Every Child is Unique &
When a child is born (Ooh I nearly burst into
song there!) as parents, carers, we encounter the biggest learning curve of our
SUPRISE there isn't an instruction booklet for
each child. Yes there is a lot of research, advice, books, old wives tails etc.
But when we think about it, how much of this is helpful for our
So what to do I hear you say? I
don't mean to panic you, apologies if this is the case. I'm not an
expert, but I do have many years of experience, and to me, now, it seems
When baby is born, they are new to the world and
interested in finding out about everything, and wow what a lot to cover.
Initially, baby's instinct is to survive. They are super clever, as they
realise that they need to rely on their main carer/s for this. They quickly
link the voice, that they have heard from inside the womb, with the face.
I know how clever are they!
They rely on us adults to provide all the basic
needs, such as, food, warmth, care and love. Equally, they rely on us to
prepare them for their unique journey through life. (I know, what a mammoth
Easy right! When the basic needs are being met
and baby is happy, the rest follows. Apparently!
Maslow (1943) through observation
identified a hierarchy of needs. In order for us to reach our
full potential, the most basic needs must be met and
therefore build the foundation for everything else. Professionals
use this as an approach to teaching.
Senses play a big part in
development from the beginning. Baby relies on their senses of touch, taste,
smell, hear and see. Although, their sight is the last sense to develop after
birth (this is natures clever way of protecting them from overload).
The senses are the foundation
to all learning and finding out about the world. How we listen, see, feel about
experiences, is unique and individual to us all. Opportunities to develop these
senses enables us to learn and find out more. This is why it is important to
offer multi-sensory experiences from the beginning and continue to do so
throughout our life. Learning experiences using all our senses are more
likely to be remembered and built upon, making this experience strong.
professionals observe babies/children as they use Treasure
Baskets. Children discover how things work, how they feel, what will fit,
differences, likes/dislikes, smells, textures, numeracy, literacy, language, manipulation,
motor skills etc. As children get older, its a good idea to include items
that interest them personally, for example; wheels, colours, containers
etc. Following their interests through sensory experience will enable them
to learn in their own unique way.
As we get older, we
remember experiences built through sensory perception. For example,
a family holiday at the beach, the smell, sound, taste, feel of the sand,
sea, breeze etc, stay with us. Making this a happy memorable learning experience.
I remember working out how to balance on the rocks, while looking for
crabs (Motor skills). Learning that if I filled my bucket too full, then it
would over flow (Capacity, Volume, working out, Maths). Making a sand
pie was a challenge, too wet and it would stay in the bucket, too dry
and it would fall down (Maths & science). Working together as
part of a team with my brothers and dad as we collected shells, crabs, pebbles
(Language, maths, team skills, sorting, choice, social skills). I quickly
learnt about crunchy sandwiches! Brilliant memories, lots of
exploring and learning while using all senses.
As parents, we aren't always
aware of the learning experiences involved while rummaging through a draw,
going to the beach, park, reading, writing etc. I know I did a lot with my
children when they were small, but I didn't realise the learning
potential. Through experience, I now have a better understanding.
I am keen to
help families and support children to reach their potential. I
regularly get asked about what will be best for children to help them through
situations, help focus, calm, thinking, learning. My answer to this is tell me
about your child. How old are they, what are they interested in, do they have a
favourite colour, what do they like/dislike? This really does help me to build
a picture of your unique child. I'm keen to get it right for them. They are
Sensory Treasures provides
opportunities for all ages through Treasure Basket and fidget bags. In some
cases a mixture of natural items and fidgets are most suitable. www.sensorytreasures.co.uk
I hope that you found this
helpful and great if you want to chat