Babies and toddlers explore the world with a profound curiosity and eagerness to learn. They are discovering who they are, what they like and don’t like and, later on, what makes them different from others. Every day, we are contributing to their development through what we say, how we interact with them and how we express our care for them.
In Fundinotots, we support children’s social and emotional skills by creating a safe and engaging learning environment. It is important that activities are age-appropriate and stimulating to make them accessible for young children. For toddlers, it is also the time in their life where they are beginning to have a sense of self-awareness and may realise the presence of other children.
The learning areas that we have set up for the Fundinotots children create opportunities for children to interact with others. It gives us as their carers the chance to help them understand the concept of sharing and taking turns, how to label their emotions and how to understand their feelings. We can model appropriate responses or help them cope when they become impatient or frustrated during play.
It is also our responsibility as early years practitioners and carers to build trusting relationships with the children through play. Some experiences can be overwhelming for young children and may cause fear, such as meeting a new person or trying new activities. We should always be there to reassure them and to help them feel safe. Teachers, parents and carers should always think of ways to show affection to young children through actions and positive praise.