Housekeeping Learning Space For Children
Day in day out, children observe their parents cooking at the stove, cleaning the house with broom and mop. Most children pick up responsibility, learning to clean up after themselves and taking care of his friends and family through watching their parents.
In most childcare centers, there are housekeeping learning corners. In these corners, children perform one of the most important form of play – pretend play. Pretend play helps children to enhance their imagination and develop their creativity by using symbolic objects as things they see around them. For instance, a doll as a baby, pretending to eat plastic tomatoes and carrots and cleaning the “house” with a child-size broom. These activities do more than keeping the children occupied during the half-hour session. Although most early childhood teachers know the importance of these forms of play, parents often overlook the significance of it and often dismiss it as “just playing”.
When a child is playing at the housekeeping corner with his friends or siblings, he expand his oral language while communicating with his playmates and picks up new phrases and builds his vocabulary. He is also developing socially by learning to share his toys. He takes pride in being able to perform duties he often see adults doing and feel confident at his capabilities.
A child imitates and projects his understanding of family and home through playing at the housekeeping corner. Through this activity, he begins to understand the roles and responsibilities of other people, for instance, in most families, mothers cook and, perhaps, fathers help to clean up after each meal. He will gradually develop a positive view of his capabilities and may start to want to help out at home as well.
There are many items that can be placed in the housekeeping corner to enhance the child’s play experience, such as dolls, uniforms and costumes, telephones and stoves with pots and pans. Placing familiar objects, even if they are toys, gives the children the chance to explore and make sense of the world around them. Child-safe play dough can be provided for the children to make “cookies”. Through kneading the dough and cutting them with cookie cutters, the toddler can develop his fine and gross motor skills. By providing uniforms at the housekeeping corner, the child can pretend and assume the role of a police officer, fire fighter or nurse.
Children never develop in one area at a time. After many years of working with children, early childhood educators realize the importance of holistic education. Giving children the chance to explore and play is important, but more beneficial for the children is guided play, meaning parents and educators providing developmentally appropriate materials and toys and creating a comfortable and fun corner for them. Children are learning new things everyday, with the help and guidance of adults or even older children, they can reach their potential and have fun at the same time. So never think that kids are only playing with toys and wasting time, they are learning and growing through play.…