As educators of young children, we are very aware of children's ability to take responsibility, sustain concentration and understand their local community. In many ways the children support the day to day running of the Nursery: helping to set up provision, delivering the registers, welcoming visitors, being consulted with when developing learning areas, tidying up, washing up, using real crockery and glass, working with real tools in meaningful experiences, managing their own feeding and self-care, sorting out disputes, helping each other (we could go on).
We have noticed the positive impact our many local and further-afield trips have on children with regards to self-esteem, confidence, relationships and language and communication. To this end we are developing a 'shopping partner' system which aims to support the needs of the children who will take responsibility over the course of a week: writing and reading the shopping lists, collecting money from Pam in the office, walking to the shops and market, interacting with the shopkeepers, making choices about buying responsibly, paying the money, carrying the shopping back (in our eco-friendly backpacks)and unpacking it at Nursery.
We are noticing that trust and responsibility in this task is encouraging children to blossom.