athomeparentingwithJoFrost2017 - 97

TODDLERS

USING THEIR NEW ABILITY TO
PRETEND, YOUR CHILD CAN
TRANSFORM SOME OLD POTS
AND PANS INTO A DRUM KIT

P

lay is a cherished part of
any childhood. Research by
psychologist Edward Fisher
found play can enhance early
development by up to 67% by increasing
adjustment, improving language skills
and reducing social and emotional
problems, which all have implications
for everyday intellectual life.
Playing is the most natural way for
children to learn and the enormous range
of toys and games on offer can help babies
and young children to grow up happier,
better adjusted, and more prepared to
conquer the world.

IMAGINATION BUILDERS
Kids begin demonstrating imaginative
behaviour from around the age of two
- even ordinary, everyday objects such as
plastic dishes can make them curious.
They will use whatever is available as a
symbols and start to learn that one thing
can stand in for something else.
Using this new ability to pretend, your
child will be able to transform some pots
and pans into a drum kit, or even some
coloured blocks into a jumbo jet.
To encourage imaginative play, keep a
box of colourful bits and pieces - empty
yogurt pots or squeezy balls, for instance
- near your child's play area. Pop in some
open-ended toys, such as coloured blocks,
which have endless opportunities to be
built and rebuilt into fantastic shapes.
It's important that children
have at least half an hour of
unstructured play a day.

and encourage confidence and curiosity
to grow. They'll be able to pick up a
paintbrush and work on their hand-eye
co-ordination skills, too.
Cover a designated area with wipeable
fabric, make sure the paint is safe
for babies and join in with making a
masterpiece to stick to the fridge.
If you are short on time, or you just
can't bear the thought of cleaning up
all the mess, let someone else deal with
it by taking them along to a class at
ARTventurers (artventurers.co.uk).

LIFE'S AN EXPERIMENT
Who said science and research can't be
exciting? Kids love experimenting - but
gone are the days when the only way to
create a funky formula was a chemistry
set. Now there's a wide range of super
creative kits to keep even little ones
occupied for hours, such as coloured
sand or glow-in-the-dark jelly!
Some educational toys will require
a little help from a grown-up, such as
digging 'dinosaur fossils' out of plaster. >

LICK OF PAINT
Art can be a great way to
stretch a child's
imagination

www.athomemagazine.co.uk J UN E 201 7 | 097


http://artventurers.co.uk http://www.athomemagazine.co.uk

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