Recently, there has been increased research on the process of learning children in preschool. These researches have come up with different ideas and opinions which have triggered widespread debates by teachers, parents, as well as professional bodies about preschool curriculum and pedagogy. High quality programs have been put in place by skilled and knowledgeable professionals regarding young children and their process of learning. Despite being well trained, professionals find it appropriate and beneficial to make use of a teaching plan in the process of teaching. A good preschool curriculum offers both teachers and parents appropriate program and a framework for its achievement.
An appropriate teaching plan for preschoolers focuses on what is vital to the child ensuring their healthy growth and development. In order to ensure a healthy development of children, parents need to understand the sequence of child’s development. According to the journal Pediatrics by theAmerican Academy of Pediatrics, play is connected to a healthy brain development. Therefore, parents need to create necessary spaces where children can play and learn. In addition, they should lend a helping hand and guidance to the child in case there is a need. Play is an important element in preschool curriculum. Play does not only ensure healthy development of a child, but it also helps them weave together all elements of life as they experience it through interaction. Play is considered to contribute a critical part in child life. According to a study by Wong &Perry, children who involve themselves in creative play blossom and flourish, unlike those that do not (Wong & Perry, 2002).
The teaching plan should be such that children are given adequate time to involve themselves in games. One main aim of play is to ensure good physical development of children. Play has been known to develop both gross and fine motor skills. Through repetition of certain body movement for pleasure, the child is able to develop body control. Secondly, play enhances emotional development of the child. Anxious children may be developed emotionally by role playing. This enables them to cope up with their emotional conflicts. Through play the child escapes into a fantasy world, and hence making sense out of it. In addition, through role playing, the child deepens his/her self-awareness as he/she explores events in a symbolic play. Through the provision of day care by parents, a child is able to develop a vision of the world and hence, gaining a sense of their place in it. Parents can engage their child in play by playing a board game with the child, having a bike ride, reading a story book and playing baseball, including other activities.
The teaching plan should enable a child to gather and gain knowledge. By involving themselves in play, children are able to gather and gain knowledge, i.e. cognitive development. Through games and puzzles, they are able to exercise their ability to think and solve problems. Furthermore, as the children copycat each other, their language speaking ability is strengthened. The children also increase their ability to understand sizes, shapes and texture. Videos, books and educational toys also increase a child’s vocabulary as well as having a clear understanding of world concepts.
The teaching plan should ensure that child’s social development is enhanced. As the child plays with other children, self-realization comes to place. The child will be happy with others and will frequently engage in behaviors that incorporate others. As the child grows, he/she will enjoy playful interaction with others. Children will also learn about teamwork, taking turns and competition.
The teaching plan should enhance the moral development of a child. According to American Academy of Pediatrics, as a child engages in a play with their colleagues, he/she learns acceptable behaviors as well as those that are not acceptable (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2000). Parents should teach their children these behaviors in their early life to control any aggressive behaviors. This can be achieved by parents reading short stories to their children then teaching them the moral implication of such a story to their life.
The teaching plan should foster creativity in children. Creativity enables a child express themselves openly. Creativity makes children come up with something new from their experience and their personal feelings. This reflects and nurtures their emotional health. To ensure that the children become creative, they should be provided with adequate time to involve themselves in creative thinking and creative play. Parents should offer a child with a wide range of experiences and creative materials. They should encourage the child to make their own choices because what they learn and discover without help is vital to their development.
Parents should also make use of educational toys. Educational toys are not only entertaining, but can also be used as learning instruments to enable a child to learn about themselves and their surroundings. They are essential for healthy growth and development of a child. Toys enable children to master world skills. They also aid in the development of creativity and thus, developing a child’s healthy personality. Toys are considered as basic foundations for a child’s success in school.
Parents should be able to select educational toys depending on the child’s skills and maturity level. The toys should challenge the child’s interests and abilities. Incorporating toys in teaching plans enable parents to achieve the following:
The child’s physical skills will be developed.
Children will learn problem solving skills
As they interact with others the children’s language development is enhanced
The child’s emotional well-being and awareness is developed
The child’s social skills are developed
The parent should be supportive to the child’s learning process. The child needs to be empowered as he/she actively reflects on the increased understanding of the surroundings. Parents should be ready for any enquiries from the child. The child should, occasionally, be challenged by engaging them on duties that require in-depth studying and thinking.
Finally, the teaching plan should have an assessment, where the parent gauges the child’s understanding by assigning him/her with various duties of varying degree. This would help the parent make an informed decision on where to make improvement or adjustments.
In conclusion, play fosters physical development of a child by promoting the development of motor skills and sensory exploration. Children are able to become competent and to perfect their abilities at increasingly difficult tasks through play. Play has been proved to foster mental development in children and develop new ways of problem solving and thinking. Thus, play is important for healthy growth and development of children.