“Children just need the time, the space and the permission to be kids.”
- Angela Hanscom
This quote has never been more true than it has been in the past few weeks. We have turned on the access to our water feature and the sandbox and to say the children were excited was an understatement. The Educators have observed the children displaying all sorts of different play from our playbook which can be found on the RisingOaks website.
It has been quite evident that the children learn through play. The children have been scaffolding on their social skills. We have seen most of the children participating in social play as they dig a hole in the sand, and then use buckets to fill the hole with water. We have seen symbolic play as the children have used loose parts in the sandbox to represent objects. Dramatic play is observed daily as the children pretend that they are making sand castles at the beach. Children have also taken on the responsibility of watering the garden and showing compassion to our plants. They use containers to fill and then go and water the flowers. We see their sense of pride and accomplishment as the children tend to our garden.
While observing the children, we have seen pure joy as they are engaged in their play. With all of the changes in the past year, our group as a whole understands and takes pride in providing educational experiences rich in learning, of course while keeping safety measures as a priority. Adding elements of sand and water to the outdoor space has given us all a sense of “normalcy” and hope for what the future will bring.