My childhood was too long ago to have a photo of this, but the object I would choose is a “sculpture” of a woman, painted with gold gilt, that I created when I was a little girl. How was this not just a standard little art project? The spark for it came from my father, reflecting on the “clay soil” in one of our fields. I reasoned that, if the soil was clay-based, it had potential to shape, and I worked to collect the clay from a stream bed that ran through the field. Pretty frustrating, as of course it wasn’t pure clay so there were many false starts–but I was super-proud of the time the whole thing–materials and vision–came together in a little gold woman, Victorian hoop-skirt clad. I don’t really think there was a learning spiral here, though. I didn’t go further, refine my artistic skills, become a sculptor–I just moved on to something else. What would have been needed for me to take the project further? Maybe a genetic love that Papert talks about…
The childhood object that influenced my life would probably be crayons. Crayons was the starting point of being able to express myself and giving me the chance to show what I was imagining in my head through drawings. Coloring as a child helped lead me down a creative path and wanting to share what I was thinking through visuals. I also found that through the years that if I didn’t love art as much as I do then it probably would have not lead me to wanting to become a teacher. The reason why I love the idea of becoming a teacher is because of the fact that I knew that every single day would be a new day to be creative and also to get the chance to see the creativity that would come from my students.
One object from my childhood that interested and influenced me was a small desk in the corner of our house. My mother had found the desk and refurbished it, colorfully painting the legs and then painting the top with chalkboard paint. Many times throughout my childhood I would sit at this desk and do homework or - along with my three sisters - use the desk to play school. The desk was special both because my mother made it and because it played a role in encouraging my love for learning that has now manifested into my studying to become an educator.
(Not an exact picture, but it is a close representation)
Thank you for the trip down memory lane. I too had a spirograph and played with it for hours. Your post also resonated with Papert’s Essay [Gears of My Childhood](http://SpeechandProductionNewsReportingandJournalismYearlongProject 2). I saw the evolution of your childhood toy from box, pen & paper to digital complete with how-to and the mathematical “why” behind the design.
When I was about 5 or 6 I received a Light Bright. Putting the plastic pegs into the grid and having them light up was almost magical. The kit came with preset designs and once those were gone you had to rely on your own imagination to create new designs.
My grandpa had Lincoln Logs and it was the best toy ever!
No rules and durability.
I spent many hours playing with my brother and his Lincoln Logs. It caused you to really use your imagination to build homes, barns, fences, etc. Great educational toy!
If I were to consider what one object really affected my childhood, it would be the portable cassette player. God put a love of music in me. Music has been my means of expression and stress relief for my entire life. I sing when I’m happy, when I’m sad, when I’m angry, when I’m hurt. Music is my therapy. Every sentence you speak brings a song to my mind. My mother was the same way. She wrote many songs. My father saved up S & H Green Stamps to buy her a portable cassette recorder in the lat 70’s. I was around 5 years-old. My mother would record her songs on it, so she could remember the words flowing through her mind. She knew my mind worked like hers, so she bought me a package of cassettes and allowed me to use her recorder sing my thoughts and feelings into. Today I do the same thing with my son, who has that same musical draw. Only we don’t use a cassette recorder anymore! This definitely changed my life.
That is really cool that God uses music in you life that way! I have many fond memories of listening to cassette tapes when we were driving around town growing up. How cool that God gave the same musical draw to your son. It truly runs in the family.
The objects in my childhood that affected my thinking and learning were my dolls. My dolls were and still are special to me because whether I knew it or not, they were helping prepare me for what I would do “when I grew up” which is being a teacher. I would play with them for hours enacting different scenarios like going to the doctor, flying on an airplane, going to the library, having a birthday party, going shopping, playing school, and so many others. These experiences helped cultivate a love of children and giving children different experiences which is something teachers should strive to do. When I would play with them, I would have to think through the different scenarios and contemplate the “props” I would need to enact them. Also, when something did not go the way I planned, I had to problem solve and would, therefore, learn from those experiences. I am very grateful for the experiences I have had with my dolls and the lessons I have learned from engaging in play with them.
I love how your dolls were so special in your life and how they taught you to plan and execute scenarios. Growing up my dolls were special to me too. I have many memories of my sisters and I playing with our dolls and taking old cardboard boxes to make schools and houses for them.
Thank you. That is so fun that you and your sisters used cardboard boxes to make schools and houses. Very creative!
Growing up, I was always in love with music. I come from a very musically inclined family so it has always been apart of me even before I was born. My mom can talk about memories of me singing in my crib when I was a baby and how when I would go to dance class I wouldn’t remember any of the dance moves, but would have the words to the songs memorized. Once I turned 12 my parents bought me my first boom box. It was this massive pink and silver boom box and I just adored that thing. I would sit in my room and put on concerts with my hairbrush microphone and my audience of Barbie dolls and stuffed animals.
Even to this day, music has really made me the person I am. Growing up music was that one thing that always created new ways of learning for me. Whether that be learning to play new instruments because of a song I heard or even by memorizing vocab from school to a set song. As a future educator, I want children to experience a love for music like I had growing up. By taking things that they may love from their social world and merging it with their academic world i believe you can see real connections made in children’s brains.
My favourite childhood object was a kaleidoscope camera. It had various colours and pictures inside it. It made me feel like I was in a whole other world. Unfortunately, I do not have a picture of it. It was interesting exploring different colours and shapes. It taught me to see the world in a different way and brought joy to my life. I lived in poverty at the time and did not have access to many toys.
One of my fondest childhood memories is sitting in the floor at my grandmother’s house playing with my farm. Growing up on a farm, I was always eager to feed the cows and help out any way that I could. This “toy” allowed me to live out my dreams of owning my own farm, as a child. Now, as an adult, my husband and I are working hard to acquire our own little farm and raise our children with cows, horses, and all kinds of other farm animals.
My childhood toy/activity was playing house with barbies. My sister and I would pretend we each had our own family and play house. All through life I have notice and others can agree that I have a nurturing spirit about me. Gets me thinking maybe this came from playing house with me sister.
Thinking back on my childhood, I can remember how important my dolls were. I always had a doll with me no matter where I went. I think it is from those dolls that I have grown to want to nurture which has lead me into teaching!
My childhood object would have to be a Sony Cybershot digital camera. My parents had one for family use, but I always found myself playing with it to snap pictures of my toys or my pets. The older I got, the more I experimented with individual settings, focus, ISO, shutter speed, and other things. I began practicing with different perspectives and even began staging my photos to make my toys (usually of animals) seem more realistic. I believe it helped me in my learning and thinking because it allowed me to have an experimental and tangible interaction with art and photography, which has followed me into adulthood. It motivated me to research and learn about all of its settings and their meanings, which I think has really influenced my love of photography today.