The first years of life are crucial to build a solid foundation for learning and perception. Kindergarten-aged children are very receptive and learn with great ease if they are given the right tools. One of these strategies is sensory development which provides the foundation for future learning. Sensory stimulation is the activation and exploration of our five senses: touch, taste, smell, vision, and hearing.
In our school kindergarten, sensory stimulation plays an important role at this early stage of life. By engaging our children in activities that stimulate their senses, we know that they will successfully develop their cognitive and social skills as well as develop their fine and gross motor skills. That is why we take great care in designing activities that increase our kindergarten children´s sensory awareness.
Visual stimulation: when children play games that involve sight, they are practicing early literacy skills. Sight games help children recognize words, patterns, shapes and objects as well as help them develop their memory. To improve this sense we use flashlights, fluorescent objects and sensory bottles.
Auditory stimulation: children use their ears to take in information about the world around them so listening to music can help children develop their auditory skills. Playing instruments, singing or dancing are activities we do for them to explore different sounds and rhythms.
Taste stimulation: through this stimulation we help our learners develop and control basic processes such as chewing, swallowing, sucking and drooling. Children also start developing their preferences and exploring new tastes such as sweet and sour or textures such as soft and hard.
Olfactory stimulation begins to develop from birth. That is why we offer our learners a comforting atmosphere. They experiment with scents and smells that they recognize as well as through aromatic plants.
Tactile stimulation: children learn about their surroundings, their own selves and about the others through their bodies. Not only do they communicate through touching but it is also the main source of learning. That is why the stimulation of their tactile sense is one of the cornerstones of our activities and projects.
Overall, sensory activities are a vital component of our kindergarten project as we know they can strongly contribute to our young learners´ holistic development in many ways ensuring their academic success as well as their social and personal fulfilment.