Class 1

Teaching Methodology for kids:Children do a lot of growing and developing between the ages of 3 and 9. At 3, children are moving out of babyhood and into childhood. They have rich imaginations, may have strong fears, and love to play physically. As they move through the preschool ages and into school ages, they become more independent and confident about trying new things. Cognitive and language development change dramatically through these ages, as children go from asking the same “why?” questions repeatedly to being able to tell stories in sequential order and enjoying jokes and riddles. Whatever your role in a child’s life (teacher, parent, or other caregiver), there are some ways to make learning productive, fun, and enjoyable for the both of you.Teaching Methodology for kids

Teaching Methodology for kids 1

Teaching through Play and Example

  1. Read to your children. Reading aloud to children is widely recognized as the single most important activity in language development. It builds word-sound awareness, which is a huge predictor of their own reading success. It also builds motivation, curiosity, memory, and of course, vocabulary. When children begin having good experiences with books at a very early age, they are more likely to continue this feeling of enjoyment and confidence with their own reading throughout their lives.

    • Find books with pictures for the younger ages (3-6) and allow children to stop and ask questions or talk about the book during your reading times.
    • Keep a variety of age- and interest- appropriate books around the house or the classroom to foster children’s independent reading. Ask children what they like to read and make those types of books available.
    • Continue reading aloud to older children; they never really become too old for it! Before bed time each night, or at the end of the school day, are perfect times to set aside for this activity.
  2. Play pretend games with your children. Playing house or other types of fantasy play is very important for children’s imaginations as well as their social and language development. They will love nothing more than to have you enter into their little fantasy world.

    • Mimic their activities occasionally. If a child picks up a stone and zooms it around like a car, try picking up another one and doing the same. Chances are they will be delighted.
    • Keep a “prop box” for pretend play in the house or classroom that is filled with empty boxes, old clothes and hats, purses, telephones, magazines, (non-breakable) cooking utensils and dishes, stuffed animals and dolls, fabric pieces or blankets and sheets (for fort-making), and other random items like post cards, old tickets, coins, etc.
  3.  Do arts and crafts. Coloring, drawing, and crafts are not only a great way to keep children entertained on a rainy day, but they also help develop children’s fine motor skills, develop their concepts of colors and numbers, and help them see scientific processes like how glue works. Be sure to use age appropriate tools and materials, like child scissors.

    • For younger kids, try making finger puppets, pasta jewelry, or felt collages together.
    • Older kids often enjoy magazine collages, making pottery, and making masks.
    • Have an “art center” at home or in the classroom where you keep paper, markers, crayons, colored pencils, scissors, glue, and other art materials like felt, foam, pipe cleaners, tissue paper, etc.
  4. Sing songs and play music. Music has long been linked with the development of mathematical thinking. Hearing rhythm and counting beats fosters math skills, and hearing words put to song also fosters language skills. Children also often use music to develop physical skills, because they like to run, dance, jump and skip while music is playing.

    • Sing nursery rhymes to young children. They will love the silly nature and repetition of them, and will learn to sing them along with you.
    • Find popular children’s songs on CD or the web and play them around the house or as a transition time in the classroom.
    • Older children (7-9) may develop a particular interest in an instrument or in singing or dancing. If they do, try fostering this interest with a beginner’s instrument of their own, or in lessons with a music (or vocal or dance) instructor
  5. Play sports together. Even if you’re not the most athletic caregiver in the world, exposing children to sports and playing with them is important for their physical development and motor skills. Sports also teach honesty, teamwork, fair play, respect for rules, and respect for themselves and others.

    • Choose a sport or two you’ll play sometimes with your children and get the necessary things together for playing. For example, get a basketball and find some local courts you can go to, or get a baseball, gloves, and a bat and try organizing a neighborhood game.
    • If you’re a classroom teacher, support your students’ interests in sports by providing sport equipment for recess, asking about their games, and going to see them participate in school or local sport events.
  6. Bring your children along on errands. You’ll want to make this a time- and age-appropriate activity. For example, you won’t want to bring your three-old out for errands during nap time (unless you don’t have a choice), but otherwise, exposing children to errands can help them develop “real-life” skills in a fun way. Explain what you have to do for different errands in a way the children can understand. You’ll also want to keep your list of things to do short to avoid getting the kids overly tired, bored, or frustrated.

    • Set expectations for behavior during errands. Let your child know that while you like having him help pick out cereal at the grocery store, it’s unacceptable to pull things off the shelves himself or whine about not getting every type of candy that’s there.
    • Talk about costs of items and the purposes of different things and services that we buy. Explain how things work in the post office or at the car mechanic. Explain where different food comes from and how it gets transported to our local grocery stores.
    • Remember to slow down. You won’t get errands done as quickly with children as you would without them and that’s okay. Use the time as an educational experience for them.
  7. Ask for their help. Young children naturally love to help. It makes them feel important and valued by you. Foster this feeling into their older years by asking them to help you with various chores. Gradually, through watching and imitating you, they will learn to take over certain chores themselves and develop a sense of responsibility.

    • Ask your preschooler to help you pick up their toys and put them away in the appropriate places. Give praise for being a good helper.
    • Begin giving your older child (7-9) some actual chores for him to complete on his own. Give a small allowance in exchange for completing chores well and without complaining. Advise him to save his allowance earnings toward things he’d like to buy.
    • If you’re in a classroom, develop a rotating system of class jobs for students to complete, such as cleaning the board, wiping desks, passing out papers, collecting homework, emptying the trash can, etc. You can add rewards systems for completing the various jobs as extra incentive.

Teaching Methodology for kids 2

Instructing Directly

  1. Break new information down into small chunks. When you’re teaching something new to a child, you need to remember that what they know is at a different level than an adult level. You’ll need to simplify ideas and start with what they already know. Teachers often refer to these methods of simplifying and building on prior knowledge as chunking and scaffolding.
    • Find out what the child already knows about the new concept and go from there. If you’re teaching new words, use words the child already knows to define the new words. If you use a certain word while explaining and you’re not sure if the child knows it, it’s okay to ask, “Do you know what that means?” If not, use another word to clarify.
  2. Review often. You will probably need to say the same things in different ways multiple times while teaching children, especially if you’re working with more than one child at a time. All children learn at different rates and in different styles, so you should anticipate repeating yourself and practicing some skills over and over again.
  3. Use visual aids. Graphic organizers, pictures, and charts are all helpful in providing children with multiple ways of learning new information. Graphic organizers are specific tools often used in classes for young children that help them to break up (chunk) information into smaller parts. They can use them to organize information into a variety of ways, like sequencing or cause and effect for stories, or categorizing for learning new science terms.

Teaching Methodology for kids 3

Talking to Children

  1. Listen and answer questions. Children will naturally come up with questions while learning something new. Take time to listen to their questions and try to formulate the best answer you can think of that directly answers their question. Sometimes you might have to ask if you understand their question correctly. You can find out by rephrasing it and saying, “Is that what you’re asking?” After you answer, you can ask, “Did that answer your question?”
    • If your child asks questions at home at times that aren’t good for you, be sure to explain to them that it’s not a good time and why. This also goes for any time your child talks to you. Children don’t always understand that sometimes when you’re in the middle of cooking a complicated dinner it’s not a good time to discuss what happened to them that day.
    • Be sure to say, “I really want to hear about that (or talk about that), but right now isn’t a good time. Can we talk during dinner (or at another specified time)?
  2. Speak kindly. It’s important to talk to children, and to other adults while you’re around children, the way you would like for them to talk. Children learn best by imitating. If you want your children to be polite, be sure to use manners. Pay attention to the tone of your voice.
    • Be sure to say “please,” “thank you,” “excuse me,” and “I’m sorry” appropriately while interacting with your children or with other adults in front of them.
    • Listen to the tone of your voice through the child’s ears. Children often pay more attention to tone than they do to what you’re actually saying. Have you ever had a child say to you, “Why are you yelling at me?” when you weren’t actually yelling? This is most likely because your tone sounded angry, frustrated, or unhappy in some way, possibly without you even realizing it.
  3. Take children’s emotions seriously. Children have very strong emotions, and sometimes they are about things that don’t appear important to adults. It’s important to not downplay how a child feels about a certain event or situation. Help children to make sense of their emotions in a helpful way. You can start by saying, “I understand this is upsetting to you. Let’s talk about why you’re upset.” You can then try to calm them down by talking about ways that they can cope with feeling upset, or explaining other points of view that they may not have thought of.
  4. Have patience. Patience is an extremely important quality to have while working with children. It can be a challenge, but the best thing to do is remember when “kids are being kids.” They are usually not intentionally trying to irritate you. Unless they are… and in those cases sometimes you just have to ignore them. When you spend lots of time with kids in any capacity, it’s important to take care of yourself too. Get enough sleep, drink enough water, exercise and eat a healthy diet, and allow yourself some occasional breaks away from them to regroup and gather your thoughts.
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