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Playschool with Teacher Tom


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This is episode 42 and today I’m here with Teacher Tom talking about playschool.

Tom “Teacher Tom” Hobson is a preschool teacher, writer, speaker, artist, and author. After nearly 20 years as a teacher at the Woodland Park Cooperative School teaching children from 2-5, he has stepped into a new role as Head of Education for Weekdays where he helps teachers, daycare providers, and parents to start their own play-based neighborhood preschools and daycares. He is best known, however, for his namesake blog “Teacher Tom’s Blog” where he has posted daily for the past decade, sharing his thoughts and ideas on early childhood education. Tom travels around the world (Greece, Iceland, Australia, China, Vietnam, New Zealand, Canada, UK, and across the US) sharing his views on early childhood education, play, and pedagogy. He recently authored his first book, aptly named “Teacher Tom’s First Book.”

Adventure of the Week

This week I share our adventure snow tubing with visiting family in the mountains.


Baggage: We explain what assumptions/expectations/beliefs about children that schools (and many parents) get wrong.

School: We go over what components of schools are not really serving children – not fostering the qualities we hope to impart long-term.

Learning: We discuss how children learn.

Socialization: He shares what he learned about socialization from observing children playing together for so many years.

Emotions: We speak to the importance of holding space for a child’s emotional world.

Reading: We offer advice for parents feeling the pressure for their kids to read early.

Playgrounds: We give recommendations for what playgrounds should have and why.

Weekdays: We walk about the hole his new project is trying to fill and his vision for what these communities will look like.

Q & A

We answer Janna’s question, “We participate in an outdoor co-op playground. We have a few kids who are much happier 1 on 1, group activities are not where they thrive, and often result in connection-seeking behaviors like pushing and grabbing. I’d love to know how to best support these kids when most are engaged in a group activity. It isn’t always possible to give undivided attention to these littles when they need a person to engage with.”

Dive Deeper

Disclosure: When I recommend a product that I believe will add value for you, it may contain an affiliate link. When you click the link to make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. 

Teacher Tom’s Blog

Teacher Tom’s First Book


Sage Homeschooling

Free to Learn

Sage Parenting Coaching

Proust and the Squid


Janet Lansbury 

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  1. Tamara Jouval says:

    Great interview! I always love Teacher Tom! I am a small (10 kids) in home after school play care provider. Free play- multi age, lots of space nature, lose parts and freedom to choose. I am creating space for social play. School does not give enough opportunities to practice interacting in natural ways.

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I work from an island in the Pacific Northwest, where I live wild and free in connection with my hilarious husband and three growing sailors in our fixer upper on the beach. I authentically live this healing work out loud raising my own neurodivergent family (inner child included) and draw on my decades of education and experience (I've done all the nerdy work so you don't have to) to guide a revolution of overwhelmed parents just like you to feeling at peace within yourself, consciously connected with your children, embraced by a supportive community, and enjoying a values-aligned life you love.

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