Every parent wants to set up their child for long term success. Part of this includes helping them learn from books and games. Another important area to focus children’s learning is on fundamental movement skills.
Fundamental movement skills give young children the ability to move and be active with confidence and competence as they grow. Between the ages of 0-six, focus on helping your child learn:
Canadian Sports for Life recommends kids aged 0-six do regular, daily physical activity that is fun, allows opportunity for exploration of risk (within reason), and uses a variety of toys and equipment.
How can you support your toddler or pre-schooler in developing fundamental movement skills?
Keep it simple by allowing kids to simply “do their thing”. There’s no need for intense fitness routines. Avoid early specialization – most successful athletes explored a many different sports in their youth and did not focus on their specialty until later.
Provide a good play environment. If indoors, this may depend on your child’s age and the space you have available. Outdoor play on the other hand gives your child time to connect with nature and practise their movement skills. Adventure playgrounds and “nature kindergarten” are great examples of outdoor play environments.
It doesn’t have to cost a penny. A couch cushion easily becomes a fort wall and a pot and wooden spoon becomes a music toy.
All in all, don’t overthink it. If there’s fun involved, you’re on the right track.