The early years of a child’s life are the foundation in developing their lifelong skills. This is the period when their curiosity is at its greatest. The best part is that we get to help feed that curiosity and help develop their love of learning. Finding ways to encourage a child to look closely at the world around them is one way to feed their curiosity and it is really not that difficult.
Looking closely at the world around them includes a love for the outdoors and the things that live there, including bugs. Keep in mind that many children that are afraid of bugs have learned this fear directly from their parents or an older sibling. With you calmly by their side, they should be able to get past any unfounded fears that they have.
Bugs inside the home are not a good thing, but bugs in the backyard are an ideal opportunity to help your child discover a small part of the wonders that are in the world around them. They make for an excellent adventure and can become the topic of interest for days.
If you can find an ant hill, sit and watch as the ants come in and out carrying their food. Spider webs are quite beautiful when you look at the design. Not to mention the fact that there is usually a fly or two that has been taken care of by the web.
Bees and butterflies, caterpillars, squirrels, birds, lightening bugs, stink bugs, worms, moths; the list of bugs and wild animal related adventures is pretty long. It’s surprising how much fun children can have while they learn about the world right in their own back yard.
Throughout the year, your backyard play time will have many different animal type activities available to you. When you find one to explore, be sure to talk about the “family” of each….
– I wonder if this is a Mommy or a Daddy,
– Where do you think their family lives?
– The small one may be a sister / brother
Identifying bugs as family members helps young children to understand that they are not monsters; it helps them to calm their fears of the bugs. It also stimulates their curiosity.
If you have a leaf or a piece of paper available, it can help you teach your child how delicate the bugs are. Allow one to crawl onto the leaf – if you can get it to. Point out “if we pick it up with our fingers, we could hurt it”.
Using a leaf or a piece of paper will also give you the chance to explore more closely:
– see how fast or slow it moves,
– how many legs does it have?
– can you see his face?
– anything else that you can come up with that applies to this particular adventure.
Encourage your child to look and learn. This will help instill an appreciation of nature in them that should last a lifetime. You could follow-up this type of activity with a trip to the library, or by looking up some online information about their latest adventure. Finding answers to some of the questions that you come up with on your backyard adventure is a very good way to encourage them to look to a book for answers to their questions. These backyard adventures can help your child develop a lifelong love of learning.
Belinda Nelson is a free lance copywriter who enjoys writing on a variety of subjects. Each article is carefully researched and put together for the benefit of the reader. You are invited to find out more and leave your own comment about her findings on the subject of backyard fun [http://www.playgroundwherehouse.com/] by visiting: [http://www.playgroundwherehouse.com/]
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