Each month, Jackie Hardie, owner of The Nursery, gives advice and guidance on aspects of parenting. Drawing on almost three decades working with early years children, including roles as a Reception teacher and an Ofsted inspector, running an international education consultancy, and of course, being a parent, Jackie gives down-to-earth and practical advice.
This month, Jackie focuses on play dough.
The children make play dough every day at The Nursery.
So why do we place such big importance on this squidgy substance?
Children and even adults enjoy playing with play dough. We instinctively explore the soft squidgy texture through squeezing, kneading and poking. Play dough is amazing, you can change the colour, texture and smell.
Alongside the many learning opportunities that play dough provides it also provides a therapeutic outlet for children and adults. Children who become easily frustrated or cross can use play dough as a calming effect. It provides opportunities for them to knead their frustration out and begin to find their words rather than lashing out.
The learning opportunities are endless with play dough. They allow children to investigate early mathematical concepts such as more and less, use their imaginations, develop language skills, support social skills by developing concepts such as sharing and more importantly children learn without realising!