Monthly Archives

December 2015

Curiosity: A Key Instrument in Early Childhood Learning

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Curiosity: “A child’s desire to explore, discover, question, and wonder” (Dietze, 78).

Curiosity is a key aspect of Reggio Emilia education as activities are planned around children’s natural desires to learn.

Children can express their curiosity in a number of ways:

  • Cognitive exploration (with their mind and thoughts)
  • Physical exploration
  • A combination of the above

An important part of promoting curiosity is developing an environment that supports children’s natural tendency to explore.

Positive reinforcement and encourage of curiosity can help children build self-esteem because it tells them that they are able to learn independently and that their thoughts and questions and wonderings are valuable.

Curiosity is the first essential step in a chain reaction that produces learning opportunities and children’s confidence. Curiosity leads to exploration, which leads to discovery, and pleasure which causes repetition of the task that first elicited their interest. Repetition results in mastery of the task or skill with produces confidence in the child that they have achieved something. This confidence builds their self-esteem (a concept we have talked about in previous posts, scroll down for more info!), which leads to more exploration.

So, the message here is that curiosity is a catalyst in helping children want to learning, enjoy education, and build confidence in their abilities.

Source: Dietze, Beverlie. Foundations of Early Childhood Education: Learning Environments and Childcare in Canada. Pearson Learning Solutions, 2006 VitalBook file.

 

Holiday Craft for Kids: Q-tip Snowflakes

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Q-tip snowflakes are great activity for this winter season. They can be turned into ornaments to hang on a Christmas tree or keep as regular snowflakes to display elsewhere if you prefer.

Here’s how to make them!

Materials Needed:

  • Q-tips
  • Silver glitter
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Blue paper
  • Sparkly silver pipe cleaners

Instructions

  1. First, cut your Q-tips into short and long pieces so they are all of variable lengths
  2. Put strips of glue on the paper radiating out from a middle point. Do a few strips at a time so the glue doesn’t dry and let children start putting the Q-tips on the paper
  3. Repeat this until you feel you have enough Q-tips to make a full snowflake
  4. Next, line each Q-tip with glue again and then sprinkle silver glitter on top (or use silver glitter glue if you prefer)
  5. Lastly, cut your blue paper around the snowflake shape you have made with your Q-tips and your done!
  6. (optional): bend a pipecleaner in a loop and tape or glue it to the back if you would like to hang your snowflakes on a Christmas tree.

 

Source: http://www.craftymorning.com/q-tip-snowflake-ornament-craft-kids-make/

 

Activities in the Lower Mainland this December

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As cold as it is, winter in Vancouver and the lower mainland is a great time of year! There is actually a lot to see and do, so put on your warmest coat and get out there! Here are some suggestions from VancityBuzz.

Vancouver Christmas Market

Nov 22 – Dec 24

Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza

 Bright Nights in Stanley Park

Nov 27 – Jan 4

Stanley Park

Canyon Lights

Nov 29 – Jan 3

Capilano Suspension Bridge

Robson Square Skating

Dec 1 – Feb 28

Robson Square

 

And more! See (source): http://www.vancitybuzz.com/2014/12/26-things-december-vancouver/ for other events and details.

 

Indoor Physical Activity

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If your child is one of those kids who are always on the move, rainy days at home can be a quite energetic, and sometimes it is difficult to get the children moving when you are trapped inside.

However this site (link at bottom) offers a number of physical activities that kids can do indoors, most involve relatively little equipment and space.

Some of our favourites include:

  • Indoor hopscotch
  • Game of catch with a foam ball
  • Yoga
  • Hacky sack
  • Cleaning (this one is convenient for you too if you can get them interested in it!)
  • Red light, green light
  • Paper airplane race
  • Balloon games
  • Hula hoop
  • Indoor bowling

For full lists and links to instructions for some of the more unique games visit (source): http://www.homeschoolwithlove.com/2014/02/10/50-physical-activities-high-energy-child-do-indoors/