The Whole Child
Growing Minds:
Do's and Don'ts
abc's of child development
for parents
for early care providers

Do's and Don'ts
Dos and Don'ts

Try This At Home
Try This At Home

Also of interest

PBS Sites
Related PBS Sites


Reading List
Reading List

Parents Forum
Parent's Forum

Things to Remember
  • Let your children's teachers know about what interests them and what they're curious about. Find out if other children in the class share an interest of theirs and if the teacher is willing to let the children explore their ideas through projects in the classroom. Offer to help out with these projects and suggest ways the children can find out more about things they wonder about.

  • Follow your children's interests and help them learn from everyday life around them. You can take a child that is interested in your plumbing to a local plumbing supply store or to talk to a plumber. A child who is interested in how his body works can visit his doctor's office or a local children's museum to look at diagrams or models of the body.

  • Children learn through play. Give them the chance to try out their ideas through experimentation with materials or dramatic play. For example, if your child is wondering how carpenters build stairs, he can experiment by building with blocks. Try to give him plenty of time to test out his ideas on his own.

    Things to Avoid

  • Avoid answering your children's questions immediately. First ask them for their ideas and what they think.

  • Try not to criticize your children's ideas or opinions when they do tell them to you, even if you think they are incorrect! Listening to them and respecting what they say will encourage them to share their thoughts more often. You will help your child's thinking more by asking questions rather than by insisting on a correct answer.
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