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IDEAS TO BOOST YOUR CHILDREN'S CREATIVITY: PLAYTIME SMARTS

from: C P Gray




Play time is the best time to teach your children to develop their creative faculties. The examples below are just some of things you can do to prepare your child as he or she grows. Yes, even at very early ages, kids are already equipped to benefit from education, no matter how simple.



Some parents are not aware of the importance of play time. Play time should never be misconstrued as a useless activity, because in the child's early development stage, it is probably one of the best ways you will be able to communicate with him or her.



Snow and rainy days keep us indoors for longer periods. Not being able to run outside and enjoy the sun will eventually leave your kids in a humdrum mood. But don't let that pop their high spirits. Here are some indoor activities that will help stimulates your little ones' creativity and brains, while enhancing your ability to meet their development needs.



Rattle Time – For ages 0 to 3 months



A newborn has the ability to see even at birth, although she cannot focus both eyes on a single object yet. Her distance vision is blurred, approximately 10 to 30 times poorer than that of most adults. An infant's visual system will not develop unless it is exercised. Focusing distance is at 8 to 10 inches.



Development goals


- practice grasping reflexes


- refine hand-eye coordination


- develop muscle coordination



Materials


- 3 types of rattles



Steps


- Rattles are a must-have for babies. Using more than one color, shape, and size provides variety for your child. Catch the baby's attention by shaking one rattle from a reasonable distance. This encourages her to move her eyes in that direction, and attempt to to grab it from you.


- Call out the child's name and let her see your facial expression as you talk to her.


- After a while, hold another rattle up and shake it again.



Tips


- Provide positive reinforcement when the child successfully grasps a rattle. Say things like, "Wow, you did it! You are playing with the rattle. Listen to the rattle!", "Do it again.", or "Now touch this one."


- To capture the infant's attention, use high-pitched, sing-song style and short utterances. Speak slowly and carefully enunciate.


- When speaking to the infant, place your face very close his face so that he is able to see you.



Caution


- Check the rattles for sharp edges or construction defects. Because rattles contain small pieces, check the rattle occasionally for normal wear and tear. Dispose of defective rattles immediately.



Rockin' the day away – For ages 0 to 3 months



Infants have a lot of tell people around them. They begin so by communicating with cries, grunts and facial expressions. Moreover, they love hearing human voices. Their first cry signifies the beginning of language development. The first responses of their parents and caregivers form their earliest social exchange and language learning.



Development goals


- develop receptive language skills


- practice communications skills



Materials


- rocker



Steps


- Sit in the rocker holding the baby on your lap so that both of you are facing the same direction. Sit by the window, looking out to your back or front yard.


- While rocking, talk about what you see outside. Use as many descriptive words as possible: "Look at your blue elephant. This is your toy."


- Reinforce any vocalizations the infant makes.


- To illustrate, say: "Yes, the elephant is walking away." Doing this may encourage the infant to continue to take part in the "conversation".



Tips


- You can do this before nap time to help the baby relax.


- Variation: singing rather than talking to the infant is just as enjoyable.




Christine P Gray is a recognized authority on the subject of creativity. Her website www.selfimprovementsguide.com provides a wealth of informative articles and resources on everything you will need to know about self improvement. All rights reserved. Articles may be reprinted as long as the content and links remains intact and unchanged.


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