Children begin learning the moment they are born. In addition to helping toddlers memorize colors, numbers, and letters, it is important to include activities that promote cognitive development. It is essential that parents take advantage of the early years so that children are better equipped to handle preschool, elementary school, high school, and beyond.
What is Cognitive Development?
Cognitive development involves the establishment of your toddler’s thought process. This includes using their five senses to perceive the world around them, developing problem solving skills, and learning how to make informed decisions. Focusing on cognitive development at an early age is also a great way to foster a lifelong love of learning.
While it may seem a bit tiring to hear your little one ask “Why” for the 10th time in one hour, that question is essential to their cognitive development. Always encourage children to explore new objects, places, and situations, and ask questions about those experiences. This is how they will learn how something works or why certain actions produce certain results.
Encourage Imaginative Play
There’s a reason why young children love to play house, doctor, or superhero. It gives the kids a chance to put into practice the things they learn, such as asking a parent to order food as if he or she was at a restaurant and then preparing that food in their toy kitchen. When participating in imaginative play with friends, kids learn what is socially acceptable.
Encourage the Use of Puzzles
Puzzles are a great way to help children develop problem solving skills. Certain pieces will only fit in a puzzle when placed in a specific direction. Young children can start off with a simple 5-piece wooden puzzle, while older children can graduate from 100-piece puzzles and move on to more thought-provoking and elaborate puzzles, like those offered in popular escape rooms.