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Effective learning approach for children post MCO

Children’s primary nature is to play and have fun so the teaching and facilitation process for children (PDPc) is through an informal learning mode.

Few activities are seen to stimulate the children overall but some daily activities that parents do that are very easy to practise together with their children especially in the first few years.

Physical development, for example, occurs for each individual though it differs from one another. A child will go through a phase of sitting, crawling and so on until they are able to walk.

Children as young as two years old can be trained to reach and hold a toy well and then successfully carry the toy in the grip to be put in the container provided. Apart from that, there are other activities that can be practiced by parents at home to stimulate the child’s movements.

Parents should also use appropriate language and intonation techniques according to the situation so that the child’s language and communication can develop in a positive direction.

Two-way communication between parents and children has proven to be effective in helping children having a wider grasp of vocabulary.

Parents who give gadgets to children should also “take part” with them to stimulate the development of their language and communication as opposed to just letting them use the gadget without any guidance.

Cue “Makaton” – a programme that uses signs together with speech and symbols, to enable communication while also supports the development of essential skills such as attention, listening, comprehension, memory and expressive speech and language.

They help children to communicate and can even help to strengthen bonds, words, movements, facial expressions and eye contact between parents.

The issue about learning and relationships between parents and their children emerged following the spread of Covid-19 when Malaysia and countries the world over were subjected to restricted movement.

For us, it’s called Movement Control Order (MCO) enforced since March last year with loosening of restrictions only recently.

That has led to online teaching at home. In this regard, early childhood education practitioners emphasised that parents’ involvement in their children’s development in learning is a positive process.

During MCO, teaching at home or PdPR is one of the most difficult challenges because PdPR involves parents playing the role as ‘teachers at home.’ Parents’ stress is exacerbated because they are not provided with proper teaching materials.

Among the daily routines that are easy to practice during MCO is to watch movie screenings together as it gives the chance for parents to share their thoughts about certain situation on the screen. That sharing can stimulate the minds of children so that they can think more creatively.

However, PdPR indirectly provides an opportunity too for parents to strengthen their bonds with each other where parental involvement is the mainstay. It is undeniable that parents’ involvement in their children’s upbringing, is critical to their holistic development.

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