Creating A More Hands On Learning Environment For Preschoolers!
Let’s face it…creating a safe and developmental appropriate environment for young students can sometimes be easier said than done. Trust me, I know first hand what it takes to create an enviorment that is safe, and also rich in learning experiences for every child.
Let’s also not forget that every student learns differently, and some need more hands on direction than others. Needless to say, children really do thrive in a enviorment that allows them to explore, and make real connections. Ive been a preschool teacher for 7+ years and over noticed a huge difference in my classroom atmosphere when I offer my students activities, and learning centers that allow them to truly explore!
I often notice the room is more calm, and less fights break out. Now don’t get me wrong, kids are kids and having to break up a fight or two throughout the day, kind of goes without saying!
But…..When I offer hands on learning activities my class tends to thrive, I notice a huge difference!
Creating an environment that has mostly hands on learning activities, definitely takes time, and isn’t something that happens overnight! in fact it is an ongoing adjustment! However it doesn’t have to be so complex, I believe its defiantly attainable and i want to help others get there! So…..here are my top tips on creating a hands on learning environment!
First, Use what you have already!
Often times, when creating a more hands on learning enviorment you may already have things around the classroom that can be repurposed and used to create another hands on learning activity! Using what you have keeps you from breaking the bank on new learning toys, and games. And lets face it, we all know kids tend to gravitate towards the things that are natural resources ( cardboard boxes, sticks, loose parts textiles, and much more…)
Second, Keep It Simple!
Something that I have to remind myself to do on a daily bases! Keep it Simple! I often times come up with extravagant ideas, and if im honest…. I truly believe my students have the best time when the activity is simple and open ended. Allowing them free range to create, explore, and come up with their own fun ways to play with the resources!
So is simple…just keep the activities simple and trust me your students will love it!
Third, Be Creative
Call me weird…….but coming up with new hands on learning activities for my students excites me! I typically like to observe them playing, while listening to their conversations! Thats when I come up with the best hands on activities! There is nothing more exciting then creating engaging activities and watching my kids fully engage in what i’ve developed! So stay creative, and keep a journal near by. I can’t begin to tell you the amount of times that Ive been in the middle of something, when the perfect idea comes to me! So I like to keep a journal near me, just in case!!! There is nothing worse than coming up with an idea, to only forget what it was when you get time to jot it down!
So there you have, these are my simple tips to creating more hands on learning experiences for your students!
Whats the one thing that your students love to play with, that’s inexpensive, and something you already have laying around your classroom? Id love to hear from you!!!