What if the future of our children was played in kindergarten? - The360 Lifestyle

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  • Sunday, December 1, 2019

    What if the future of our children was played in kindergarten?

    What if the future of our children was played in kindergarten?

    Even the Minister of Education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, wants to "rethink" the "little school". At the time of the child king and the race for awakening, parents have become intractable about the choice of kindergarten for their children. Because their future depends on it? 


    "Everything is played before 6 years," said Dr. Fitzhugh Dodson in his bestseller on education, published in 1970. Everything, that is to say, walking, language, cleanliness, socialization, creativity, self-awareness, self-confidence... Before 6 years? Little or no between birth and re-entry at CP.

    If almost all psychologists have since replied that no, nothing is definitively played before the end of infancy, one thing is certain: the child becomes a "big" smaller and smaller, to the point of knowing (almost) do everything before 6 years. More awake, more mobile, more mature emotionally, more intellectually nurtured. Watered at every moment by the digital age in which he was born and evolves. Victim, too (especially?), Of the "race for awakening" imposed by his parents. Result: he no longer goes to kindergarten to learn to hold a fork and go hunting. He already knows how to do all that. At age 4, he is eager to learn to read and dreams of writing his first name attached without trembling.

    Aware of this double-edged boom (too early a pressure would clearly put some students in check), the Ministry of Education eventually renovate the kindergarten, so that it is no longer a daycare or a "small CP". Since the start of the 2015 academic year, it has been a cycle in its own right, which gives more space to discovery, manipulation and sensory development, of the body and language. "At three and a half, children need to play, you can not ask them to sit in their chairs for six hours a day," defended Mr. Sihr, general secretary of SNUipp-FSU, the first primary union. . But then should we worry if children prefer to learn to count than to make a hen out of plasticine? Worse, are the parents right to want to replace Mr. Patate with Mr. Perfect?

    More and more successful children

    We met the team of the Rocroy Saint Vincent de Paul primary school (Paris 10th), a private institution under contract from kindergarten to the end, whose high school is also in the top 10 of Parisian high schools. And the report of the teachers is without appeal: from one year to the next, parents put more and more pressure on their children. "From the middle section, they buy CP's yearbooks of the year, ask us how they can get their 3-year-olds to work on weekends, urge us to teach them how to read," describes Julie Grange, 36 years old, teacher for thirteen years. Their ultimate dream (and secret)? Make them jump a class. "They come to tell us that their daughter knows how to read, that she is bored, that she wants to write, that she wants to train at night. This same child who has oddly eczema patches on the arms... ", alert Émeline Pereira, 35 years old, teacher in double level, average and big section. For the teacher, the pressure exerted by the parents leads in spite of them to a great stress in the children, easily discouraged and often in imbalance. "We are facing children who have brains that perform well but do not master basic gestures. At age 4, they know the syllabic association and digital rhyme up to 30, but do not know how to zip their coat! "

    Everything follows, for the psychoeducator Brigitte Prot, from this great novelty that is the development of a "school strategy" for children. "Parents learn from their own professional lives. They are aware of the importance of diplomas, and even more so of those obtained in prestigious schools. They know that the first will be first! "A way to excuse them, these poor spawners, who ultimately want only one thing: put their offspring as soon as possible on the right track, the sooner safe from" crisis". A crisis that they, they, took full force when they leave school.

    Between desire for the future and a return to safe values

    "Protecting has become one of their primary responsibilities," writes Monique de Kermadec, author of The Early Child Today (Albin Michel, 2015). "Assuming that material security depends on employment which is itself dependent on education, parents operate a kind of countdown for their children: from the big school, they envisage the best preparatory class, the best high school, the best college and so... the best kindergarten. "We're here. Without falling into educational delirium, one projects one's child further and further, earlier and earlier.

    Words nuanced by Anne-Elizabeth d'Hermy, director of the primary school of Rocroy Saint Vincent de Paul. If she admits that yes, "parents are more and more anxious about the future of their children," she also notes that they are sometimes, quite simply, afraid of the education of tomorrow. More than a desire to turn their children into scholarly monkeys, she sees in parents the desire to "return to safe values ​​and a real educational setting". "In a context of crisis and insecurity, they naturally demand a caring and caring environment for their children," says this head of establishment for five years, fully involved in his duty to support families. "Beyond the result and the good grade, they want their children to understand the meaning of the effort and the taste for the job done." A way to make them succeed, of course, but to get them to find the keys to do it, especially. "The little kindergarten section is a mini-society. Children are there to weave their first social bonds, take their first steps in the fulfillment of their person, become responsible beings and open to others. Our mission is not to make them small ministers."

    When kindergartens look like prepas

    Some schools, out of the ordinary, are there for that. They are called "prep maternal" or "elite maternal". In Paris, the best known are Jeannine-Manuel Bilingual Active School (EABJM), in the 15th arrondissement, and the Alsatian School, in the 6th. Each one his strength, each his audience. The EAJBM focuses on academic excellence, the Alsatian on the excellent network. In the first one, the students are subjected to an entrance examination as soon as the average section (to miss the "test of the guy" before the committee of recruitment becomes the worst nightmare of the contenders of 3 years). The price to pay for a year in its minicrack boxes? That of a business school (between 5,000 and 7,500 € - half board). Unfortunately, neither of us wanted to answer our questions.

    Along with these out-of-the-ordinary institutions, alternative schools. In an article published in July 2015, we mentioned Montessori, Freinet, Steiner, Decroly... The Hexagon now has 352 schools engaged in innovation or experimentation and accompanied by the Ministry of Education. Structures that appeal to more and more affluent parents - again, the annual tuition fees are close to those of HEC. Flexible schedules, art awareness, part of the "courses" in English, learning at your own pace (supposed to favor early children)... "Founders of Google, Amazon, Wikipedia... Most giants from the Silicon Valley passed by the Montessori school ", illustrates the educational psychologist Brigitte Prot. Even George of Cambridge, Prince William's son, joined the label in Norfolk in early January. At 2 and a half years old.

    Finally, Jacques Attali was perhaps a visionary when he wrote, in his report "For a European model of higher education": "The majority of students received major competitions such as those of the École Normale Supérieure or École Polytechnique come from a dozen high schools. By continuing to the point of absurdity, we could probably even establish that the majority of the pupils of the greatest French schools have begun their schooling in one or two hundred nursery classes! "Until the absurd, you say?

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