We are born with an innate sense of curiosity. Practitioners need to create an environment that nurtures this desire. There needs to be a richness of textures, sounds and sights that babies can safely explore. Reflect upon if the items can be stacked, rolled and posted.
Being able to utilise resources in different rooms with different aged children is really helpful. Practitioners need to be secure in the knowledge that the product is safe for a baby (with the relevant certification), as well as developmentally appropriate. That same resource may then be used in the toddler room. The learning may be completely different. The baby may explore the texture and properties whilst the toddler’s play may be much more complex. Having quality, versatile products helps to offer the children a much broader and richer array of learning opportunities.
The Wooden stacking Pyramids are great for supporting babies’ and toddlers’ interests. Some children use them as ‘grasping toys’ whilst others repeatedly stack them or roll them. Others transport them and place them into baskets or boxes. It is fascinating to watch the high level of engagement children display as they carefully repeat threading the chunky shapes on to the stand. They are able to demonstrate tenacity, patience and increasing hand-eye co-ordination.
Catherine Clark has worked in Early Years Education for many years. She is the in-house educationalist at TTS, consulting and advising on how children learn. She has developed numerous award winning products at TTS. She is passionate about children having enriched, exciting learning opportunities.