Kindergarten At Home
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With lockdown laws still in place and the uncertainty of when it will all go back to normal it is important to keep yourself and your children in routine. Children have now been home from kindergarten and school for weeks and I for one can understand how hard it can be to constantly come up with ideas and activities to keep my little one occupied. This week I sat down with one of KLC’s relief Kindergarten teachers and asked her for some tips and ideas on how to keep kindergarten children stimulated and educated during such a time as now.
Try and keep to a routine of play time, snack time, outdoor play, lunch time, story time, quiet time and some TV time. By sticking to schedule you will not only keep yourself sane, but your child will get use to the routine of the day and in return will avoid unnecessary snacking – which I am sure we are all noticing at the moment! Write it out on a blackboard or some poster paper and make it fun, teach them about time and have the clock next to the schedule so they can identify when it’s time for the next fun activity.
Whilst being at home your child slips back into YOU doing everything for them, whereas at kindergarten it is encouraged for them to do things for themselves. Encourage your child to still be independent i.e. putting on shoes, toileting, bringing plates and cups to kitchen when finished, packing away toys and activities. Venture outside and if you’re going to the park encourage your child to pack the backpack, ensuring their hat and drink bottle are in their bag and remind them about putting on sunscreen if it is a sunny day. Don’t do for them what they can do for themselves. This in return will give them confidence and independence at kinder and school in the future.
If possible, have an area set up to do “messy” activities like painting and pasting. Collect odds and ends such as empty food boxes, ribbons, cut up pieces of magazines, coloured paper, old Christmas cards, small bottle lids, paper plates, paper doilles and icy pole sticks. Have the essentials ready and on hand such as sticky tape and glue. This encourages their imagination to create all kinds of interesting things. Ideally in situations like this it is best to have plenty of paper! Butchers paper is fantastic for little ones and is found at art stores for a very small price. Head up to Kmart and grab some paint and let their creativity flow.
If you’ve been for a walk lately through your neighbourhood you would probably see all the beautiful chalk drawings on the driveways and foot paths. I think this is fantastic and creates hours of fun! What better canvas then the ground! Giant chalk sticks enable your child to create large pictures, then give them a container of water and a brush to go over their picture with and watch the colours really come out.
Exercise & Bush Kinder
A walk to the park is great for exercise but also can be used as some “bush kinder”. Explore the area and you will be amazed at what you discover with your child, interesting leaves, shapes and sizes, gum nuts, acorns, different flowers, stones and pine cones. These are great to collect and can incorporate into some art work, or set in a vase at home. Flowers can be pressed in between large books at home and later used in artwork.
Also encourage child to walk through bushy area, listen out for birds, find insects. Talk about the weather, sunny, cloudy, breezy, shadows and shapes on the ground.
Simple baking like biscuits and muffins or preparation of playdough is a great way to get your child enthused about cooking. Let your child do the measuring and mixing. Incorporate some maths in the exercise and teaching them about measurements, weights and time. Show them the different use of bowl sizes, measuring spoons, measuring cups, wooden spoons, spatula, mixing and kneading. And of course remind them of the safety to take in the kitchen like using hot water and knives. Show them the different consistencies of the mixture and show them how dry and wet ingredients and how they react with each other. There are so many great things to teach a child in the kitchen and it prepares them for being helpful at dinner time in the future – because we all know how hard it is to think up new meals every night!
Riding & Road Safety
How many weekends have you gone to teach your child to ride but haven’t found the time, well what better time than now to get out the bikes and teach your child how to ride whether it be with or without training wheels! Whilst ridding up and down the street teach them about road safety, road sings and traffic lights.
I want to thank Jacinta for taking the time to educate us from a teacher’s point of view on how to ensure your child is occupied, stimulated whilst educated during isolation. There are some great ideas for weeks of fun with your little one and they will forever remember the amazing things you taught them and did with them. We also want to say thankyou to all those teachers and teachers aids still working and educating our children through COVD-19. Stay safe everyone!