Time waits for no one. In a blink of an eye, we will find our little bundles of joy grown up and embark on new adventures: preschool, primary school, and even BIG SCHOOL. As parents, we wonder if they're prepared for the challenges that lie ahead. How can we maximize the precious years we have with our children and help them unlock their full potential?
Fortunately, we live in a time when numerous options abound to keep our children engaged and learning. From gymnastic classes to music and art lessons and so on, we expose them to various interests. Yet, amidst these activities, let's not overlook the time we spend together. How can we transform those moments into fun, interactive, and meaningful learning experiences?
The answer lies in seizing teachable moments. Let's discover how we can make the most of these opportunities to learn and grow together.
Teachable moments are unplanned opportunities that arise naturally to teach important concepts related to learning content, social skills, and moral values(3).
While teachable moments can be spontaneous and unplanned (i.e. such as discovering and following an ant trail during a walk in the park), you can also create them intentionally through the provision of materials (i.e. playing with the calculator to spark curiosity on numbers and arithmetic skills) or by exposing your child to specific environments (i.e. a visit to the aquarium with your child who is interested in sea creatures).
Recognizing and leveraging teachable moments requires an intentional and knowledgeable adult who can extend children's learning in an informal, natural, relaxed, and enjoyable manner (2). Let’s learn to make use of your vast understanding of your children and the world to identify teachable moments in your everyday interactions and experiences.
“What’s that sound?” This simple question that one may ask upon hearing something can spark the imaginative and curious minds. This teachable moment can also be extended to become a mindfulness activity!
Children are naturally curious and inquisitive. Let’s start listening actively to their questions and ideas to help you not only gain a better understanding of your child, but also take the chance to extend the discussion to gain insights and plan for further explorations and experiences.
“What’s that?!” Slowing down or pausing to observe our immediate environments, as pointed out by our children, can lead to numerous surprises and discoveries. Teachable moments can be can be fleeting or extended, requiring time, creativity, and flexibility for everyone to engage in investigation and experimentation.
The prompt, “I wonder…” holds the power to unleash endless learning and discoveries. Embrace the curiosity and use it as a launchpad for exploration.
Thank you so much for having our daughter at your summer camp. She was very excited when she returned and enthusiastically showed and told us everything she did at camp. Many thanks to the whole team for looking after her, the varied and lovely programme and the nice and warm atmosphere at camp.