Early Childhood Development Areas Of Learning for Teaching Pre K

Play based learning activities and ideas for early childhood development and growth in preschoolers, toddlers and infants.The ‘5’ areas of early childhood development in infants, preschoolers and toddlers are:

Physical (P), Intellectual (I), Language (L), Emotional (E), Social (S).

The information below pertains to various play based learning and programming activities which deal with different areas of early development for children in these various early learning stages.

By programming in the specific areas of development below using suitable educational activities, you can help each infant, preschooler and toddler to progress in their early childhood development and beyond.

P– Gross motor, fine motor, creative movement…

I – Puzzles, file folder games, building type ‘toys’, “cause & effect”…

L– Books pictures, symbols, songs, rhymes, single words with pics…

E– Dramatic play, exploration, art work, real-to-life toys…

S– Solitary activities, play with one friend, two friend situations, etc…

Circle time songs, Games, turn any activity into social time…

*Our website is full of various learning activities and education resources that can be plugged in to these various learning areas of early childhood development and growth.

We expand further on this play based learning curriculum below by answering an email from our fan page.

Areas of Play Based Learning for Children Explained:

*Our fanpage fan ‘Nenet’ asked for some suggestions on the play based curriculum.

Since with play based learning the children are essentially learning through their play and interactions with one another, you will want to make sure the areas they are playing in have a variety of items that they can expand their play and keep their interest going.

You will also want to keep in mind any children with disabilities and make sure there are modifications made when needed to make sure ALL children are included.

Since the preschool children are learning through play you will want to keep all developmental areas in mind when planning each center:






Also as a teacher/parent you are a role model. You will want to engage in play with the children for a short while, ask open ended questions and remove yourself when the children are engaged in play so they can take the lead in their play/learning.

Let’s plan for the block area as an example. Here are some examples of some items that would be great in the block center.

  • Large Blocks
  • Small Blocks
  • Duplo
  • Blocks made of different materials (boxes, bark, plastic)
  • Blocks that open, snap together, or connect
  • Area carpet with a road map/city image on it
  • Masking Tape
  • Paper
  • Pencils
  • People toys
  • Small cars, trucks, motorcycles etc.

That’s a lot of stuff to put in a block center so here are ways to use it:

Put about 5-6 different items listed above on the block shelf or more, or less, depending on the size of your class.

The masking tape can be used by the teacher to make “roads” on the floor.

You will find that some children will prefer the Area Carpet and some children will prefer the masking tape to use when driving the cars and trucks around.

The paper and pencils allow children to expand their play.

Maybe they will draw their favorite store and “drive” to it. Maybe they will draw a garage and put it beside their block house.

This is a great way to include emotional play experiences. Read more below.

How are all 5 developmental areas included in this learning?

Physical – The children are using fine motor skills for grasping and building the materials in the center. They are also using gross motor skills when they need to stand to build their towers high, and when they crawl around the carpet driving their vehicles.

Intellectual – The children have so many materials to use they will need to use their intellectual skills to think about all the different ways they can use these materials separate or together.

Language – The children will have lots to talk about when exploring all of the different materials, while playing with their friends, and when answering the teachers open ended questions.

Emotional – Are the children able to relate to real life experiences while paying with the materials you put out for them.

Is there a toy car that looks like one they have at home?

Is there a “people toy” that they are pretending is someone from their family?

Are they building “their” house?

How do they feel when they are doing these things?

All of these experiences helps them express their emotions whether relating to a personal experience or making new ones with their friends.

Social – The children will have a chance to play together, side-by-side, or by themselves. Whatever they choose will be their social experience. Our goal is to make sure they socialize with their friends at some point throughout the day.

If they choose at that moment however they would rather play alone, then that is their social/emotional decision and should be left to engage in it.

We hope this helps give you some ideas on how to plan for the area of play based learning and other areas of the Pre K classroom.

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