....continuing with the final excerpt from a paper I have written for school...the topic is the essential needs of the child in the 3 phases of early childhood, with an emphasis on how we as adult caregivers and educators can best meet these needs...
The Kindergarten child (5-6.5, 7)
The needs of the child do change during this next big developmental phase…as caregivers, we may begin to hear “I’m bored” or notice a sense and longing for “more”. Involving the children in some of our more dexterous work, such as peeling apples, sweeping with a dust pan and brush, baking, and sewing are all ways we can support this phase. Through such experiences, we show them how to do more; sharing with them our skill set and the love we encompass for the work our hands do.
The stimulus for play is no longer budding from external objects; now it begins to come from deep within. The kindergarten child needs for the play space or environment to be arranged conducive to creative play. This means creating a world suitable for imitation where they experience adults engaged in joyful and purposeful work. This also means that there are ample opportunities for the children to be involved in the work and practical experiences, even if they are not directly a part of it. Freya Jafke has stated, “Creative play depends more on a calm, joyful atmosphere of work rather than on many clever words, suggestions for play, or instructions of any kind.”
It is also noteworthy that an essential need for all 3 phases of early childhood development is that of love and warmth; “the basis for development”. All 3 phases also need and deserve a “ breathing in and out”; a rhythm to the day that is predictable and relevant to life. Perhaps most importantly, all phases truly need an educator who is on a never ending path to self and soul discovery.