Play is the foundation for learning and development in Early Childhood Education. At Greenwood, we are committed to supporting Children to grow, through providing a play and interest based curriculum. One of the ways that Greenwood promotes this learning and development is through the creation of constructive or manipulative play activities.
One of the most prevalent toys used for Constructive and Manipulative learning provided at Greenwood, can be found in many of your homes. Since its creation in 1940, Lego has become a household name. With so many hidden benefits, Lego is not just a toy rather it is a tool for learning.
At Greenwood, Lego is used to promote the development of a variety of skills including; fine motor, hand-eye coordination, problem solving, beginning the foundations of geometry, spatial awareness, counting, colour recognition, creativity, imagination, communication and critical thinking. Many of these skills are incorporated into our G Whiz program, which promotes the mathematical knowledge of Children.
Children learn each of these skills individually and with their Educators. As Children play, they begin by using their imagination to visualise what they are going to construct, this creativity then leads to improving fine motor and hand eye coordination skills as they manipulate the Lego building process. Consequently, this allows the development of spatial awareness which is demonstrated as Children work out which pieces of Lego would fit together, and which pieces would allow them to extend their object. With Educator support, these learning areas can be enhanced further through scaffolding as they ask prompting questions. For example, asking the Child a question prior to building allows them to plan their outcome, and then asking what they created at the end, allows the Child to critically reflect on their learning. This then opens up conversations about other mathematical concepts such as; colours, shapes, sizes, and problem solving process undertaken when working with the Lego.
To promote this learning, on the 14th of April we will be celebrating the birthday of Ole Kirk Kristiansen, the founder of Lego, by exploring the theme of “My Hero” with Lego. The Preschoolers at each of our Centres will be encouraged to build a Lego Creation of their hero and write a brief description with their parents about why they are their Hero. We hope that this Competition provides engaging opportunities between your Child and your Family as they learn through play and more specifically enjoy some Lego Learning.