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What experts say you need to have in early childhood education

Learning begins at home. This is a concept that almost all of us are familiar with. Here at OpenSchoolbag, we explore a few aspects of a learning structure recommended by experienced educators that every parent can adopt to get a good foundation for your little ones!


1.  Communication

Communication is defined by the ability to give, receive and make sense of information and to question, understand all that they see, hear or experience.

Prompting kids during storytelling allows kids to ask questions or answer questions (open-ended) that are posed by parents; such as “why do you think Elsa ran away from the castle?” or “Is Ana a good sister to Elsa?”

Skills like listening and encouraging also enhances communication, so remember to praise your kids!


2.  Manipulatives

Manipulatives are toys and other learning materials that kids can play with.

Some examples would be lego and building blocks that have different shapes; playdough which has a different texture and the ability to change its shape; and puzzles that you can fit onto a puzzle board. 

The use of these toys enhances motor skills and recognition of shapes, colours, numbers, etc.


3.  Literacy & Numeracy

Literacy refers to the ability to read and write, while numeracy is the ability to reason and to apply simple numerical concepts.

Reciting nursery rhymes, scribbling/drawing, identifying and replicating letters and words are some of the way to build kids’ literacy skills.

Simple activities like counting toys, coins or books can improve numeracy skills. It’s also a good way to get kids to keep their toys after playing with them! Get them to count as they return the toys back to its original place.


4.  Sensory

Sensory play is defined as activities that stimulate the ability to feel and perceive things through the physical senses (see, touch, taste, feel, and listen).

Even baking is a good activity to make use of all 5 senses. Kids can also learn about different temperatures; ice is cold, a flame is hot and can hurt you. It’s also a good way to teach about avoiding the dangers that are present at home.


5.  Social Skills

Playing with other kids is a good way to gauge if your kid is able to form relationships, learn rules of behaviour, share, negotiate, cooperate and learn to be part of a group.

With Singapore’s expanding list of indoor playgrounds and trampoline parks, kids have plenty of energy to burn while making new friends and you can observe how they interact with other kids. Do they take turns using the slide, do they push each other while playing?


6.  Curiosity

When a child is curious, they have a strong desire to explore and learn something.

Kids are naturally curious creatures and providing resources like differently shaped/coloured bean bags or blocks will get them to identify and discover shapes and colours. Most kids will also ask questions about anything and everything, such as; “why do they switch off the lights in the movie theatre?” Answering their questions will encourage them to ask and learn more about their environment.


Apart from these 6 aspects, there are definitely other features that are important to building a good foundation for your kids. Share with us in the comments and they might just be useful to any parent who is reading!

All activities taken from Facebook community: Simply Kids' Fun & Resources , Join them for more ideas!

References: Professional Pedagogy Project For Early Childhood Education

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