Activities That you Would Find in an Early Learning Program
Some call it kindergarten, some nursery and others preschool, which is the first couple of years prior to entering Year 1 at the age of 7 years. If your child is fast approaching the day when you have to let go a little and you are wondering what kind of things young learners get up to, here are just some of the activities you would typically see in a preschool.
- Movement – This can take many shapes; dancing, coordinated exercise or organised walks, and it is essential that young children exercise every major and minor muscle group. This improves coordination and helps develop spacial awareness and would normally be carried out in a fun way.
- Storytelling – An essential part of the day, a story might take several days to finish, and with a short period to recall the story so far, the teacher would continue telling the story, deliberately introducing new vocabulary. The kids might be asked at any point, what they think will happen next, plus different scenarios could result in group discussions, with the aim of helping the kids to develop a vivid imagination.
- Art in Many Forms – Of course, art can come in many formats and for very young learners, finger painting or paper collage is a great way to create a picture, and with clay modelling, the children get to use their fingers in a complex way. Young learners should be encouraged to express themselves freely using art, so if you are touring a kindergarten in Bangkok, expect to see art on the menu and the kids’ work displayed on the walls. The first few years at school is when creativity must be actively encouraged and there should be art corners in the classroom, where the kids can explore during their free time.
- Mini Projects – Project-based learning is very popular among all age groups, as it gives the students an opportunity to collaborate and during these times, teamwork emerges. A class project might, for example, be about nature and could last up to a week, with the children collecting leaves and other natural objects. This teaches them about seasons and the necessary things that come together to create life. During a typical term, there could be as many as 6 projects, all with specific goals, and each child would have the opportunity to present their work to the class.
- Music – Sound is a primary sense and young children should be exposed to a variety of music, while often incorporating movement into the activity. Language skills are greatly advanced by music and the children also learn about rhythm and the various types of musical instruments. If, for example, English was the second language, then songs would play a major role in language learning, as the kids pick up a lot of words this way.
- Free Time – The children should be given a short period of time on a daily basis, to pursue their own interests, which might be reading, drawing, playing with blocks, and the typical kindergarten classroom would have a lot of play resources spread around the room.
All of the above would be effectively used in an early learning program, and, of course, everything would be fun-based, which keeps the children motivated.