Children often find it hard to sit still for long unless they are using technology. However, we all know that too much “screen time” is not good for kids. Now, there is widespread concern that children are not active enough and can have related health and wellness issues.
Schools and early years organisations are also worried that young children’s communication skills and language development are not as good as they need to be to cope well in schools, reporting a decline in standards over the past few years.
As busy parents, we all want the best for our children, however there is a lot of conflicting guidance and it can be overwhelming. We have put together some ideas for getting creative with your children, which will help to develop their communication and language skills and promote greater levels of physical activity.
5 ways to get creative with your kids!
1. Treasure Hunt
· This can take place in the home, or any other location that is permitted under the current restrictions. Make sure you establish rules about where they can and cannot go before you start!
· Make a list of items that they need to find that involves them in looking high and low around the house or outside space, including items that they may not normally see or notice.
· For younger children, use instructions that exercise memory and use of descriptive language, ‘Stanley, next on the list we need to find a teddy with a red jacket on’.
· Increase the fun by playing against another child and awarding points.
Dadi Tip! You could even practice your mandarin vocabulary by asking them to find an object using a word they know.
· Add a physical element such as “thinking time” marching on the spot, jumping jacks etc. in between each item to get their brain active!
2. Making music
· Why not try experimenting with a xylophone or other musical instrument and exploring the sounds it can make?
· Whilst it is tempting to lean on technology, it’s a far better sensory experience for kids to use real instruments. It’s important that children have the opportunity for real experiences, not just digital ones. They need this for their sensory development and to learn about interacting with the world around them. It can help develop their sense of touch as well, such as how hard or softly they need to use it
· Another way to make music is to line up glasses with different levels of water and see who can make up a sound-pattern by tapping the glass gently with a metal spoon. Guide your child to measure out the water and decide the order of the glasses.
· Talk about what you are doing and encourage close observation.
· You could also use food colouring to make the activity more colourful.
· Add a physical element for example, if you tap 4 times, jump 4 times!
We hope you enjoy these three simple creative activities. Doing these sorts of games with your children will encourage:
● Communication and observation skills
● Perseverance in following instructions
● Precision of movement
● Creativity and confidence
At Dadi and Otto2, we teach the “whole child”, focusing on language and art skill development along with confidence and creativity.
We hope you enjoyed this blog. Stay tuned next week for our next edition. As always, if you would like to book a trial class for Dadi or Otto2, please get in touch.
You may also be interested in reading 9 Tips to Harness a Growth Mindset and Develop a ‘Can Do’ Attitude.
Developed for Dadi Mandarin and written by WOI.