Behind the Name

Standard

Discovery Dome is a concept I thought up almost three years ago. When I was thinking about what to name my project, I wanted a name, logo and slogan that encompassed my passion for play-based learning, exploration and community. I also wanted a subtle way to hint at the Muslim-inclined subject matter.

I consulted with my husband and with my awesome graphic designer (she can be contacted here) and finally settled on the name Discovery Dome, with the tagline “Learning together through play”. The discovery aspect alluded to exploration and learning and the dome was a reference to a mosque – an Islamic place of worship that has historically been a place of learning and community building. That idea can be extended to the entire world as Muslims believe that the the whole world is essentially a mosque – a place of worship and remembrance of God. There is a lot of reflection and awakenings that happen within mosques and I wanted Discovery Dome to similarly be a place of reflection.

My designer worked with me to capture the “world” which served two purposes for me: 1. It hinted to the multicultural nature of the products and programming I hoped to have, and 2. It alluded to my belief that the whole world is a place rich in learning and play. By tweaking its shape and adding a little crescent to the top, the world looked more like the dome of the mosque.

She worked with me to adjust the colour palette and font to my liking, and captured the playful/artistic nature of the project by making the continents look more like splatters of paints than perfect representations.

dd-final

I knew when I started Discovery Dome that it would evolve through different phases in terms of what the main focus was. Initially, I was concentrating on retail but I am quite pleased that it’s moving more towards the education piece as that’s where my passion lies. So I invite you to join me in this journey of learning together through play 🙂

 

 

I Like Pumpkins- Post #7: Reflections

Standard

When I decided to do some focused work around pumpkins this year, I knew there was a danger of traditional thematic learning hijacking best practices around early learning. While I know the experiences and activities were valuable, I had a nagging voice in the back of my mind telling me the approach wasn’t right – it wasn’t responsive, nor was it guided by H’s big questions.

I thought about developmental domains that were underrepresented and activity ideas that could enhance them, like content surrounding growth and gardening, additional sensory experiences like making and playing with pumpkin spice playdough, tangibly exploring different types of pumpkins and cooking and eating more pumpkin-based dishes. I also became acutely aware of the lack of opportunity to engage with art. But again, these ideas were coming from me and not necessarily respecting H’s interests.

Not only does this go against the vision I have for myself as an educator, but it also feels uncomfortable – I just spent the entire summer planning environments emergently (something I will share in future posts). And here I was planning and implementing around a theme. Sigh.

Moving forward, I want to dig deeper. Having meetings is a good place to start. What this entails is meeting with the children and determining their interests, what they want to learn about, their existing knowledge about the topic and what skills they need to develop. Then webbing and altering those webs so that they are responsive as time progresses.

I have a few more posts to draft and publish about activities we’ve done recently, but moving forward, a lot of my time is being spent on observing and planning.

I look forward to sharing the process with you!