As we celebrated the Month of The Young Child, even our smallest friends got in on the action. You may think that physical development at the infant age level is more about making sure babies have adequate nutrition to stimulate physical growth, but there is also a lot more that our teachers do to encourage gross motor development in our infant classrooms.
Even the littlest children are placed on their tummies at regular intervals to encourage mobility. This is done on play mats and carpeted areas rather than inside a restricted area such as a playpen, giving babies an opportunity to see more of the world around them and experiment in coordinating their muscles, which they will eventually use to crawl and walk.
Of course gross motor development is not taught and encouraged in isolation. Babies’ physical and intellectual developments are inseparable. Crawling, for example, can improve a baby’s vision, which in turn could affect how easily s/he learns to read and write. It is all interconnected!
And babies love to be held. A lot of the learning that takes place while holding a baby has to do with social, emotional, and cognitive development as teachers talk, sing, and bond with the infants. Physical development is at play here too, though. Rocking and swinging the babies helps improve their vestibular (balance) system.
We spent the first week of April focusing on physical development activities for the Month of The Young child. However, things like tummy time and rocking infants are things that are happening on a daily basis at Care-a-lot and can easily be done at home to encourage physical development in your infant!Read more...