Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Importance of Active Group Play for Toddlers through Kindergarten

Group activities and active play ranging from old-fashioned games like Ring-a-Round a Rosie or catch to nature walks and leaf collecting in the Fall all provide much needed social interaction along with basics such as language practice and gross motor skill development.

If you are working at home with one child, look for opportunities to organize a small group of children in roughly the same age range to meet up and go outdoors every morning before you begin your indoor teaching routine. Ending the day with an additional outdoor activity will be a great boon to your homeschooling day, too.

As you put together your day at home (or at school), you can figure out the best times for scheduling outdoor or active play (sometimes in bad weather, we use active indoor games). Are children particularly restive during certain times? If you are at school, do a lot of parents show up late in the morning, interrupting the quiet morning work routine? Strategic placement of active breaks can help the flow of the day and prepare children for quiet indoor work.

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