The words children are exposed to regularly become a part of their everyday vocabulary. Creating a space where children can refer to, observe, listen to, and repeat familiar, new, or theme-related words is the basis of good auditory, linguistic, and communication development. One way to do this is to create a word wall in your preschool classroom.
The Fireflies curriculum helps you build your own word wall by offering four Word Wall Words in each monthly kit. July’s first theme, America the Beautiful, includes the words America and map. Both cards offer children an early exposure to geography, social studies, and patriotism. Children will learn the words fish and hook in Fishing Fun, July’s second theme. Fishing Fun is a summer-inspired theme, during which children will learn about fish, caring for fish as pets, other sea animals, and the sport of fishing.
By nature, children are curious about the weather. This post will focus on helping children learn about and study the weather while using Weather Displays, a resourceful tool found in your Buttercups and Fireflies Starter Packs. Making weather observations with children is a comprehensive process. First, they predict or forecast the weather, and then they test their predictions by making observations and exploring with their senses. Children also explore the concept of cause and effect when they engage with the weather.
From an early age, children begin to explore the concept of time through the procedures, steps, and sequence of events. I remember when my daughter was in the hospital at the age of four. We spent about 10 days together reading books and singing, to the point that after a few days she memorized one of the stories. She would choose the book, turn the pages, and recite each part of the story. Not only did she learn parts of the story, but by associating what she heard me read with the pictures, she learned the whole story and was able to tell it over again in order.
Sequence, order, and routine are important to a child’s development. As babies, children adjust to eating, sleeping, and playing routines. Then they begin to understand before and after and begin to incorporate it into small conversations with peers or adults. With time, children continue to learn about time and sequence, through experiences, consistency in routines, illustrations, and stories. All of this helps them better understand their days from beginning to end. Let’s discover together one tool that can help you present and develop this concept successfully.
Children’s development is highly dependent upon their environment. How much are the children in your care exposed to music, language, movement, or exercising freely? A balanced variety of activities that include songs and movements is sure to increase children’s attention, help them socialize with peers, and prepare them to learn and be more perceptive in future activities throughout the day.
Other than the physical benefits of enjoying songs with movements or exercise, research shows that songs and rhymes help children’s language development. As children listen to instructions given during physical activities, they build a relationship between the words they hear and the movements they see; they make meaning of the words as they imitate movements or create new ones. Through songs and rhymes, children also learn sounds, syllables, and musical patterns. Children will slowly continue to store their experiences until they feel prepared to say their own words, repeat the words in a rhyme, build short sentences, or sing along.