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~The Required FTC Disclaimer: As an ambassador for Arkansas Better Beginnings, I am compensated for some posts. However, I am doing this because I believe in their mission. Anything that I write will be my own, original, genuine thoughts. ~Mr Rogers Play Quote

When it comes to teaching our kids, I am a big believer in what I like to call fun-ducation. This is essentially when you make learning something that is fun and enjoyable. This can be done in a variety of ways and it doesn’t even have to be something formal. Your kids can actually learn a lot just from being kids.

One thing that I have learned as an Educational Psychologist, former early childhood educator, former professional nanny, mother, and now as a homeschooling mom is that learning through play is a very real and effective method.  Through play, our children and students can develop a healthy and even eager love of learning about the world and the various things that compose it.

There are a ton of different ways that children can play.

Active Play: This includes running around in the yard; climbing on play structures (or trees, if you have really daring kids); riding bicycles, scooters, and skateboards, and all of those other activities that get their blood pumping and involves gross motor skills.

♥Quiet Play: This includes things like reading, drawing, coloring, etc. 

♥ Cooperative Play: This includes the many activities that have a social aspect where it takes more than one person to do it, such as hide and see, games, etc

♥ Solitary Play: This type of play doesn’t require a partner. 

♥Manipulative Play: This involves activities that require fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination, such as playing with Legos, cutting, gluing, and puzzles. 

♥Creative Play: This includes activities that let the imagination soar. Things like storytelling, painting, drawing, music, mind puzzles, etc. 

♥Dramatic Play- This involves pretending and includes activities like playing dress-up, make believe, putting on a play, playing out scenes with dolls and action figures, etc. 

Through play, kids can learn how to interact with the world and each other. They can explore and experience new things. They learn about cause and effect. They make mistakes and learn from them. They are faced with obstacles and conflicts and have to figure out how to work through them. They grow and develop all types of skills. It’s pretty amazing to watch!

Donaldson Play Quote

 

One program that seems to recognize the value of learning through play is Better Beginnings. They recognize not only the importance of early childhood education, but also the critical role that parents, teachers, and caregivers play. It is our job to make sure that our children are being educated in a way that is most beneficial to them, and this begins during early childhood — not just when they are school age. We have to focus on giving our children a better beginning in life.

This program helps parents and teachers to prepare our children for success in school and life by taking the standpoint that everything can be a learning opportunity. If you would like to learn more about what Better Beginnings stands for as well as the services and resources they offer, I encourage you to watch this short video. I am thrilled to announce that I am now an ambassador for Arkansas Better Beginnings. I am confident that this is the perfect match for me. Not only am I passionate about children and education, I also have my Masters in Educational Psychology and am homeschooling my son (we started our homeschool year on Monday, yay!). I am excited to have this opportunity to learn even more about early childhood education and relay what I am learning to you guys. For example, check out all of the awesome learning activities that they share on their Pinterest page.

I look forward to continuing talking to you guys about what I am learning throughout this homeschool journey and as a new ambassador for Better Beginnings. In fact, I have a conference coming up in October that I am really excited about! Until then, I hope you continue to tune in to my posts. 🙂

~The Required FTC Disclaimer: As an ambassador for Arkansas Better Beginnings, I am compensated for some posts. However, I am doing this because I believe in their mission. Anything that I write will be my own, original, genuine thoughts. ~

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