~ CDC Director Tim Sullivan
This month I want to start giving you a vision of what happens downstairs in the CDC and talk about why it is important. The first area of learning I want to talk about is sensory play. In this place all our children get chances to learn about their world by exploring it using all their senses, both indoors and out. We take field trips out in nature where the children can touch, smell, feel, and even taste things. We explore plants, sea life, ponds and wetlands, and even snow out around our area. We bring sensory projects into the classroom as well. Some of our favorite activities we use in our sensory tables are water, chocolate pudding, cornstarch and water, soap and oil, and condensed milk with water colors. The possibilities for giving children new sensory experiences are almost endless, and as teachers we love to watch the children learn and grow through this play. Sensory exploration is crucial for children. It builds nerve connections in their young brains, developing pathways which build their ability to complete more complex tasks later in life. It supports language development, cognitive growth, problem solving skills, and — perhaps most important of all — social interaction. Our children have a great time at school exploring their world with all their senses, and it’s amazing to watch. While sometimes it looks just like a mess, our child development professionals at Phinney know how important these experiences are for our children, and take the time to create new learning opportunities for them daily.