Strategies For Settling Children Into Childcare

Child Care

Settling Children into Childcare on Day One

Settling children into childcare differs depending on their age, temperament and the period of time they have spent away from their parents with other people. The anxiety level shown by the child at the time of the parent leaving them for the first time at the centre will determine the strategy required. In the lead up to the first day a parent can do little things that will assist in their child settling in more quickly.
In the lead up parents should talk to their child about where other children go during the day and why. Tell them that one day they will be able to also go to childcare. Explain all the exciting things that the other children are doing and seeing at childcare. This will build up their excitement to want to see for themselves. Another simple way is to locate books with stories about children at childcare and read these to your child.

If your child is a baby insure that you provide a rich experience with them in the childcare surroundings as this will help settle them.

In an earlier post “Daycare Centers – What To Look For On First Visit” I have strongly suggested that you take your child with you. By taking your child with you on that first visit,  they will be partly familiarized with their new environment. Short visits with your child will help develop their confidence and make them more settled when you leave.

Day One – Stay With Your Child

I would suggest that on day one you organize it to be a short day and you stay with your child, arrange this with the childcare center. During this settling in time your child can get to know the carers and the surroundings with you there in support. Make sure during this time you are relaxed and show confidence in the carer, to make your child feel at ease with them.

Don’t Express Your Feelings & Anxiety

While you are with your child don’t let them know that you are feeling the anxiety of leaving them for the first time at childcare. They will soon pick up on this and react accordingly. You must stay positive, calm and control your emotions. Once you leave the center you can let it all out. After you have left you should be encouraged to phone the center to check how your child has settled.

Saying Goodbye

You must show your child that you feel comfortable and secure leaving them at the childcare center and that you trust their carer. Keep the ‘goodbye’ brief and confidently say ‘goodbye’ to them and always reassure them before leaving that you will return to pick them up at a particular time. Just walk away, don’t look back. Never just sneak away while they are playing as it will be distressing for them when they realize you are gone. They will not know when they will see you again. It will also make it very hard in the days following.

Take a Comfort Possession from Home

Letting them take something from home that they have every day will help them feel safe and secure. If they have something when they go to bed let them take that with them, otherwise sleep time could be a distressing time without it.

Conclusion – Settling Children into Childcare

Carers observe parents settling children into childcare weekly so take their advice as well. On picking your child up ask the carer how your child settled in and consciously make a friendly and relaxed relationship with them in front of your child. Children trust people you trust. Tell the carer about your child’s routines and activities at home and any times of the day that they find difficult or unsettling. Don’t be too worried about your child settling into childcare as it takes little time for most children to settle.

What are Children Learning at School and Its Value

day care

The Value of Children Learning

Today the value of children learning is being challenged. We are seeing this when a child has finished their 12 years of schooling as many do not have the appropriate knowledge for a job. As author ‘Studying subjects they will never use, preparing for a world that no longer exists’. Many students describe their school days as boring and not relevant. This is not because they don’t like learning it’s because they can’t see ‘value’. So how do we define this value for them and help as a parent to support their issues? Children learning today needs a far superior sophisticated education.

What has Happened with Children Learning?

Lets step back a few years to pre kindergarten or childcare and in today’s age start to understand what are the main key things about children learning that a child needs to be successful. Then look at how children learning now effectively influences what they achieve in later life. Also when they can do this? You’ve got the answer haven’t you? If it was that easy there would be no challenge for children learning.

Today’s students need a challenge they need to be switched on and children learning has to be relatable! So why do schools then not provide for this. See this article for further reading. Well, they are still operating on 19th century practices and not changing the way children learning happens today. As an example: The model T Ford vehicle was developed in 1908. Today we see the technology of cars has changed and improved overtime for specific reasons. The conditions of the environment, the progress of materials, development of scientific studies and research….and the list goes on! So many things have changed, grown and taken human beings lives on an amazing journey.

Children Learning and Education Today

Education, unfortunately is very slow to respond, change and progress at the pace needed to support today’s technical digital experts. Children today need to have a good understanding of language and communication to support children learning; Literacy awareness through books and any multimedia avenue; Numeracy that support them to connect mathematically; Science to support their discovery learning and inquisitiveness; Social and emotional connections for friendships and relationship building and a love of themselves for who they are, a creative and connected human being.

Key Elements Required for Children Learning Today

When we look at children learning today these essential skills are required for them when they leave school:

Digital awareness
Literacy and numeracy skills
Connections to the real world
Second language skills

As a connected parent you can begin to change the way your child is learning from a very early age. If you provide the emotional support and direction that incorporates the key elements that are required today for a successful learner. With the enormous amount of multi-media resources available, and guiding their safety aspects and use in the arena, you are heading in the right direction.

Kids Science Projects Develop Skills

Children Science

Why Science For Children?

Children are the nation greatest potential asset. Science for children allows them to grow up being able to be decision makers, a skill that sets them up for learning with understanding. Children will become writers, doctors, scientists and all most anything they set their mind too. Children are constantly learning all the time. So it is important that any effort and potential, put into science for children will enable them to fulfil their potential an investment for future generations.

Kids Science Projects Unleash Curiosity & Interest

Over the years I have used kids science projects hundreds and hundreds of times to create a learning outcome for the children in the classroom. Then just recently I read an article which sparked my interest as an early childhood teacher.

You might wonder, when your child asks why? What does this mean to you as a parent? We always look at ways we can unleash the curiosity and interest in young children. So upon reading the information it made me think of the importance that this has in the growth of a child.

We know that literacy and numeracy are key learning areas that a child needs to be able to master. Science is also an area of learning that sadly has not the emphasis which it should have. Children today need to be able to learn through discovery and kids science projects enable just that!

Kids Science Projects Focuses Intellect & Develops Skills

By using kids science projects, the “why” questions children ask really show you that they are wanting to know more about things in the world around them. Science focuses intellect and develops skills such as research, enquiry, problem- solving and learning. These skills are what children are needing to be successful today in mastering 21st century skills.

Kids Science Projects Needed In a Fast Changing World

As a parent you may need to brace yourself because your child is probably going to be smarter than you! This will no doubt be due to the technological world that they are evolving into and science understanding that will prepare them for connecting to real life things. This is because science contributes to the knowledge our nation and world needs. Children today are connected very closely and are in tune with all things. In this rapidly changing world our children need to have the skills to cope. By creating little kids science projects with your young child, you can achieve that outcome and develop an inquisitiveness to learning.

Parents Must Understand the Value of Kids Science Projects

So as a parent understanding the value that kids science projects have within your child’s learning journey is really important. The connection you have with your child’s childcare centre or school is one that hopefully allows you to ask the question “what kids science projects are my children learning and being taught?” Is it enquiry – based learning? How much time in a child’s day is allocated for kids science projects with discovery based learning? Also a parent has a role in engaging children to ask the “why” questions and prompt their interest whenever you can and help them.

Guide To Choosing Educational Toys For Children

Child toys

In the last few years, parents started getting more and more interested in choosing all sorts of educational toys for their children. Because a parent wishes the best for his child, a toy that is labeled as educational is very likely to be bought easier than others. But what is an child educational toy?

Well, there is no definition of the term “educational toy” from what I know. However, what I do know is that an educational toy is a toy that helps a child learn something good, something that will help in the future. Play is the most important activity of any child.

Learning through play is a reality; it can and it is done unknowingly every time your child plays. The parent must however control the play so that it remains on an educational course. There are also toys that aren’t exactly educational for children … Toy guns and other such toys that somehow tend to violence and other bad behaviors are not recommended. You must avoid such toys. Although these toys may be a good source of fun for youngsters, on the long term they will only do harm.

How do child educational toys and games work?

A I said above, play is a child’s main activity. During the play, a child learns many new things. Toys and games must be integrated into the play to make their job. This is not hard, because play consists of several games that require using toys.

Any toy can be educational, as long as it does not develop a bad behavior, and it is used in your child’s play. A toy must be used in order to be educational for a child.

To be clearer about how child educational toys and games work, I will take one example: Hide and seek.

Let’s take a look at Hide and Seek. You do remember this game, right? Can you remember the rules? Ok, I will still list them here, and comment on them and explain its educational side.

  • The first rule is that every player must obey the rules. I know, I know it’s obvious, but if players would not respect the rules, would there be any point for the rules to exist? Every child must learn and obey them, or else they are not allowed to play the game. The educational part of this is that the child learns to accept the fact that he cannot do everything he wants, that there are some limits and he must not pass them in order to keep his privileges.
  • One of the children in the group is chosen to count to 100 at the home tree (this helps young children learn the numbers in a pleasurable way, not like in school), without peeking (this educated the child to use fair play in all areas of the life). Meanwhile, the others must find a good hiding place, one that is both hard to discover and close to the home tree. This stimulates the child to think fast to the best solution to a given task.
  • After he finished counting to 100, the child says “Ready or not, here I come” and then he must search for the other players. He must be very careful. Once he finds a player hiding, he must run back to the home tree and shout his name. He must be vigilant so that he can hear any sound that might indicate the position of the other players.
  • The players who are already spotted must not tell where the others are hiding. This too educates children to use fair play.
  • The first player spotted is the next one to count to 100.

You’d never think that hide and seek, one of the most common games in childhood, could be so educational, right? Yes, it is a very educational game. And it’s not the only one. Pick any game you liked playing when you were a child, and analyze its rules, as I did above. You’ll be amazed. Hide and Seek is oriented mainly towards developing fair play and physical skills. Here’s another example of child educational game that helps developing more advanced skills: Monopoly.

I won’t bore you with its rules. This game introduces your child into the basics of modern business life. Acquiring high value properties, negotiation, taxes. Yup! This game educates your child to become the biggest businessperson on the Wall Street. Monopoly has rules that are more complex and it requires greater concentration.

Specific jargon and names that mean much to the entrepreneurs get your child closer the world of business. Toys are amongst the first objects a child gets in contact. Understanding how things work is a direct result of solving problems with toys like “Why this fits there?”, “Does that fit here?”, “How big is that?”.

Educational toys help your child learn to grab, pull, push, synchronize the movement of the head with that of the hand. Toys are indispensable when playing. Playing with a great variety of child educational toys helps your child develop his imagination, understand that different objects have different properties, and learn how to combine them to create other interesting objectss.

Science For Children – Fun Ideas You Can Do

Science experiments

The Importance of Science for Children

We know that the first 5 years of a child’s life is important. They become independent little people with the curiosity to learn and discover things. The foundations for learning are created and their critical thinking skills and creativity blossom. A child’s personality and direction in life takes shape during this time. By including science for children as a key learning area they will begin to show that they can connect the reasons that things happen in the world as they notice them.

Hands on Learning Engaging in Science for Children

So let’s look at some simple ideas that you can help your child to engage and have fun. Providing hands on manipulative materials and activities in a kids science project. Most things which you already have in your home, which need not involve any expensive costs at all. You can provide effective learning materials so that everyday life becomes an experience.
Depending on the age of your child you will need to guide and judge what experiments that you will introduce when it comes to science for children. So here are a few ideas to get started.

Water Play Idea – Ice and water

What you will need – Cup, ice and warm water

Instructions – Fill the cup with warm water to the top (be careful not to bump the cup and spill any), and then gently add ice cubes to the cup.
Watch the water level when the ice melts.

What Happens?

Conversation – Discuss this process with your child.

Note: The ice will not change the level of the cup as when the ice melts. This is due to when the water freezes to make ice it expands and takes up more space than it does when liquid water. The water from the ice takes up less space than ice. When the ice melts the water level stays about the same.

Painting – eye dropper experiment

What you will need – small jar (baby food size), 3 eye droppers, paper towel, empty container, jug of water and 3 food colourings red, blue and yellow.

Instructions – fill the jar with water. Let your child fill the eye dropper with coloured paint and squeeze a drop into the jar. Continue to add different colours.

Conversation – Talk to your child as they engage in the activity. Support and extend their questions, like, what colour is this? What colour does red and blue make? These are all questions that support their discovery of learning.

Note:

Empty the jar for new discovery any 3 colours will turn water brown.

Science for Children Engages a Thinking Child

If you can inspire science for children and help them find love and learn science, you will no doubt support them to develop solid foundations and perceptive. A thinking child is one who questions ‘why’ things are the way they are. They ask many questions and continue to repeat themselves, until they are happy with the answer. As a parent if you create a positive environment where your child feels that they can ask questions and they will be heard, they will feel the value in their discovery learning. This can be both an enjoyable time for your child and you together. Remember a child’s experience is the wonder of life and through these experiences they make the connections they need. So switch on your child’s inquisitiveness to learn today!

Benefits Of A Child Care Centre

Child Care Centre

A child care centre or preschool serves a very vital function in preparing young children for the transition to primary school. When professionally run by highly qualified early childhood teachers, these facilities can offer many useful benefits to young children, which can be greatly meaningful to them even during their adult life.

In order to understand the benefits of early education, you first need to have an insight of what actually happens in preschool. This will help you understand the impact of such facilities.

The Learning Activities At Preschool

A key aspect of the learning that takes place in preschool is the fact that it is largely centred on play as well as structured activities. This has proven time and again to be a very powerful mode of teaching young kids, which greatly advances their experiences and knowledge. Such play and structured activities are also coupled with open-ended play, which are designed to help children advance at their own pace.

A wide variety of activity options are available for these children, including: puzzles, games, blocks, construction, clay, play dough, painting, pasting, books and sensory activities. These aforementioned activities can easily be carried out indoors. For outdoor options, you child is sure to enjoy: carpentry, dramatic play, water play, exploring natural landscapes, play in sandpits, swings and climbing.

You son or daughter is also going to develop valuable social skills through interaction with other kids. This is further enhanced through group activities like: playing with instruments, show and tell, drama and acting, stories, poetry, dancing and singing.

What Are The Benefits Of Preschool?

Numerous benefits can be derived from early learning experiences:

1. Cognitive Development:

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare states that various cognitive developmental benefits can be derived from quality preschool programs. Your child would have the chance to develop beneficial social skills, intellectual development, independence and even mental concentration. Your child would have better cognitive development that would make him/ her much more prepared for primary school.

2. Benefits To Disadvantaged Families:

Children in disadvantaged homes are less likely to have ample cognitive/ intellectual stimulation within their home environments. Such stimulation can be found in preschool learning programs, which can greatly help in narrowing the existing achievement gaps. This is something that has come out clearly in the USA-based High/Scope Perry Preschool Study. In fact, the study revealed that the intellectual and social benefits derived from preschool learning extended far beyond a child’s early years and on to his/ her adult life. Even at 40 years of age, such a child would have much better economic performance, educational outcomes and far less commission of crime.

3. Improved Communication Skills, Social Skills And Self-Confidence:

The interactions among children and with teachers, afforded by a preschool learning environment, are great opportunities for young kids to sharpen their communication skills. This also helps in building much better social skills, which they would not have otherwise achieved.

The achievements that a child produces during learning, as well as being recognized by fellow learners and teachers help build a child’s self-confidence. Besides, the child will also learn to appreciate others and value their achievements too.

Making a Difference offers quality early childhood education services that are sure to make a positive impact in your child’s life.