My California grandchildren were in town this past week. I was lucky enough to get to babysit my 2 month-old granddaughter and my 3 1/2 year-old grandson while my daughter and kindergarten granddaughter got their hair cut. We had a great afternoon. While the baby slept, my grandson and I made cupcakes to surprise the other family members. We made a big mess, but we ended up with yummy cupcakes and eventually a clean kitchen. This experience reminded me that sometimes it is messy to give children life-learning experiences. Adults who refuse to make messes are probably not doing what is best for children. I used to get raised eyebrows occasionally for now wearing dress clothing when I was teaching kindergarten. I found that if I wore nice jeans, I didn’t hesitate to get out the paints and get on the floor with the children. Raising resilient children is a messy job sometimes. Get your hands dirty!
Manager of Educational Programs, Excelligence Learning Corporation
University Clinical Instructor
Credentials and Accolades:
M.Ed., Early Childhood Education
1996 Utah Teacher of the Year
1998-1999 President, Utah AEYC
2011 Outstanding Teaching Award, University of Utah
John Funk has worked in early childhood since 1979. He taught preschool, 1st and 2nd grades and kindergarten. He worked as an early childhood specialist for a large school district and managed early childhood services for Salt Lake CAP Head Start. He is past president of the Utah AEYC. As an early childhood, reading, and literacy consultant for the last decade, he has written on early childhood subjects and products for McGraw Hill and Leap Frog. He served on the editorial panel for Young Children magazine published by NAEYC.
Currently, John is the Manager of Educational Programs for Excelligence Learning Corporation, and he teaches courses in early childhood, children’s literature, classroom management, reading methods and supervises student teachers at the University of Utah.