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January Blog 2022: Children of the Pandemic.

January 30, 2022

Children of the Pandemic.

 

Umbrella in the rain - Illustrations by Joanna Howell

Although there is growing evidence that children have been greatly disadvantaged by the pandemic, will this have lasting long term effects, or can we compensate for these lost years?

Children born during the coronavirus pandemic have significantly reduced verbal, motor and overall cognitive performance compared with children born before, studies suggest.

Those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds scored lower in tests, researchers have found.

The first few years of a child’s life are critical to their cognitive development. But with limited stimulation at home and less interaction with the outside world, Covid-19 triggering the closure of businesses, nurseries, schools and playgrounds, life for infants changed considerably, with parents stressed and stretched as they tried to balance work and childcare.

  • What can we do about this?

If we know that the pandemic has made a significant difference to the learning of preschool children, we must address this balance.

  • Play and play some more

Play promotes cognitive, physical, social, and emotional well-being in young children.

  • Reading to children

Reading stories together

Re-discover the joy of books, reading and sharing stories with children. The best principle has always been the same as fruit and vegetables…five a day. Some boys are not ready to read until they are nine years old, so audio books are more accessible for them. These can be a powerful way to re-engage boys with the world of literacy.

National Storytelling Week is a chance to promote and encourage storytelling in your classroom and takes place 30 January – 6 February, 2022.

Be ready to talk to children about their reading. Do not ever feel they are too old to be read aloud to.

Now that libraries are open again, use them.

  • Outdoor learning

Access the outdoors in all weathers.

  • Home Learning

Evidence shows that the home learning environment, the learning opportunities, and activities parents create and do with children in the home (such as reading, drawing, and singing nursery rhymes), and demographic characteristics (such as parent education level and socio-economic status), are among the strongest predictors of children’s development in the early years.

 

Remember we must make a difference and compensate for the lost time of the pandemic.

 

Reading together - Illustrations by Joanna Howell