This module was very helpful in helping me understand the importance of how the environment itself (not necessarily the materials in it) impact the child and his/her ability to learn. it was powerful to learn how something as simple as wall color is very important to consider to insure the children have a quality stress- free learning experience on a day to day basis. Having attended Lifting the Standards and going through the process of Accreditation, I had already rearranged and updated my space, since beginning my child care program in 2008. However, this module proved to be an excellent refresher, as I did take away many new nuggets to consider implementing as I go forward in my business.

My space is separate from my home, however I have arranged it to maintain a home-like feel. Over time I have accumulated a large quantity of materials and was one to purchase from the pricey school catalogs. This module helped me realize that I could venture into finding more economical ways to provide storage for items that are child friendly for the space. Another very interesting part of the module was the segment on understanding the power of Open-Ended Materials. In the beginning I thought everything had to be a “toy” with a specific use or purpose. Over time I have learned that children simply learn from their environment and having natural experiences with the items they can see, touch, and explore. I have also learned that these can be natural found materials that are around us everyday. Allowing the children to explore these natural items in their own way helps them to stretch their thinking and learning capacity thus furthering their cognitive, physical and social/emotional development. I truly enjoyed learning new ideas and refreshing my skills via this online module.