Posts

Keeping Your Child Active During the Holidays

, ,

The holidays can be stressful for parents. It can be challenging to come up with ideas to help release your child’s high energy when there are no set schedules.

Here are some ideas you can follow to keep your child active while retaining the skills they learnt at school:

  1. Family bonding activities can be simple. A family trip to the museum or family game night will be exciting!
  2. Sporting and adventure can be a good outlet to release your child’s high-energy. A good outdoor playtime will be good for their physical health!
  3. Nature experience can be educational and beneficial for their mental wellbeing in the long-term. Take them out on a hike or organise a family camp-out!
  4. Helping them find their hobbies can help them build interests that can turn into careers and facilitate skill development.
  5. Relaxing days are also good for your child to take a break. That’s what holidays are for, after all!

Make sure to balance both high-energy activities — to keep them active — and low-energy, relaxing activities to allow you and your child to recharge.

Read here to find out more about the activities you can do with your child during the holidays.

What is Pretend Play and Why is it so Important?

,

Benefits of Pretend Play

Pretend play is a great tool for young children to learn valuable life-skills while exploring their imagination. Both pretend and physical play work together to train and develop your child’s fine motor skills.

Pretend play has many benefits including:

  1. Enhanced language development
  2. Creativity
  3. Social skill development
  4. Planning and organisation
  5. Independence
  6. Social norms

You should encourage your child to engage in pretend play as it facilitates the development of skills required in every aspect of their life!

You can find out more about pretend play and its importance here.

How Physically Active should Your Child be?

,

Physical Play

Regular physical activity is recommended for both adults and children to maintain a healthy lifestyle. This is especially important for young children between the age of 0 – 5, as the first 5 years are the most crucial for growth and development. Starting physical activity young can build a good habit that will follow them as they grow older.

The ACT Health Department recommends:

  1. Babies (1 year and under)

Babies should be actively engaged multiple times a day. Infants who are not yet mobile can play on their tummy for at least half an hour throughout the day.

  1. Toddlers (1 – 2 years)

Toddlers have high levels of energy that you might find challenging to keep up with. The health department recommends at least 3 hours of active play throughout the day.

  1. Pre-schoolers (3 – 5 years)

Pre-schoolers should have at least an hour of physical activity a day. It is recommended to start introducing aerobic and strength-building exercises during this stage.

Physical activity should be paired with sufficient good quality sleep. Your child needs adequate rest to repair their bodies and retain the skills they learned while engaging in physical activity.

Read the full blog post here.

Delivering Play-Based Learning Through Educational Toys

Children are Natural Learners

By nature, children are curious about cause and effect; this interest in ‘how the world works’ can be observed from day 1. As they go through the process of growing up, children are constantly analysing and drawing conclusions based on their experiences.

“Babies and children are like little scientists. They gather evidence by observing and experiencing the world,” says Tamar Kushnir from the Human Development Department of Cornell University1. While it may look like they are simply playing with toys in a random or haphazard manner, it has been observed that they are actually engaged in a rational process of hypothesising, evaluating and adapting their beliefs, after being presented with real-world evidence.

Play-Based Learning at Piptree

At Piptree Early Learning childcare centres, toys are more than just fun and games. The way Piptree delivers play-based learning is through our carefully selected, comprehensive range of educational toys, designed by experts in the field2. We have fitted our childcare centres with purpose-designed, sustainable, wooden ‘toys’, which are all actively aimed at stimulating our children in the domains of language, mathematics, creativity, science and health.

Read more

The Importance of Imagination and Make-Believe Play

Symbolic play is the topic which is close to my heart, and I would like to open the door and let you have a little peak about the importance of creative play.

Read more

Natural Resource Play for Children

Natural resource play encourage children to observe closely and use all their senses.

The range of natural materials we are able to use with younger children is endless, yet we need to be careful.

Some ideas for nature play:

  • Water!
  • A variety of leaves including simple and compound leaves, pine tree needles, leaves with stripes and patterns, leaves of different colours and shades, leaves with interesting textures and scented leaves
  • Shells of varying shapes, sizes, patterns, textures and colours
  • Bark and twigs from a variety of trees, cut sections of wood and short lengths of pine showing grain and knots
  • Fruits and vegetables that are interesting to look at and to handle
  • Pods of different sizes, shapes and colours, pods with seeds still in them and cones of different shapes and sizes

Contact us today to visit one of our locations and see natural resource play at work at Piptree.

Nature Play Passport for an Amazing Childhood

,

Nature Play QLD PassportToday your children will receive their free Nature Play QLD Passport to an amazing childhood. There are missions to complete, activities to play, outdoors to explore!! Please support our children to blossom through play!!

Your Nature Play Passport will have activities such as:

  • Animal I spy
  • Soccer play with a twist
  • Shadow art
  • Kaialgumm Games Trail to learn more about our indigenous culture

There are stickers, fun facts and heaps more online!!

Go for it, give the children the very best, as it is the little things that matter!!

Nature Play

The Role of Play Based Learning in Child Development

,

Kids love to play. And there’s a reason for that.

It’s not only natural, but it’s essential for optimal child development.

In fact, play is so important that the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights recognises the right of every child to engage in play time.

Read more

Why Play is Encouraged to be a Part of Children’s Lives

,

Play is a universal phenomenon and a right of childhood.

It is spontaneous, rewarding and fun with several benefits:

  • Education: helps children learn and build skills that lay the foundation for learning to read, write and do maths.
  • Social skills: provides opportunities to socialize with peers of the same age, to learn to understand others, to communicate and to negotiate.
  • Cognition: encourages children to learn, imagine, categorize and problem solve.
  • Therapeutic benefits: Gives children the opportunity to express troubling aspects of their daily life, including stresses, trauma, family conflicts and other dilemmas.

Our children live in a time of busy schedules and high expectations for achievement; we should take care to give them the time and space to discover the joy and benefits of free play.

Using Imagination is Child’s Play

Have you ever heard of the stories from your parents or older generations?

You know the types of stories that sound something like this: “When I was young all we had was paper and pencils”, or stories such as “We were outside from dawn to dusk”.  Can you imagine what the children were doing? I can, they were playing games like stone skimming into creeks, they were riding bikes and chasing each other around in an imaginary game. Children were able to play freely and incorporate natural items into their play without much effort. Of course, we should supervise and join in at times, but we need to establish the fact that children are born to play.

As adults the best days are when we engage and play with the children, use rocks, sticks, bikes, hula hoops, do flower pressing, sand play, drawing, reading, playing peek a boo, hide and seek, singing, dancing, playing catch, throwing balls, going to parks, taking walks around our neighborhood. There are so many simple activities we can participate in with our children which help us engage with our children, support their learning and guide them to be the future helpers and leaders of the world.

We make a difference every day with these moments. These moments are the ones the children learn so much from and make their memories. Ask yourself what was the best part of your childhood?  I guarantee it was when your loved ones played games and spent time with you, not necessarily the toys you were bought!

Begin to blossom with ideas from yesteryear, understand the importance of play, imagination, social and emotional well being. Theorists have been observing this for many years.

At Piptree we take a blend from different theorists, thus encompassing the best from around the world. We are leading the way in education and development and will continue to support our children and their families to grow and blossom together, forming strong bonds and feeding the imagination!

Click here to enrol now at Piptree