Learning doesn’t stop just because the summer months have rolled around – but you and your kids can still have a good time in the process!
Several studies suggest summer learning loss is a real concern for children of all ages, and for young children it’s important to continue to foster their curiosity about the world. Thankfully, playtime and sensory activities are an excellent way to foster learning and help your child develop fine motor skills – and with a bit of guidance from you will provide an additional educational edge.
This article will provide parents with tips on how they can engage their children in various learning domains combined with summer fun to avoid any summer vacation learning loss.
Summer Learning Activities From Vivvi
At Vivvi it is our goal to create wonderful first memories for our young learners as they grow and develop from infants to young children. With a bit of ingenuity and planning, your summer schedule can be transformed into a time for continuing to build a strong learning foundation to stretch your child’s mind in preparation for elementary school. Here are some examples of indoor and outdoor summer activities you can try with your infant at home:
Sensory play is a widely beneficial form of play for babies. Engaging in this type of activity will help promote scientific thinking as your child discovers a foundational understanding of cause and effect, and they will also have the opportunity to build those ever-so-important fine motor skills as they manipulate objects and use their focus and concentration. Examples of sensory play include:
Water play: Water can provide your baby with hours of rich and valuable early childhood experiences to develop their creativity and imagination. Just grab a bucket, fill it with water, add some bubbles, floating and sinking bath toys, and cups. As infants pour, scoop, and stir they are also developing early communication and problem-solving skills.
Sensory bags: These bags are great to have on hand for everyday play. They can help your little one develop their sense of touch, fine motor skills, language skills, and cognitive development. Just grab a resealable bag, some child-safe paint or food coloring, shaving cream, and painter’s tape for sealing it up and you’ve got a ready-to-go activity in the bag.
Many parents have a misconception that they should start teaching math once their child is in school, but you can begin building a strong mathematical foundation with your child way before that. By making a conscious effort to involve your children in math-focused activities, you can help them learn to recognize patterns, count numbers, and gain a sense of time.
Exploring shapes will help your baby begin to learn shape discrimination, hand-eye coordination, visual perception, and problem-solving skills.
Shape boards: Give your infant endless opportunities for focus and concentration with shape boards. These help with hand-eye coordination and problem-solving. Simply take a piece of cardboard and place differently shaped felt onto the board with velcro backing for exploration. Let your infant lead and observe.
Very early in life, children start to identify rhythm and even start to move to the beat. Music helps a baby’s cognitive development and helps them get ready for school by contributing to their intellectual, social-emotional, motor, language, and overall literacy skills.
Sound-play: Sound-play is easy to incorporate into everyday play. Find some plastic bottles that your baby can hold, and add one or more of the following ingredients: rice, pasta, beans, or couscous. Then, your baby can shake and play while listening to all of the different sounds they can make.
These are just a few examples of the different ways you can keep early learning alive during the summer months. For more helpful tips and ideas, visit our blog.
The Importance of Learning Even While at Home
Your child’s day-to-day environment is vital to their learning, and toddlers need regular opportunities to participate in activities that teach new skills and fine-tune existing ones.
That’s why it’s so important to integrate positive interaction into any toddler curriculum. Vivvi’s teachers help children reach their developmental milestones through carefully curated activities, toys, and books. They’re there to encourage babbling, new and familiar words, and all forms of expressive language and interaction.