Posted on 08/27/2019 at 08:45 AM by Blog Experts
What is it that WE, adults who live, work, teach, and interact with children can do to “MAKE THEIR DAY”? What is IT? It might even work for us, the adults, to do a little every once in awhile.
It doesn’t require batteries or an outlet. It doesn’t mean a lot of money has to be spent (maybe occasionally). It doesn’t always come with an answer.
It does require that children touch, see, hear, and maybe, smell or taste. It does require multiple options for use. It does maybe expect use of motor, language, cognitive, social-emotional and self-help skills. It does require the participant to use their knowledge, actions, emotions, problem-solving. What can it be?
Oh, IT was given away in the title of this BLOG. PLAY!
What are the benefits as we think about the beginning of a new school year? What can I do and use to support young children as they really begin to develop new and/or greater understanding of the world around them, as they begin to process through their emotions while learning to deal with “figuring it out” or “not figuring it out”, how do they begin to know and understand the language and vocabulary or learning, as well as any number of important life-long skills? It is through PLAY. There are mountains of research and data about the benefits of play, both in the here and now, as I explore new materials and situations, but also as I, a child, get older and what benefits it brings to my adapting in new and different situations, learn new ways to approach learning or problem-solving, as I learn new vocabulary, as I …..begin to figure it out!
With the start of a new year, 2019-2020, begin by exploring how children learn and what are the best strategies to support their learning. It is also a great time to explore how to develop and design environments (classrooms) that support the hands-on play mixed in with some small group experiences. Can you figure out how to give children options and skills to be searchers of information and develop skills of how to learn rather than just giving facts and details that sometimes have little to attach to in the “brain storage area” because young children are just learning new ideas and concepts and need time to interact in playful experiences to help them grow and learn.