Finding new experiences
When young children are encountering new experiences for the first time here are a few things you can do to support them to make the most of the situation:
Follow don’t lead. Whatever interests them is what you should spend time exploring.
Wonder aloud. When you wonder aloud, children take up the idea and run with it.
This is a great way to draw them in and create their own conclusions about things. A couple of good starters are; ‘‘I wonder what this smells like?’’ ‘‘I wonder what colours are there?’’
Recognize the positive behaviour you want – not the negative you don’t want.
With new things children won’t necessarily know how to behave. Focussing on positive behaviour is a great way to give them the guidance they need. ‘‘I like the way you are watching with your eyes,’’ instead of saying ‘‘Don’t touch’’.
Use your imagination.
Try to imagine what it’s like to have never seen this before, and try to find new ways to explore it so that you’re seeing things for the first time too.
Brenda Holdaway is Whanau Facilitator at Nelson Tasman Kindergartens