In a few weeks I will have been a parent for 10 years. In that time I’ve watched my kids learn and grow through building sandcastles, making mud pies and creating weird and wonderful things out of cardboard boxes.
We have role-played countless tea parties, “mums and dads” and doctors, which is always handy when you need a lie down.
And over the years many a painting has adorned my walls (even when I didn’t commission a mural!).
Life is indeed colourful when you are raising little people of different ages and stages. Mine are two, six, eight and nine years old, so I’m constantly observing their growth and development and little quirks in their playing and learning styles.
I am a big believer in play-based learning, from the early years to primary school and beyond. Outdoor play, musical play, sensory play, and messy play (that’s the type of play my kids love the most!) – if it’s fun, the learning’s happening.
So, here’s how it works in practice. We were delighted to receive a box from Officeworks’ Learn and Grow collection (which has more than 4200 products all up), so I got to experiment with how different items fit into my kids’ styles of play for their particular ages and personalities:
The artistic one: My nine year old.
My eldest-born is perhaps the most artistic of the four. She favours arts and creativity and immerses herself fully into any creative experience. Give her some paint brushes, a blank canvas and she can while away hours of artistic expression.
It’s a joy to watch her paint as she is entirely focused and present. In many ways it’s an example of mindfulness as well as art. Her aunty is an artist and I think my daughter has inherited her talent.
She enjoys painting landscapes of places we’ve been to, and those that are in her imagination. The fluoro colours and glitter paints are her favourites from the collection.