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How a child grows and develops is an amazing process! From birth most children automatically know many simple yet life sustaining skills like swallowing, crying, and eventually smiling. It’s not long before the toddler is mobile and busy exploring the environment. Although some learning is natural like eating, walking, and laughing, most of your child’s early learning will be the result of deliberate, well-planned educational experiences, usually in daycare, childcare, preschool, or at home.
While a formal learning experience is crucial for your child’s development, there are many informal ways to learn that will also support your child.
Here are some valuable ways that parents can support their child’s learning experience:
Talk to your child’s daycare, childcare, or preschool about the curriculum they are using. Ask what you can do at home to support the learning experience. If your child is learning a foreign language or new skill, create opportunities for your child to demonstrate and practice what is being learned.
Have engaging conversations with your child that gives your child an opportunity to tell you how she feels or what she thinks. Ask questions like, “What did you learn in preschool today? Why do you think he did that? How do you like this?” The goal is to help your child create a pattern of thinking, communicating, and reasoning during normal activities and events.
Learn through everyday activities. Informal learning can happen in many different ways. If you are preparing a meal, show your preschooler how to measure the ingredients. If you are planning a trip, let your child look at pictures, hear you talk about where to go and what to do when you arrive. If you attend a sporting event, talk about what’s happening in the game, discuss the rules of good sportsmanship and the history of the sport.
Your child learns at home in school, from the environment, and many other ways. With informal learning and the well-planned strategies of an accredited preschool program, infants, toddlers, and preschool children have an advantage that continues throughout their educational experience. When parents support the educational process learning becomes a positive experience that children enjoy. With parental support, your child’s educational experience can become fun and exciting, creating a roadmap for ongoing educational excellence.