Areas of Development via Sensory Play
By providing opportunities to explore, you’re helping children identify their likes and dislikes, how they learn best, and what calms them or excites them. Even before birth, babies study their environment through their five senses. As they grow, their senses become their most elementary way of exploring, knowing, and processing information from the planet around them. Children learn through meaningful experiences, so it’s important that we encourage these sorts of sensory activities where they will celebrate and use all of their senses together. There is a vast world of activities and materials to explore which can be used to help stimulate our senses.
Our challenge as parents and teachers is to supply enriching experiences for our youngsters. Although sensory materials are often very motivating for them, it can be challenging for the adults managing the play as the activities can often cause chaos and disorder. At times like this, we must keep in mind the exponential benefits that come with sensory experiences:
By experimenting with materials and shapes, children develop mathematical skills like classification and categorization. Also, dealing with concepts such as more vs less, full vs empty, immersion vs floating, Multiple Simultaneous Attention, Pattern Recognition are very useful. Scientific concepts such as cause and effect, and gravity (when the water goes down a funnel) also are explored. These experiences enable children to work on their decision-making skills, which also can seep into figuring out conflict management.
Youngsters can quickly develop their language skills when describing experiences, they have encountered, particularly those which they find interesting and engaging. Sensory experiences can be designed to be very scintillating and stimulating for little ones. It is also possible for pre-writing skills to be developed because fine motor skill practice: lacing beads, play dough, interlocking building blocks, finger games, craft projects, buttoning, and more help toddlers develop pre writing skills.
Social and emotional development:
Social and emotional development means how children start to understand who they are, what they are feeling and what to expect when interacting with others. As children control their experience during sensory activities, it enables them to develop and enjoy their decision-making ability. They anticipate what will happen as a result of their actions, make observations, and form conclusions, all while learning to cooperate with others. As children work together, they learn to understand and process differing points of view (as far as their comprehension would let them), by playing alongside their peers. They also work on their confidence and abilities to share their ideas with others. Playing and having fun is also a very effective tool to alleviate tension.
Children practice and strengthen their fine motor skills as they pour, measure, mix, churn, and handle various materials. They learn to regulate their bodies and to offer you directions for tasks as they explore.
Sensory experiences provide opportunities to use materials in fun and diverse ways. There are multiple games and sensory activities which will stimulate this sensory development in children, which is a key skill in our world today as we strive to become a more innovative world.