8 ways to enjoy messy play at home

8 Ways to Enjoy Messy Play at Home

How many of you breath a sigh of relief, when the Playgroup or Kindergarten your child attends does Messy Play – I mean it gets you off the hook right? No paint at home, no playdough on the carpet, no glue stuck to the table – phew!

Have you ever asked yourself, why the Playgroup teacher/ co-ordinator seems to be so keen on providing messy play for the children?

Educators know that children learn through all their senses, of touch, taste, smell, sound, and sight. We aim to provide activities which stimulate the senses – know as Sensory Play. Messy play is one type of sensory play.

It is particularly important for young children’s development, as it allows them to explore a variety of mediums; to develop their tactile skills; and in some cases also their fine motor muscles. It also allows an opportunity for language development (words such as rough, smooth, crunchy, cold, slimy etc) and for the child to expand their thinking skills.

Sensory activities facilitate exploration, and encourage children to learn while they play, create, investigate and explore the materials provided.

Here are some easy Messy Play activities to do at home to assist your child to grow and learn even more: Read more

Toilet Training by grassrootsgroundswell

What do I need to know about toilet training my toddler?

You need to know how to prepare for toilet learning ;what the signs of readiness are; and you need to know how to actually do it – and, of course patience while your child learns this new skill!

As you know, every single child is different, and each child learns in their own time.

Preparation:

If you and your partner are comfortable, let the child see you using the toilet.

Teach them the steps, by description… Eg pull pants down, wipe, flush , wash hands etc – using appropriate language for your child.

Start talking about: ‘When you are a big boy/girl, you’ll wear big boy/ girls pants like… (someone they like) and use the toilet.

Buy a potty and place it next to the toilet if possible. Tell them this is what you use to start. Let them get comfortable with sitting on it, fully clothed. Let them take it to the lounge room, bedroom, if they like – you want them to be ‘happy’ with it.

Buy some big boy/ girl undies. Get them to help you put them in the drawer ready for when they need them.

Teach them the words for the body parts and functions. Think carefully about the words you choose. It is recommended by  sexual health personnel and also child protection people, that children learn the correct terminology.

Have some story books about toilet learning as part of your library.

Be ready yourself. When the child is ready, they can learn fairly quickly, but they need your support and patience during the learning.

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Teaching your Child to Use Scissors

Three year olds can cut using scissors. If you have a three year old child, you know they are fascinated with scissors and their potential to cut anything and everything from paper to clothing and hair!

 

Using scissors requires a lot of skill and fine motor development, and these start to develop well before the age of three.

 

How do you help your child develop the muscles in their hands?

Anything which involves squeezing or pinching type actions will be good, for example:

  • Squeezing the water out of bath tub sponges;
  • Rolling, flattening and shaping playdough;
  • Pinching clothes pegs open;
  • Using small tongs to pick up pieces of salad, or small items such as pompoms;
  • Using an eye dropper with coloured water in to drop onto paper;
  • Squeezing water out of empty, clean plastic bottles and;
  • Using a plant mister with a trigger action.

 

Regular play as above will strengthen the small muscles in their hands, ready for scissors and writing. Read more