Play, learn, craft, problem-solve, communicate and get messy together!
Creative learning supplies encourage indoor and outdoor play while supporting important child development. Follow your child's lead and have fun!
What Play Can Do:
- Play-based learning fosters continued brain stimulation and access to multiple senses.
- Early engagement promotes fully developed brains.
- Creative play can engage social emotional, cognitive, fine motor and gross motor skills.
- Children are born with all their brain cells – 100 billion, but they need to be connected!
What Play Can Look Like:
- Explore and experience together: draw, journal, doodle, write and create using your notebook, magnet board, markers, chalk and glitter glue to create something new or practice familiar shapes!
- Document your days with drawings, quotes, crafts, stickers, and pictures. Date and label your work.
- Ask children to tell you about their work and write the story down for them. Show your child their words on paper and help them feel proud of their unique voice.
- Aim to read aloud to your child for at least 15 minutes each day. Rhyme, sing, tell stories, and repeat!
- Limit and supervise screen time and try your best to link it to new learning and exploration.
- Create space for messy play using playdough, pipe cleaners, glue, paper, bubbles, chalk, and household items like beans, flour, rice, and water. Include toys that wash easily and safe kitchen items like cups, spoons and colanders to scoop, sift and pour. Sensory play connects neurons.
- Paint! Build cognitive, motor and social emotional skills through free exploration - use a paint brush for fine motor practice and hands for bigger muscles skills.
- Involve your children in healthy eating by allowing them to help prepare simple meals and snacks like oatmeal with fresh fruit. Don't forget to count your bananas and blueberries for an edible math lesson!
- Plant! Use your plant kit to grow fresh herbs, connect with nature, and experience how nourishing science can be. If outside, hunt for bugs, observe the weather and ask questions to build critical thinking.
- Incorporate physical play into your day! Use bubbles for STEM learning, physical play, fine motor, and social emotional development. Jump, skip, run, and dance to stay healthy and active while at home.
- Music and movement build brains! Decorate and use your new maracas to sing, dance, and jump around. Create instruments with household items like pots, pans, spoons, bowls to make music anytime.
- Develop math skills through play with patterns, numbers, counting, building, and sorting of items. Try using paper, glue, pipe cleaners, playdough, and safe household items like socks for practice!
- Practice mindfulness and be present! Play is about the process and connection with our children.
REMEMBER: Be aware of choking hazards and what children will put in their mouths. A good rule of thumb - if it fits inside a toilet paper roll it is a potential choking hazard.
Also, check out Children's Council's parent and caregiver education workshops. See our related article, "What virtual workshops and activities are available at Children's Council during the COVID-19 pandemic? "