Bob Keeshan>understand this concept as well as they seem to. <v Bob Keeshan>Or they may not realize that there are many ways of <v Bob Keeshan>comparing things. And they concentrate on size only <v Bob Keeshan>when putting things in order.
<v Teacher>Down the other side, now look right there. <v Teacher>All right. What if we say long, <v Teacher>longer. <v Kids>Longer, longer, longer, longer, longest. <v Bob Keeshan>But with <v Bob Keeshan>adult help, they can begin to understand how to put things in <v Bob Keeshan>order of other characteristics, such as weight. <v Teacher>All right. Here we go. Are you looking? I want your attention. <v Teacher>What happened? <v Teacher>Oh, yeah. <v Teacher>So if you get a box of candy for tomorrow, for Valentine's Day, how <v Teacher>big a box do you want? <v Child>A bigger. <v Bob Keeshan>Once a child begins to understand what ordering is all about, <v Bob Keeshan>she can begin to apply the ideas independently. <v Abigail>This is going to be the smallest heart.
<v Bob Keeshan>Abigail intends to make the next heart the smallest one. <v Bob Keeshan>And when it doesn't quite turn out that way, she has to rethink <v Bob Keeshan>her ordering plan. <v Abigail>It's a heart, but it's not the smallest. It's the biggest. <v Bob Keeshan>Parents who realize that children need practice understanding these relationships <v Bob Keeshan>can help their children simply by doing fun things with them. <v Abigail's Mother>You're doing such a good cutting job. You must have been practicing. <v Abigail>I have. <v Abigail's Mother>Do you work on that in school? <v Abigail>Yes, for Valentine's Day. <v Abigail's Mother>You don't cut any other time? <v Abigail>Yes I do. Sometimes here when I want to make Easter things. <v Abigail's Mother>And we've got these that you were doing in school. <v Abigail's Mother>Let's pretend this is a heart, okay.
<v Abigail's Mother>Which one's this? Is it-. <v Abigail>Small. <v Abigail's Mother>Small. You gonna put it in the same order as you've got these? <v Abigail's Mother>The small one first. <v Abigail's Mother>You want me to bring it down where you can reach it? OK. <v Abigail's Mother>There's your small one. Where's your smaller one? <v Abigail's Mother>Smaller. And if that were a heart, you would be your smallest. <v Abigail's Mother>That's right! <v Bob Keeshan>The one way children are all the same is that they're all different. <v Bob Keeshan>Some grow faster than others. <v Bob Keeshan>Some learn ideas earlier than others. <v Bob Keeshan>No matter where a child is in building her own learning scaffold, she's always <v Bob Keeshan>in the process of adding to it. <v Bob Keeshan>Learning all the time from everything around her. <v Bob Keeshan>This is one of the most important things for a parent to understand. <v Ann Muchow>You go to school and you get this education to be, you know, whatever it is <v Ann Muchow>you got to do in your career. <v Ann Muchow>But then all of a sudden this time comes in your life and you're changing careers.
<v Ann Muchow>You're going to be a parent and you haven't gone to school. <v Ann Muchow>You don't know you know anything about babies other than that they do <v Ann Muchow>need their diaper changed and they do need to be fed and know they don't sleep all of the <v Ann Muchow>time. [laughing]. <v Speaker>Daddy. <v Speaker>I thought I told you to knock before you come in here. <v Speaker>I didn't want to wake you. <v Speaker>Are you just coming in from a date? <v Speaker>No. <v Speaker>What time is it? <v Speaker>Well, I'm supposed to sleep until 7 0 0. <v Speaker>I don't want to be late, it's the first day of school. <v Speaker>First day of school, all right, let's get a move on. <v Speaker>I'm already dressed. <v Speaker>No, no, no. Let's put on something that's more understated. <v Speaker>All right, dear? <v Speaker>But I want to wear this.
<v Speaker>No, no, you look like a fortune teller. You don't want to dress like this. <v Speaker>We'll save this later for when you go to the prom. <v Speaker>All right. <v Speaker>You like that? OK. Put on something in your ?inaudible?, take off all the jewelry, put on <v Speaker>something without lace. Bye bye. <v Speaker>Bye bye. <v Speaker>Good bye. <v Bob Keeshan>Every parent has the same thoughts. <v Bob Keeshan>And by spending time talking with a child, asking questions, <v Bob Keeshan>even while doing all the things that have to be done like shopping or cooking. <v Bob Keeshan>A parent can help light up the learning scaffold. <v Bob Keeshan>The interest an adult shows in learning is contagious. <v Bob Keeshan>And once a child has caught the excitement of learning, excitement that comes <v Bob Keeshan>from the unfolding of the world, his mind springs <v Bob Keeshan>into action. [music plays] <v Bob Keeshan>Parents set patterns for learning with their attitudes and with activities <v Bob Keeshan>woven into daily experience.
<v Bob Keeshan>Adult interaction, real communication between parents and their children, teachers <v Bob Keeshan>and their students is the foundation for the kindergarten movement. <v Bob Keeshan>Frederick Froebel, the father of the kindergarten movement, became interested in <v Bob Keeshan>working with children to solve what he considered educational ills of the time, <v Bob Keeshan>some of which we probably still face today. <v Bob Keeshan>Many of the practices Froebel used in 18th century Germany <v Bob Keeshan>can still be found in kindergartens 200 years later. <v Bob Keeshan>He lovingly called learning devices, gifts, and his ideas <v Bob Keeshan>formed the basis for learning in today's kindergarten classrooms. <v Bob Keeshan>Susan Blow, a teacher and educator in St. Louis, Missouri, <v Bob Keeshan>started the first public kindergarten in this country. <v Bob Keeshan>She not only worked with teachers and children, but worked to guide parents <v Bob Keeshan>in ways to work with young children at home.
<v Bob Keeshan>The first kindergarten teachers spent part of each afternoon with mothers <v Bob Keeshan>in the homes. <v Bob Keeshan>Blow and Froebel recognized the importance of the home as a <v Bob Keeshan>learning environment. <v Bob Keeshan>School and home are partners, sharing a concern for every <v Bob Keeshan>child, giving each child an equal chance to develop to his <v Bob Keeshan>potential. Louis Pasteur, father of 5, said "Whenever <v Bob Keeshan>I approach a child, he inspires in me 2 sentiments, <v Bob Keeshan>tenderness for what he is, and respect for what he <v Bob Keeshan>may become." Writer William Saroyan probably said it best. <v Bob Keeshan>"Kids are always the only future the human race has. <v Bob Keeshan>Our children are our greatest resource and our investment in them <v Bob Keeshan>pays off again and again." Which <v Bob Keeshan>of these children will discover the cure for cancer, which
A Good Beginning Has No End
Producing Organization
Mississippi Educational Television
Contributing Organization
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia)
Mississippi Public Broadcasting (Jackson, Mississippi)
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Program Description
"In conjunction with the implementation of statewide public kindergartens in Mississippi, ETV produced 'A Good Beginning Has No End,' which was designed to help parents discover how important their involvement is as their child enters kindergarten to begin formal schooling. The program suggests skills to use and shows how other parents have used them effectively. The audience sees how the children learn with their parents, their teachers and on their own. "The major concepts presented are those that are recognized as crucial for early learners to acquire in order to build foundations for future academic demand in the classroom. Early learning concepts and principles will be emphasized. Also included is a little about the history of the kindergarten movement and its emphasis on parental involvement. Bob Keeshan (Captain Kangaroo) hosts the program."--1986 Peabody Awards entry form. This program shows footage of children learning, playing, and interacting with their families and peers along with information from experts on child development and early learning. Concepts that kids begin to learn while in kindergarten are discussed, include classification, numbers and counting, time and sequences, spatial relationships, comparisons, and the ordering of objects. The program also features excerpts from Peanuts, Sesame Street, and The Cosby Show.
Special: A Good Beginning Has No End. A Master.
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Producing Organization: Mississippi Educational Television
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The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia
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Format: U-matic
Duration: 0:58:35
Mississippi Public Broadcasting
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Generation: Master
Duration: 0:58:35
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Chicago: “A Good Beginning Has No End,” 1986-09-09, The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, Mississippi Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 26, 2022,
MLA: “A Good Beginning Has No End.” 1986-09-09. The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, Mississippi Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 26, 2022. <>.
APA: A Good Beginning Has No End. Boston, MA: The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, Mississippi Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from