Q. What did the boy octopus say to the girl octopus? A. I want to hold your hand, hand, hand, hand, hand, hand, hand, hand.
All this month posts have been about different ways that hands can be used for kindergarten readiness fun and learning. Learning activities with hands encourage all kinds of brain connections. Did you know that one of the most powerful tools for brain development is movement? In addition to the 5 senses of taste, touch, smell, hearing and sight we actually have 2 more: the sense of movement and the body’s position in space.
Weekends sometimes have more time for families to play, and parks and playgrounds have lots of space for movement. Here’s a few photos of some fun that hands are having as they do lots of movin’ and groovin’. Can your family do some of these this weekend?
During the week it’s sometimes hard to find time for kindergarten readiness activities outdoors, but the weather doesn’t always cooperate. Q. What’s a sunny day called that follows 2 days of rain? A. Monday. If possible weather-wise and you live close to rocks and water, did you know that throwing rocks–safely, of course–is a good activity for thinking? Not only is it exercise for muscles, it’s also exercise for brains. The sense of movement is tremendously important for all learning.
On the surface, it would seem that helping children learn to be calm, relaxed and still would be helpful but physical movement is the most powerful tool for encouraging the growth and development of brain connections. Both strong bodies and strong brains need movement. The 2 senses of movement and the body’s position are developed as kids learn to sit, push, crawl, stand, walk, etc. The skills of talking and thinking are interwoven in motor coordination.
Throwing rocks is one way for kids to develop some movement and body position skills. Kids also like to be able to impact their environment. As they toss a rock into the water, they create both noise and ripples. Ponds, lakes, rivers and oceans are big enough that most rocks do end up in the water. Older preschoolers can learn that they need to carefully watch for people and animals before they throw. Only a few places in cities will have appropriate spaces for throwing rocks, but often on vacation there will be some safe spots. Sometimes, grown-ups like to play, too, and see if they can make flat rocks skip across the water. I think once I got up to 5, but I could never match my dad.What’s your record for skipping rocks?
Kindergarten readiness rocks today with some rockstar dancing. Dancing promotes all kinds of brain connections and physical development . When I was doing some recent blog posts on using the 5 senses for learning and brain development, I learned that we can add 2 more. Besides taste, touch, smell, sight and hearing we have the sense of movement and the sense of our body position in space. This sense of movement is tremendously important for all learning.
At the next presentation to a group of parents and caregivers about helping kids with learning, I could include this question:
Think of how we use exercise to build muscles and strong bodies. For kids to develop strong brains, would they need to:
b) solve problems that go from easy and get harder and harder, or
c) start early with flash cards, baby programs etc.
Would you have known the answer is a) kids need to move? On the surface, it seems that helping children learn to be calm, relaxed and still would be helpful but physical movement is the most powerful tool for encouraging the growth and development of brain connections. Both strong bodies and strong brains need movement. These senses of movement and the body’s position are developed as kids learn to sit, push, crawl, stand, walk and talk. The development of talking and thinking are interwoven in motor development.”
Even to learn to use language kids need the brain connections formed through moving. So it’s no wonder kids move so much even in sleep. It’s the fuel for their brains for all kinds of learning. Can you put on some music for your little one (using a cushion as a stage is optional) for some movin’, groovin’ and learnin’?
Four on the floor, but bugs have more and so does this blog, more kindergarten readiness activities that is. Bugs and creepy crawlies can inspire lots of learning and fun. Kids need physical activities to channel their ants-in-the-pants energy but more importantly moving helps brains make all kinds of connections and pathways that will be used … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness – June Bugs For Fun and Learning #4→
Speaking of spring….Kids always seem to have extra energy. Here’s a way to put it to good use and promote physical development and kindergarten readiness. Find a safe place for lots of moving. What are some different ways to move? Spring, jump, leap, walk, run, roll, crawl, hop, slither, dance, twirling, twisting, etc. Big muscles … Continue reading Kindergarten Readiness – Spring into Action→