Jr/Sr Kindergarten: The Benefits of a Multiage Classroom
One child, a senior kindergartner, chooses a reading work, The Command Cards. He invites a younger child, four years old, to do the work with him. She accepts and they set up a work mat together and place the work on the mat. The five-year old chooses a card and reads aloud the command written on it: clap your hands. The four-year old happily obliges, giggling as she claps a few times. They proceed to go through most of the cards together, the older child practicing reading skills, the younger child working on her listening skills, both practicing cooperation.
In a traditional school, with all kids the same age, a moment like this would not occur. The dynamic between older and younger students can create a positive, nurturing learning environment for everyone.
"The goal of early childhood education should be to advocate the child's own natural desire to learn"