The Reading Room

Read and share your views on our current and past articles, covering a wide range of children's books, reading, education and development topics.
If you have a subject of interest to you that you'd like to know more about, let us know and we'll do our best to cover it.

creator image

How to enhance preschool learning

Apr 05, 2010 | By Kelly Boyer

Ways Parents Can Use the Home as a Learning Environment.

Education spelling blocksParents often do not realize that the home is the best educational environment for preschoolers. Preschoolers are in a constant state of learning. Brain development takes place at rapid speeds throughout the early years of their lives. They are constantly absorbing all that surrounds them. The home offers an abundance of learning opportunities and helps children build greater self-esteem; as well as social and cognitive skills.

Childrens lives during the first five years are crucial. It is during this developmental period that the foundation for learning is being built. Children need to learn basics skills before they can successfully move forward with their educational careers. Parents have the opportunity to take preventative measures to assure that proper development takes place. The best place to start is in the home.

Building the Foundation for Learning

These foundational developmental skills set the tone for future growth. If children do not acquire these skills during their preschool years, their success rate drops considerably, making learning difficult. The results are usually severe, causing frustration and low self-esteem.

  • Number recognition
  • Letters and letter sound recognition
  • Quantities up to ten
  • Counting groups up to ten
  • Problem solving skills- behavioral, mathematical, and cognitive

Bowls of foodLearning at the Dinner Table

Dinner time is one of the best times for learning to take place. Sitting together at the dinner table not only helps build self-esteem and social skills, but there are numerous amounts of educational opportunities.

Get children involved when it comes to setting the table. During this involvement parents can help preschoolers learn how to count, as well as begin to gain a deeper understanding of quantities, and grouping. While setting out the plates and utensils, have children count the number of people that will be eating and then placing the proper amount counted onto the table. Help children understand that each person only needs one spoon, fork, knife, plate, and cup even though there is more than one sitting at the table. Identify that each of these objects belongs to a group.

Scattered over the table are bowls and plates filled with vibrantly colored foods. Ask preschoolers to describe what foods are green, brown, red, and so on. Children can also count the number of colors that they see, as well as what letter the name of the food begins with.

Object identification is important for children to understand during the beginning years. It helps with their correlation skills and can sometimes be used to identify other things such as letter and sound recognition. For example, an apple can be related to the letter A and the sound it makes.

Learning Using Household Items

Take a look around the house. How many shapes make up a single object? Using the coffee table, have children identify all the shapes they see. Maybe it is in the shape of the square, but the legs of the table are rectangles. Expand children’s fun by measuring the table. Add some creativity by measuring the angles and edges. Use comparison skills can demonstrate to preschoolers why several tables are alike and different.

There is a vast number of objects and items that can be used. Applying these basic techniques to anything in the room can become an adventure. Some other examples of exciting objects to use are:

  • Clocks
  • Rugs
  • Picture/ Picture Frames
  • Doors
  • Windows

The best way to see if proper skill development is taking place is to check for understanding. One way is to have children verbally explain how they came to their conclusion. Please remember when doing any activity with young children they are still an exploratory stage. During their early years it is the process and not the product that matters most.

The home is an excellent source for developing learning at an early age. It is a safe environment that allows preschooler’s to be opened to amazing possibilities. Parents must remember to continuously encourage children. This helps make home activities more enjoyable.

About the author:
Kelly Boyer
is a freelance writer and former teacher, with Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education and an emphasis in Early Childhood Development. She has extensive experience in the educational field, where some of her specialties include helping needy families, working with children who have behavioral problems, and community outreach.
Click here to contact or read more articles by Kelly Boyer.

Tags : kids, children, preschool, education, learning, development

Back to Home

Bookmark and Share