In this brand new year, will your child be starting kindergarten? Are you asking, “Will my child be ready for kindergarten?” “What is kindergarten readiness anyway?” Could you use some answers?
This is a series of posts that looks at some of the basics of getting your child ready to start kindergarten. Although this answer may surprise you, your child needs to PLAY!
One of the most important responsibilities for parents and caregivers is to ensure that children have time and space to PLAY. Did you know that play is so essential to the healthy development of children that the United Nations High Commission has enshrined the right to play as one of the Universal Rights of the Child?
Why is play so significant? Quite simply, because play is how a child learns. The activity does not matter; it could be building with blocks, cuddling a stuffie, putting together a puzzle or throwing stones in a puddle. It could even be washing the dishes or putting away the groceries. If a child is eager and having fun, creating, discovering and manipulating, this is play. Through play, children connect their inner and outer worlds, increasing their knowledge and understanding and gaining confidence in themselves.
Children will learn many basic and readiness skills as they play. It can occur in any room in the house and at any time of the day, alone or with others. Play does not need fancy toys or programs to occur. Kids will play with sticks and empty boxes, the sandwich containers in the kitchen drawer and things that give parents grey hairs.
Development for children at this age is tremendously important. At no other point in their lives will brains have such a sensitive time for learning. Parents and caregivers are children’s first teachers and home is the first school. But there’s no reason for parents to panic. Nature, in it’s wisdom has determined that the most powerful way for children to learn is through PLAY! Imagine that. Now that’s planning! Does your child’s day have time for play?
Questions about play? We can ask the experts–kids! Parents and caregivers are invited to leave comments about kids and play, and ask questions. Connect on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/123Kindergarten
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