Dinoduo get Touchy/ Feely
Children are tactile creatures. They love to move around, reaching and touching objects all around them. They love to be hugged and to hug. It is through the tactile system that the child interfaces with the world around them, both people and objects. The tactile system is a very large sensory system – there are sensory receptors spread throughout the whole of the body. Some areas of the body are more sensitive to touch than others.
The tactile sensory system is actually made up of millions of different types of sensory nerve endings. Information from these sensory nerves passes to the brain where the information is processed and helps the child
- To detect where on their body they were touched
- Was the touch light or forceful?
- Was the touch painful or not?
- What was the texture of the item they touched?
- Was it cold or hot?
- Was it rough or smooth?
- How long was the child in contact with the tactile input?
- Did the child like the texture or not?
The information from a large variety of sensory receptors will be integrated in the brain to answer the above questions instantaneously. This all happens while the tactile sensory system simultaneously filters out competing sensory textures such as the clothes on the child or the pressure of the chair they are sitting on. The more exposure the child has to a variety of tactile experience the better able the child is to process and interpret the meaning of the tactile experience. This in turn impacts on how a child develops their fine motor and gross motor skills and their ability to plan motor activities
Does your pre-schooler have loads of energy, running around and jumping everywhere? Yet as soon as you want him to walk from A to B it becomes a chore, whining and complaining “I’m tired”, refusing to walk and looking to be carried or use a buggy. This can be very frustrating and it can be hard to keep your patience. Dinoduo has a few ideas to help those reluctant walkers.
- Start with short, achievable distances and loads of praise when they finish. Once your pre-schooler develops their walking endurance you can begin to lengthen the walks
- Add in a variety of activities to make the walk more interesting, jump over the lines in the footpath , jump onto their shadow, twirl around every time they pass a sign. Add a little story to add to the drama, the ground is breaking”, “Quick, catch your shadow before it gets away on you” or “ There is a strong wind blowing, twirling all the leaves around”
- Play the counting game, pick a colour car and count each time that colour car passes and see how many cars you have passed when you reach your destination. Count signs, count bicycles, count dogs. There are endless possibilities
- Marching along to a song or marching rhyme. Dinodad has a little rhyme that goes “I had a good job and I left , right!”. Marching songs such as “The ants go marching” or “ the Grand old Duke of York “ are great marching songs
- Push along a toy, pram, wheelbarrow, trundle toy
- Pull along a toy on a string or even your dog! (with supervision)
- Stop to enjoy the flowers or blow some dandelion clocks
Remember! Lots of encouragement and praise for your child. Your child is more likely to walk another day if they have had fun!
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Photo by Vidar Nordli-Mathisen on Unsplash