The times that a parent cannot recapture of a child are the moments that the child experiences for the first time. Every day there is something new for a child to learn, to communicate with, to create, and to think about. It's one of the most special times for them and their parents. Your child is now attending a day-care centre, nursery or playgroup. It's time for him to learn to be independent. Getting involved in activities with him would make it valuable and exciting for your child. Children benefit from enjoyment of the activities a lot more when friends or parents are involved. Young children learn through playing with friends of their own age group and not through formal teaching. This allows children to explore and find out about what they are capable of. A child cannot concentrate when hungry or exhausted. A play session should be relaxing. Never try to force a child to concentrate if he does not feel like a certain activity, leave it for another day. Allow them to do what they want, providing it's not dangerous.
Make the most of your time with your child
If you are the parent of a baby, toddler or a pre-schooler, you are aware that your child's brain develops at an astounding rate until the age of seven. Every bit of stimulation he gets now is an investment. In spite of expensive toys and good intentions, most parents have so many other responsibilities that they soon find their child's precious first years have sped by. Teach your child to brush his teeth and dress himself from an early age, so you'll have more time to do interesting things together. In spite of the great advantages of playgroups and pre-schools the demands put on school beginners are so high that it's rare for a child to be completely ready for school from day one. By preparing him for school from an early age, you can save yourself and your child a great deal of frustration. Don't only focus on educational activities, also do ordinary things like taking walks together. Find out what your child should be mastering at his age. This will prevent you spending unnecessary time on games that are too easy, or pressuring him to perform at an unrealistically high level. Choose activities that don't need much preparation. A three year old can concentrate for only about 10 minutes at a time, so if you have the planned activity and it takes 15 minutes to prepare, your child will lose interest. He will have more fun doing things he's good at than those he doesn't have a natural talent for. Also, do not take over an activity he is doing, learn a good deal by watching children observing their own material. That's how they have new findings out and encounters on their own.
Early learning of a pre-schooler
According to traditional thinking it is suggested that intelligence is only responsible for around 25% of a child's success at pre-school, a child's personality accounts for about 65%. Our findings indicate that confident children, who are more independent by the age of three or four, tend to be less anxious when they start pre-school, and therefore learn quickly. Friendly children spend more time playing with others, and as a result have more opportunities to learn new ideas. An extrovert, meaning the outgoing child, is usually more successful at pre-school than an introvert, the withdrawn child, and motivation is a key factor in their success.
Using this book
Although this book is for the ages from one year old to the starting of pre-school, I have not indicated an age group for each activity with regard to the enormous changes that age span encompasses. Age is not the actual question, it's a question of how able the child is to perform the activity. The activities are organised into different sections.
1. Planning together our educational goals
2. Discovery activities
3. Educational trips
4. Books for young children
5. Story time
6. Music for young children
The main aim in this book is to suggest ways to channel a child's natural curiosity. Finally, an activity for the child and parent can be fun when doing it together.
Chapter One: Planning together our educational goals
Children get to learn their names, surnames and to increase their vocabulary. When children start building with blocks they begin to know the shape and the size of objects. They also learn how to construct each block according to size and shape. At the tables at pre-school children can learn to do table-work. This helps them to concentrate for longer periods. They can also learn from resources like cards, exercise books, teachers can get worksheets made and stencils can be used to show how one can trace letters from it. They can write down key words, key sentences and it can brighten your child's ability. Objects can be provided for children to sort out according to their size and shape. Put objects that can be balanced according to weight. Make matching numbers on cards so that children can develop their understanding clearly. They can learn to write and to draw, and to colour their drawing correctly. Other methods are that children can bring to school all sorts of objects in different shapes and sizes and teachers can ask them to use their sense of touch to feel all the unique textures of these objects. They can label the objects to read each name on the label. For each day there should be an activity set out for children to play freely, like drawing, painting, some energetic activity like skipping, throwing the ball to each other, playing on a swing and so on. There should be a daily routine of activities that gives the child a sense of security. This allows him to feel secure in his environment and to learn without fear. Every day should be occupied with some activity, so they don't get bored. They are always excited to be at pre-school and love excitement. So, the more activities they have, the more fun-filled they'll be. Children begin to know and understand their reality by means of examples. The different methods of teaching teachers and principals. Children are now going through a phase where they will be reaching out to adulthood. The first things children learn is about the different natures and cultures of the people in their communities. It takes time for a child to master nature and culture. Children cannot sense and obtain knowledge that easily, it gets confusing when so young, so the child needs an adult to adapt information. It should be made to be understood at their level. Reality must be chosen in such a way that it's chosen from various subjects or life realities. Culture and nature should be taught, as that stage of childhood can master and apply knowledge skills obtained. Teachers should have authority over children, this should be done to be meaningful to the children. Teachers have responsibility with regard to the way a child gains his knowledge. Children should not only know and be able to, they should also know and do. They get to learn and develop from their own experiences. In pre-school or primary school there are varieties of subjects for children to learn from.
Subjects like, language, culture and health education are subjects just for the pre-schoolers, too many can be confusing. Language for children is the most important thing for a child to learn. Pre-school children are not so familiar with the real part of language. They should use language as part of their level only. In this way they'll understand it easily. Language releases a child from the concrete world and makes him more mobile. Young children need to feel and do what they like and also speak freely and be outspoken and not to be shy of others. This helps the child to grasp the reality around him and to verbalise. Children's programmes should be based on children's needs. They should be told about their development as young children and when they grow older. Activities chosen by children should never be underestimated. Presentation of activities should be informal. Attention should be given to the programme and activity within the programme.
A. Programme planning
Each school has it's plan and course for the day. The daily programmes in nursery schools or playgroups are as follows : The teacher pointed out to teach a certain group of children has activities of different kinds to teach the children, these are written out. All free-play activities which are planned by the teachers are not chosen by the teachers, the children have their own choices and types of activities chosen by themselves so that they can be able to go about doing whatever is possible. A nursery school being well adapted will have these type of activities during the day. They will follow a specific time-table which may differ from other pre-schools, nursery schools or playgroups. The daily programme should be written or typed neatly and placed on a notice board, so parents can read it and be familiar with their children's activities for the day. Depending on the activities a child can only do an activity that he is capable of. In cases like that the teacher will always give several activities to a child, for example - the art activities (ages 2-5yrs)). You can arrange a playroom to look attractive and very inviting so that your child can be convinced to learn the activity that he wants to.
Teachers should work with a small class of children. A daily routine gives children a sense of security. They know what to expect and they also feel safe in the process. Allow children to play freely from one classroom to another. Have structural activities for children, in this way they can learn to follow their own interests. Encourage children to take an individual equal responsibility while in the classroom. Making of worksheets, flash cards and ideas can be of resources to children. Well equipped learning areas are needed. By children working together in different cultural groups they learn new ideas and new languages together. This gives them a chance to learn about each other's backgrounds at an early age. Discussion topics are ideal too. Learning how to share and to respect one another is as soon as they become debatable and given stimulation activities. Children that work well should be put to work together. Shy children should be invited into discussions often to get them used to audiences. Having open discussion questions allows your child to be encouraged to learn and think from the task arranged. If children are slow in learning, divide children into pairs so you can explain the specific subject and it will be understood properly.
When preparing using material
Always use materials that are easy to find and can be bought cheap. Ask the children to bring to school the following objects. Useful materials like cardboard boxes, empty egg trays, old plastic jars, old containers, old magazines, shells and so on. Children should be able to perform activities that interest them and also be able to achieve goals at their own pace. Activities should be creative, indoor or outdoor activities are best. Doing art activities gives children more potential and creativity. This is when they are using paint and not so much when using crayons.
A playroom at the day-care centre
A reading corner should have storybooks or colouring books. Storybooks for the appropriate age groups and colouring books for the age group that is capable of colouring such books. Chairs in each corner of the playroom, a few soft pillows, cushions or a mattress for the children to lie on when tired. Always remember to have the playroom kept neat and tidy, have lots of toys, like building of blocks, jigsaw puzzles, tea-sets, dolls etc. Low tables for children to use when they want to write or colour in their books. Children need to be seated or relaxed during a certain activity.
The teacher at the pre-primary school must remember that she is not to teach a child in a formal way, rather, in an informal way. The children are young and cannot follow a routine so soon. There should not be too many children in a class. The amount of six children in a class is most appropriate.
These are selected by the child himself. Choices of his own art is adapted to the age of the child. These go according to the topics of each week, and the skills and experience the child has. This is not offered to a large group of children, only six children at a time.
Activity that is not chosen by a child
This activity is chosen by the teacher to specifically reinforce skills of a particular day. Teachers do the explaining to the child of the type of activity of the day. Children also have an opportunity to express their feelings, their thoughts and to create new ideas of their own. A pre-primary child cannot communicate well concerning his vocabulary that may not be too good. By drawing, painting and modelling of clay playing, this enables the child to cope. A child should also differentiate between shapes, colours, painting of pictures and to think creatively. Teachers should allow the child to feel free to draw what he can and wants to, the teacher should not show the child how to do it because the child would feel that he cannot do it on his own, he may have a low self-esteem and think that he cannot do it by himself.
Using variety of drawing activities
1. Thin and thick felt-tipped pens
3. Coloured tipped pencils
4. Chalks of all colours
This type of activity should be offered on a daily basis on good quality paper, by dipping chalk into water before use is best as the writing stays on the board for a while. Children can draw pictures and then trace out the outline and colour it in.
Cutting and pasting of pictures
A child can cut out pictures from old magazines using a blunt-nose pair of scissors, and those that he drew he can stick on a plain sheet of paper or in an old book, to make it an attractive picture book.
Children can use paint to paint blotches. They can mix all the different colours together, one can make a rainbow or also paint all the different objects (old toys) - paint handles of old brushes, old books and so on. To avoid mixing colours especially when painting a specific picture place the paint brush in a different holder. A child should be given paper of all sizes and shapes it must be plain white paper. Children should wear aprons when using paint. Teachers have got to encourage children to choose light and dark colours.
Guide to the use of stages I-IV
1. Allow the teacher to understand the aims of each lesson.
2. Keep the children busy on a daily basis.
3. Have discussions on themes - discussions and acts of music and movements -progresses from easy to difficult. Gradually the child masters the contents.
They develop self-confidence and learn while playing.
Self confidence and awareness which have been developed by the child and the language the child masters can make him call upon his experiences. Children are led to problem situations where they get to find solutions to make discoveries. A pre-schooler is open to asking questions.
Talking to your child helps him
Being a pre-schooler your child is aware of people around him thinking creatively. Children at this stage want to explore and discover new ideas and new situations, they want to have new friends and become more outspoken. Having discussions in class is the utmost objective idea. This is testing the children's knowledge. It's got to be a two-way communication, questions and answers are what you need. Teachers questions and the child giving the appropriate answers or learning from the right and wrong answers. This gives the child confidence in himself. By questioning the child it openly makes him discover new discoveries. This is to stimulate their thoughts, also a child questioned by the teacher and parent on a subject that's of interest to the child.
B. Using themes
To make a child know his appearance (pre-schooler)
To know and be aware of their bodies, about themselves and to also have the development of the vocabulary, the names and parts of their bodies. Parents got to teach their children the different parts of their bodies. The growing child has got to learn about it at an early age. A child should undress in front of a mirror to look at his body and then know the actual parts or what each part or organ looks like. Children got to know the appearance of themselves that is by looking at the description itself. The colour of their eyes, hair, the colour of their skin and so on. At some stage at school children will come across a human body which is made out of plastic in this they can be taught about all the different parts we have and the functions of each. This can teach children lots of new ideas.
Theme : Oneself
A pre-schooler can find out about plenty activities that can be indoor and outdoor and about the child himself too.
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