New research shows that parents who support their children by learning at home under the age of 5, particularly under the age of 3, will give their children a greater advantage once they start school.
Learning at home can happen through a range of activities:
Play - role play such as making a cup of tea or building a road/train system, making up stories, using more descriptive language.
Home routines – counting the stairs as you go up them, helping with the washing, pairing up socks, setting the table, recycling, manners at the table.
Leisure activities such as cooking, walking, going to the park, playing catch, gardening.
Fun events such as going to the beach and taking part in community events such as the carnival. Going on a bus or train. Bug hunts.
Sports such as swimming, bike rides, football clubs or simply kicking a ball about on the local green.
Local trips - to the library, local woods, Holme woods, picking blackberries, walks around the village, the lock at Nene Park, counting ducks and swans, going to a zoo or to a farm or even to a farm shop to get some eggs, visiting local or specialist shops, scarecrow trails.
Cultural - children’s performances at local theatres, visiting places of interest either locally such as Burghley House gardens to see the deer or visiting other towns or cities, monuments etc.
Curriculum related activities - such as nursery home learning and the reading and sharing of books. Choosing books from the nursery home library.
These activities provide lots of opportunities to interact with your child, broaden your child’s vocabulary, explore the unknown, gain new knowledge and skills and develop their self esteem.
Furthermore, spending quality time and interacting with your child will improve their reading and learning ability in school and improve their future prospects.