Scéalta – The Early Childhood Ireland Blog

< Back to Blog

Connecting and Documenting Through a Virtual Platform


Tuesday 19 May 2020

As I came in from the “Super Shed” after telling a story, I looked around my quiet empty
pre-school room. I thought about all of the time and financial investment that all early years educators put into the materials and resources that they use to provide their quality curriculum. As early years educators we really could do with shelves on our ceilings. I look at my phone and I have been sent a photo from a child that attended my pre-school Giddy-Ups (before COVID-19) and it instantly lifted my spirits. The photo is of a drawing of a butterfly, from the story “The Very Hungry Caterpillar’, which is a story I read during our ‘Super Shed Story Time’, and it’s been done with so much care and attention to detail. I look at the picture and then my empty walls in the pre-school.

The reflection process starts with the procedures needed to raise children’s profiles in the group at this time and to connect children through their artistic learning journeys. I am mindful that a display on walls by the time we return to pre-school may clutter and over stimulate the children as there are many photos of work coming in through the e-mail address. The dilemma is that the display of the children’s work is there for a limited period as new work is done but what happens to the work when it is taken down. Often storage of the children’s work and displaying children’s artwork can be challenging particularly if you have a large group and are sharing with parents so they can support their children’s emergent interests at home.

As a parent myself I remember displaying my children’s drawings and paintings on the fridge and in their bedrooms. After a while, their pictures would become torn and I would save some, but it was just not practical to keep them all. I would love to see some of the work now that is lost as I have four children and my eldest is coming up to his twenty first birthday! As educators we let the children decide what work to send home, put in a scrapbook, and as parents later-on we store our children’s artwork in a memory box, or in other ways!

As early years educators we use reflection as a tool, constantly planning, doing, and then re-viewing the policies and systems that we have in place in our pre-schools. I felt that it was really important to showcase all of the children’s work from the stories. It needed to be documented in a way that it could be shared. So, I decided to set up a “Super Shed Gallery” so as when children were sending in their story requests they could also send in photos of their work. This gallery is a tool to promote creativity, imagination, and conversation at home.

Now the story requests and drawings are coming into the email address ‘supershedstories’, from siblings of the children who are coming to the pre-school (post COVID-19) and children in the local community. This gallery also facilitates the re-connection of the children in the pre-school to each other through their artwork. By working in synergy children, parents and educators can appreciate their child’s work by logging into a virtual gallery. As many of us keep a diary and few families print out photos anymore most photos are stored digitally. The “Super Shed Gallery” is multifaceted as when children return to the pre-school this gallery will have documented the children’s emergent interests in action during this time from the stories. It facilitates reflection on the creative journey that the children had in their homes at this difficult time and could be a starting point for planning the curriculum when the children return to pre-school (hopefully after COVID-19)!

It is also a virtual platform to re-connect children with their friends and connect children that have the same emergent interest from the story requests. It also acts as a platform to raise the well-being of children at this difficult time and promotes parental involvement within the pre-school setting. The Aistear curriculum depicts learning as a “journey”. The gallery is a timely shareable reflection tool, it can be revisited for pleasure or educational curricular planning purposes. Parents are logging onto You Tube and visiting the “Super Shed Gallery” with their children. It is accessible to grandparents and other important people in children’s lives that they are unable to visit as this time. It promotes conversation for children about their friends, teachers, and lots of other things that they may miss about attending pre-school. At this time, I know all educators are supporting children’s well-being and re-connection through the children’s artistic learning journeys, but I just wanted to share the catalyst that storytelling can be in children’s artistic learning journeys.




Samantha Hallows - Hello, my name is Samantha Hallows. I am the owner/manager of Giddy-Ups pre-school. We are based in Knocklyon, Dublin 16 and have been in operation for the last ten years.  I am very worried that at the moment parents and young children may feel a disconnection between them and my pre-school. I spent a long time thinking about what I could do to bridge the gap between pre-school and home during this difficult time. I thought back to the thing that the children love the most in my setting, and that was hearing stories being read in our Super Shed in the garden. I thought about how I could read stories to the children that they would like, I was reflecting in this moment on Aistear and the importance of capturing children’s emergent interests. I thought about all the books I had in my setting, ones that had been read to the children already, some of their favourites and ones that had not yet been read!

0 comments Comments

Comments are closed.

Pedagogical leaders(1) Scéalta Blog(106) Italy(1) Learning Stories Award(3) Creativity(7) Playdough(1) Learning Story(1) Oireachtas(1) lockdown(1) Scents(1) International Narratives(1) Learning Stories(9) NCCA(4) COVID-19 landscape(1) women in research(1) experience(1) Interactions(3) Adverse Childhood Experiences(1) documentation(4) Blocks(1) Time Out(1) Limerick(1) Summer(2) outdoors(4) Adoption(1) Learning Journal(2) structure(1) Leprechauns(1) Winter(1) Feeding(1) Minister Katherine Zappone(1) Awards(2) Frosty the Snowman(1) CCTV(1) NAEYC(1) risk(2) dining experiences(1) Montessori(3) Environment(2) outdoor environment(1) Early Childhood Care and Education(2) Sleep(1) democratic citizens(1) quarantine(2) AIM(2) Looking Back(1) Vivian Gussin Paley(1) Sequins(1) Rich Documentation(1) Deirdre Rogers(1) Fire Safety(1) grandchild(1) keep in touch(1) dogs(1) Book Review(1) Opportunities(1) preschools(1) Looking Forward(1) movement behaviours(1) Nutrition(1) Unesco(1) Children's Book Club(1) Engagement(1) Educator of the Year Award(3) Confident(1) Spiders(1) Malaguzzi(1) Irish Childhood Bereavement Network(1) Vietnam(1) worries(1) Inspired Practice Award(6) family time(1) Leadership(1) gender bias(1) listening(1) Socioemotional development(1) Annual Conference 2019(1) Advocacy(1) Mixed age groups(3) Japan(1) Party(1) Inspections(1) Magda Gerber(1) Treasure(1) Imagination(3) scéalta(58) Irish(1) Magic(1) Role play(1) Support(1) blog(56) Norway(2) Reggio(1) books(5) Policy and Implementation Panel(1) Equality & Inclusion Guidelines Training(1) Map(1) Women(1) Síolta QAP(1) Thank you(1) Learning Story Awards(2) Laughter(1) Leargas(1) Gratitude(1) trust(4) Investment(2) Mathematicians(1) ECEC Setting(2) emotional environment(2) partnership(1) Loving Relationships(2) Time(1) Digital Devices(1) dining(1) Pobal sector profile(1) Kerry(1) Supernanny(1) Pobal(1) behavioural science(1) Academic Skills(1) Frustrations(1) Special Needs Assistants(1) Identity(5) National Pyjama Day(1) Performing(1) Employee(1) Story(2) Exploring and Thinking(1) First 5 strategy(1) Xbox(1) Graduation(1) memories(1) Diversity(1) National Childcare Scheme(1) Care routines(1) Seanchaí(1) Large Doll Play(1) Sociodramatic play(1) Department of Children and Youth Affairs(2) presentation skills(1) annual conference(1) playleader(1) Storytelling(8) TUSLA(1) Online(1) Photographs(1) reopening(1) Budget 2019(2) The Lullaby Book(1) Nuturing interactions(1) Exit interview(1) Maths Week Ireland(1) Names(1) School Age Childcare(2) Aistear(132) Wesco(1) play pod(1) Lego(2) Family wall(1) early childhood ireland research(1) preschool(4) youdoodle(1) Valentine's Day(3) learning bias(1) Our Little Seed(1) Snakes(1) ears(1) bloom app(1) Whole Group(1) play pods(2) Covid-19 lockdown(1) Visual Impairment(1) phone apps(1) Running(1) Loss(1) pets(1) Exploratory Play(1) MA(1) Reggio Emilia(2) Interaction(1) interacting(2) Hand Hygiene(2) racism(1) Online Research Symposium(3) Inter-generational learning(2) Budget 2020(1) Sweets(1) Study Trip(1) Trade union(1) online training(1) Reflective Practice(1) Inter-generational(2) creche(1) Smiles(1) Training(3) coronavirus(1) Children's Research Network(2) World Health Organisation(1) UD(1) early childhood(1) Leaders in Practice(1) QRF(1) Seas Suas(1) Quality(4) iOS(1) Nordic model(1) social science(1) Dr Mary O'Kane(1) E.coli(1) emotional well-being(1) Brain(1) Afghanistan(1) National Research Conference 2019(1) early years research(3) Decision Making(1) role playing(1) Childcare Barometer 2018(1) Mo Scéal(1) Positivity(1) risk assessment(1) Trick or treat(1) RIE philosphy(1) Engineers Week(2) UN(1) EM Standing(1) reopening ireland(1) Mental Health(4) Kilkenny(1) GDPR(1) educating(1) Builders(1) Anthony Semann(1) Educators(2) Kindness(1) Reopening Childcare(1) European Early Childhood Education Research Association(2) science week(2) Laugh(1) Early Years Educators(3) Universal Design(2) Educator Award - Leader in Practice(1) Wonder(1) Irish Early Years Research & Practice Seminar 2018(1) Growing up Outdoors(2) baby room(1) DCYA(6) Halloween(2) Providing Leadership to the First 5(1) UK(1) Valerie Gaynor(1) imotion(1) research(8) AsIAm(2) Giraffe(2) aistear blog(3) Eritrea(1) an post(1) Toby Bears Camping Trip(1) UNICEF report(1) Capable(1) Partnership with Families Innovation Award(2) Ceremony(1) Orla Kenny(1) Awards 2018(3) Playschool(1) Covid pandemic(3) Craft(1) Covid19 crisis(1) Settling in(4) Policy(2) Empathy(1) under 3's(3) learners(1) Belonging(3) Sustainability(3) Autism(4) show and tell(1) Nonverbal(1) Albert Einstein(1) primary education(1) New Appointments(1) Care-giving routines(1) Workplace Relations(3) ICBN(1) Favouritism(1) supportive environments(2) Obesity(1) Prexit(1) Fabric(1) Thanks(1) Meal time(1) Routines(2) Return to Work Training(1) keezy(1) Painting(1) Pedagogy(2) Mark Twain(1) christmas(9) Cognitive development(1) play therapy(1) Drawing(2) Research Conference 2019(1) Child Care(1) feisty(1) Awards 2019(1) ReCreate(2) Pretend Play(1) Youtube Series(1) Through the looking glass(1) journey(1) Digital(1) Educator - Leader in Practice Award(1) College(1) play stories(2) Inclusion(3) Maynooth(1) Mealtimes(1) Iceland(2) Exploring(1) food(1) respect(5) UN Sustainable Development Goals(1) babies(7) mushrooms(1) Administrative Burden(1) Pre-School Services(1) ELC(1) natural environment(1) Flowers(1) outdoor play(7) Twitter(1) Building Resilience(1) Glitter(2) Croatia(1) Gardening(1) GoToMeeting app(1) Wendy Lee(4) Early Childhood Ireland’s National Early Childhood Research Conference 2019(1) Motor neuron disease(1) Emergent Curriculum(1) learning(19) Event Guide(1) early childhood educator(2) Europe(1) Professionalisation(5) toddlers(3) INTO(1) Kids Own(1) Shoes(1) Aistear Siolta in Action(1) child-centred approach(1) curriculum(7) Grief(1) Ariana Pucci(1) child safeguarding(1) stories(3) Cork(1) Creative(1) Small World Play(1) European Project(1) Identity and Belonging(4) Maria Montessori(1) National Holiday(1) Competent(1) science(3) United Nations(1) Patterns(1) Independence(1) Skillnet(1) conference(1) Margy Whalley(1) PIP(1) Traditions(2) Leadership for INClusion in the Early Years(1) Dance(1) Culture(2) Early Learning and Care Centres(1) General Data Protection Regulation(1) social media policy(1) Interests(1) Horizon 2020(1) Degree(1) early years learning(1) Siolta blog(8) value(1) ECIAwards20(1) Body Language(1) Growing up in Ireland(3) Rising to the Challenge(2) code of ethics(1) Traffic Lights(1) Treasure Chest(1) National Early Childhood Research Conference(2) National Council for Curriculum and Assessment(1) Potential(1) Document Learning(1) timekeeping skills(1) Access and Inclusion Model(2) early year’s classrooms(1) overhear(1) Learning through Storytelling(2) Shapes(2) SPICE Framework(1) multi-generational community(1) National Bereaved Children's Awareness Week(1) Confidence(1) Performance Management(1) Department of Education and Skills(1) Reggio Children Network(1) Masterclass(2) Teamwork(1) Pen green(1) Magnavacchi(1) Aldo Fortunati(4) Academics(1) friendships(1) Impact(1) linc(1) Cork Institute of Technology(1) Titles(1) Children's Voice(1) staying connected(1) EECERA 2016(1) maternity health(1) annual awards(1) outdoor space(3) Home Corner(1) Affordability(1) story time(2) Trauma-Sensitive(1) ECEC(4) ERASMUS+(3) Equality(1) Awards Night(1) Early Years(1) Window(1) COVID-19 crisis(1) Universal Design Guidelines(1) Iraq(1) TOY Programme(1) code of professional responsibility(1) Annual Conference 2017(2) Change(1) education system(1) man up(1) parents(7) Self-regulation(1) The Play and Learning in the Early Years(1) Participation(2) awards 2020(1) Arts(1) Your place(1) Proceedings Journal(1) eating(1) pablo(1) Elders(1) Mantra(1) Human Resources(1) life long learning(1) STEM(3) Montessori & Early Childhood Professionals Ireland(1) built environments(1) Reading Time(2) Decisions(1) National Annual Awards 2020(1) Early Childhood Ireland National Awards(2) Plants(1) children’s learning(1) Minister for Children and Youth Affairs(1) curiosity(3) Community involvement(1) Engineering Ireland(1) Maths Week(1) childcare services(1) inspiring interactions(1) Arlene Forster(1) listen(1) The Jelly King(1) Rituals(1) Certificate(1) collaboration(1) Engineering(3) RTE Investigates(1) peer group(1) Infection Control(1) Super Shed Stories(2) Inspiring Practice(1) children development(1) routine(2) TRAP(1) Syria(1) Meet the Members(1) San Miniato(4) Buddies(1) Dr. Emer Ring(1) Sport(1) Irish guidelines(1) Aistear Siolta Practice Guide(1) UNCRC(2) responsive relationships(1) Social Skills(1) learning hub(2) developing motor skills(1) conversations(1) Penguins(1) Self Help Skills(1) budget(1) Early Years Education(1) emotions(2) Early Childhood Ireland(10) Early Learning and Care(2) Research and Professional Learning(1) Appreciation(1) UK Government(1) preschool settings(1) homeschool(1) Little Buddies(1) educarer(1) Games(2) Wilenski(1) dublin(2) Research Seminar(1) Easter(1) Graduate(1) risky play(2) animals(2) Santa(2) National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education(1) gender stereotype(1) early years settings(1) IGL(1) Together Old and Young Programme(1) Jillian van Turnhout(1) Effect of Lockdown(1) ECCE(7) Mayo(1) Síolta(139) Inspirational(2) Sessional service(1) Art(6) Primary School(3) art of the relationship(1) Self-Esteem(1) early life(1) relationships(18) Family(1) Touch(1) Vertical grouping(1) planning(1) guardian(1) Workforce(1) Facebook(1) HR(1) Behaviour(3) Fantasy play(1) CPD(1) Staff Motivation(1) june29(1) Celebrate(1) MECPI(1) Trade Unions(1) Mindfulness(3) Wrapping paper(1) Recycle(1) Child mental health(1) Children(8) Consent(1) apps for children(1) research submissions(1) Challenges(1) COVID-19(18) community(5) Liz Kerrins(1) Snacks(1) Maynooth University(2) refugees(1) Early Childhood Education(1) Health(2) Plastic(1) Infectious diseases(1) child-centric(1) Visitors(1) Childcare(3) Regulation 23(1) quarantine kids(1) Buddy Bench(1) Snack Time(1) child led(1) EECERA(1) meals(3) Bereavement(2) Stress(2) COVID-19 Reopening(2) partnership with families(1) Síolta Quality Assurance programme(1) Children and families(2) Mud kitchens(1) Relaxation(1) play(37) World book day(1) Return to Work(1) scientific and artistic processes(1) Technology(3) Kindness Challenge(1) transitions(10) Tuscan Approach(2) Light table(1) Fee Play(1) continual professional development(1) bonds(1) LINC Award for Leadership in Inclusion(2) Sculptures(1) Children's Rights(3) Exclusion(1) Celebrations(4) SAC(1) Breathing(2) Weather(1) Scéalta Book Review(1) upskilling(1) education(2) DES Inspection(1) Maths(6) Trigonometry(1) Mount Everest(1) First 5 transitions for children award(1) Workplace well-being(1) purpose(1) Death(2) Inspired Practice Awards(1) CIT(1) social media(2) communication(4) Covid response(2) Christmas Creativity(2) environments(1) Love(3) Book Club(2) Communicating(1) Intention(1) St. Patrick's Day(1) Communications(1) University(1) Sustainable(1) healthy eating policies(1) mental health problems(1) National Awards 2018(2) Upcycling(1) Queues(1) First 5(1) Counting(1) Yoga(1) Childhood(2) Exercise(1) democracy(1) COVID(3) Thinking(1) Well-Being(10) Budget 2018(1) Jenga(1) Line-ups(1) Learning journals(1) Maternity Leave(1) Design(1) Recycling(2) STEAM(1) Qualifications(1) Arithmetic(1) Anxiety(2) reading(6) Funding(1) development(9) Music(3) National Awards 2019(1) worldbookday(1) Biting(1)


Site maintained and developed by Cloud Nine