Ask any child under 5 what their favourite activity is, and the chances are, they'll shout out "water play"!
At Kids Count Pukekohe , our teachers enjoy this almost as much as our children, and during the summer months many happy times are spent sprinkling, sloshing, squirting , splashing and laughing as waterplay becomes a focus of fun. Children benefit from the relaxing , repetitive nature of scooping, pouring and running their hands through the water as well as questioning exploring and predicting what will happen to water in various forms.
Waterplay encourages an appreciation for the natural world, through sensory exploration and enjoyment, it provides opportunities to develop fine and gross motor skills through all ages. Water is a natural material that provides hours of fun, children learn while having fun with a natural resource that has multiple purposes in both work and play. Not to mention hours of fun.
Closely followed by waterplay is sand play another favourite here at Kids Count Pukekohe. We are lucky enough to have a lovely big sandpit where the children gather together and let their imaginations and creativity run wild.
Sand play is fantastic in aiding development by improving the coordinative, interactional and creative aspects of your child's brain. Sand play provides opportunities for children to explore with their senses as they feel, look, taste and hear whilst developing many science and basic math concepts, such as exploring, estimating, experimenting, measuring and constructing it brings delight and develops social competence. The repetition of filling up a bucket and tipping it out over and over is about perseverance and skill. Children learn strategies for active exploration, thinking and reasoning.
Most of all it is fun.