Stages of development verify the value of activities
According to Child Care Aware, a national child-care resource agency, the stages of development during the preschool years of 3, 4 and 5 show how important it is for children to engage in activities provided by involved parents and a high-quality early child-care center or preschool.Growing those brainsChild Care Aware advises parents not to get too confused by all the research on early childhood brain development. The basic message is very simple. -Good early-care experiences expand your child’s capacity to learn. -Holding, cuddling and talking actually affect how your child’s brain grows. -Loving and supportive child care “programs” the brain to handle stress and control emotions. -The first years of life lay the groundwork for future experiences. -Reading to and singing with your child every day is a simple and effective way to help brain development. Where is your child? What to expectAge 3Intellectual development-Talks in complete sentences-75 to 80 percent of speech is understandable-Enjoys singing and can carry a simple tune-Listens and likes familiar stories told without any changes in words-Interested in similarities and differencesSocial and emotional development-Enjoys playing alone but near other children-Spends a lot of time watching and observing-Enjoys playing with children briefly but still does not cooperate or share well-Enjoys imitating other children and adults-Expresses interest in ethnic identities if exposed to a multicultural settingAge 4Intellectual development-Talks in fairly complex sentences-Has basic understanding of concepts related to number, weight, color, texture, distance, position and time-Asks and answers who, what, when, why and how questions-Asks a lot of questions, including questions about birth and death-Has long attention span and finishes activitiesSocial and emotional development-Enjoys playing with other children-Takes turns and shares most of the time, though may still be bossy-Enjoys dramatic play and role playing-Capable of carrying on elaborate conversations-Seeks out adult approvalAge 5Intellectual development-Understands about 13,000 words-Likes to argue and reason-Has good attention span and can concentrate well-Interested in cause and effect-Is project minded; enjoys planning and executing drawings and toy buildings, for example Social and emotional development-Organizes other children and toys for play-Can take turns and share but doesn’t always want to-Begins to have very basic understanding of right and wrong-Plays contentedly and independently without constant supervision-Can understand relationships among people and similarities and differences in other familiesPrinted by permission of Child Care AwareInformation: http://www.childcareaware. org, 1-800-424-2246
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