|Editor||Future Citizens in Europe Ed. Alistair Ross|
The preschool is supposed to be as rewarding and educating for the child as this network has been for me. In books about early childhood it is stated, maybe not with the exact words but something in the way, that it must be clear that that the work in the preschool must be both rewarding and educating, for the child. Those words call to my mind, what does it mean to be educating, to be rewarding? Have those words any kind of connection to a person being active participant in the society. In Act of law about Icelandic preschool it is stated that the purpose of early childhood programs is to prepare the young citizens to actively participate in her society. It says that the future of our democratic society and its values depends on civilian's participation. Citizens of tomorrow have to learn how to work the ropes today. By this definition, the purpose of early childhood programs is to maintain and build up the future of our society? This empathize on civilized society is mirrored in the Icelandic concept for educating. To educate is to, mennta, and education is menntun (Guðmundur Finnbogason. 1994). The word has its roots in the word man and the meaning is to become a more of a man (in the meaning human) to become more human. It means to be able to use all your ability to become a good person who uses all her competence to strive toward that goal. The big question must then by how does one become more human? What is to be a human? How does this connect to the concept of citizenship? Is there a relation between being a human and being a citizen? Is one condition for the other? It can be argued that one way to live up to this goal is to live and participate in a democratic environment. If so building up such an environment is of great importance? And how is that done? Who in our society has the ability to influence our children? I have always believed the preschool to be great importance for that purpose.