Learning with classic preschool games
Preschoolers are often found playing in groups the age-old popular games that every adult today remembers playing. These classic preschool games are not just about fun and burning off that excess energy children carry, but also disguise some important learnings that are essential for them to master. Kids ‘R’ Kids, an educational preschool, shares how the classic games that children play at home and preschool secretly model real-world situations that children derive their learning from.
1. Duck, Duck, Goose
Life is a series of decisions and this classic game teaches children to think strategically and understand the impact of decisions. Participants sit in a circle, and one child walks around the circumference tapping each head in turn and saying “duck.” Eventually, the player picks one child to be the “goose” and runs around the circle to try to take that child’s place before the “goose” catches up with the player. If the player reaches the end without getting tagged, the “goose” returns to their seat and the original player continues around the circle.
This game encourages children to decide how they will choose the “goose”. They will likely tap the child who isn’t paying much attention and offers better chances of reaching their seats without getting tagged. This game teaches children to plan and gives them immediate feedback on the quality of their decisions.
2. Musical Chairs
Conflict resolution is an important part of social skills that children must acquire. This game helps children learn how arguments are resolved peacefully, how to deal with the disappointment of losing, and build their patience. Chairs are placed in a circle, one less than the number of children in the game, and then music is played as kids walk around the circle. Every time the music stops, everyone must be seated. Children who don’t get a chair are out. Then another chair is removed and the game restarts until there is a winner.
As the game progresses, children learn to deal with the frustration of being out of the game. They practice patience and wait graciously for the game to get over and applaud the winner. During the game, there will be arguments between the players that they must resolve peacefully and kindly. An adult needs to monitor and intervene to help settle the conflicts and keep the morale high for kids who are out of the game.
3. Simon Says
This game teaches children to focus and pay close attention to instructions. They also get a taste of leadership during this game as they instruct their peers to do silly actions by saying “Simon says tap your head” or “Simon Says jump like frogs.” The other children follow the leader as long as the instruction is preceded by “Simon says”. Children who are distracted end up doing silly actions by themselves. This gives them the impetus to listen closely to the entire set of instructions before getting started.
4. Row Your Boat
Self-awareness is a crucial skill for children to develop as part of the learning process. This game here pairs up children facing one another with knees bent up in front of them and holding hands. They are instructed to rock back and forth in time to the song “Row, Row, Row Your Boat.” This requires them to work as a team and coordinate their movements with each other as well as the music.
5. Hide and Seek
Hide and Seek educates children on problem-solving. Players try to assess the places that will keep them hidden for the longest possible duration. This assessment helps build spatial awareness as children consider visibility from various vantage points. They may also analyze and reject the spots that are most frequently used and discovered during the play.
Hopscotch is a classic sidewalk game that helps develop critical thinking skills. As children toss a rock underhand at the hopscotch pattern, they learn to navigate the hopscotch course without landing on the square with the rock. As the game gets harder, they may need to hop on one foot and plan the best route to win the game.
7. Red Light, Green Light
A game of patience, Red Light, Green Light requires one child to stand facing away at the other side of the field. The goal of the other children is to be the first to touch that person, without being caught in motion. When the person is facing away, children can rush forward during the green light. When the leader turns around to face them, that’s a red light when kids must stop moving. If the leader catches anyone in motion, that person will have to go back to the starting line. Children will need to choose a reasonable pace that allows them to stop when the leader turns around. Controlling their impulse to run forward and waiting for the right moment to rush forward helps them learn about patience and good judgment.
8. Sleeping Lions
Children have a very low attention span and poor focus. This game can help them develop these important skills. During this game, children lie down and pretend to be asleep. Then one person walks among the sleeping group and tries to convince the group into reacting and opening their eyes. The last kid to stick to the enactment of “sleeping” is the winner.
Why Kids ‘R’ Kids?
The philosophy of “Hug First, Then Teach”, defines every aspect of what Kids ‘R’ Kids, Valrico stands for. Unlike many daycare centers or childcare providers, its methodology is a whole-child approach. It constantly strives to strengthen and encourage every child’s emotional, intellectual, social, and physical well-being through the expertise of its childcare providers and a unique partnership with parents.
Kids ‘R’ Kids International is accredited by AdvancED®, the world’s largest education community, and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS/CASI). SACS/CASI is an accreditation division of AdvancED®. This accreditation ensures that the high accreditation standards are met and exceeded.