Thinking Exercises in Preschool Children
Thinking is a mental process in which both hemispheres of the brain are involved. It includes the ability of a person to reason, generalize, compare the manifestations of reality and draw conscious conclusions from what is happening.
In order for your child to study easily in school and achieve success in adulthood, it is necessary to start developing thinking from a very early age.
Currently, there are many techniques and exercises that will help you, without much difficulty, in the process of playing, develop different types of thinking in your child.
Bologny magazine experts have selected for you the most interesting and effective methods that are suitable for developing thinking in preschool children.
Thinking development of preschoolers
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Thinking in a preschool child is developed in different directions with the help of games, visual aids and objects.
How to develop imaginative thinking in a child
One of the most popular and interesting games for the development of imaginative thinking for a child is called “Name it in one word.” For this, you can use both real objects (toys, household items, etc.) and pictures.
For example, ask your child to name the objects in the picture in one word. It can be:
- plants and more.
Puzzles cope well with the development of figurative thinking. To understand how to assemble them, the child will first need to carefully examine the picture and highlight the important details in it. And then look for the common in details and images.
At first, you will need the help of an adult, but very soon your child will be able to cope with the puzzles on their own, and it will be possible to buy sets with a lot of parts.
How to develop logical thinking in a child
A preschool child’s logic can be developed both with the help of speech games and using visual aids.
- “Association”. Helps develop not only thinking, but also imagination, memory and vocabulary. During the game, the adult invites the child to create a logical chain of words, while he himself calls the first word. The main rule is not to repeat yourself. For example, “winter – snow – frost – New Year – gifts – tree, etc.”
- ” Yes or no”. There can be many variants of the game both with the use of visual material and without it. For example, an adult asks various questions or makes statements that the child must answer yes or no to. “It’s terribly cold in summer”, “Do fish fly?” “Our cat is green” “It is raining outside?” etc.
- “We are composing a fairy tale.” In this game, an adult starts a fairy tale and then invites the child to continue it. During the story, you can ask leading or clarifying questions.
Using visual materials:
- coming up with fairy tales or stories based on various illustrations;
- assistance to the fairy-tale character in the passage of the labyrinth (according to a picture or made by an adult in advance from scrap materials);
- drawing up geometric shapes from counting sticks;
- building figures from a constructor or cubes, etc.
Logical thinking in preschool children can also be developed with the help of puzzles, rebuses, riddles, dominoes and much more.
How to develop creative thinking in your child
The development of creative thinking affects the child’s imagination and the ability to manipulate images.
The following techniques and games can be used to form creative thinking:
- “Non-traditional drawing”. Helps to fully reveal the creative potential of the child. This technique uses fingers, palms, prints, stamps, soap bubbles, salt, foam rubber and much more. There are also different ways of non-traditional drawing – with dots, monotype, “splash”, blotting and others.
- “Guess.” An adult describes any object, and a child must guess and name it.
- “Find the same signs.” The adult invites the child to find the same signs in different pictures.
- “Collect the item.” From various parts of the constructor, the child must assemble the object proposed by the adult.
- “Blot”. The adult invites the child to examine the blot and say who it reminds him of.
The development of creative thinking in childhood will help your child in the future to find non-standard solutions to even the most difficult tasks and projects.
How to develop a child’s spatial thinking
Developing this type of thinking will help your child to better navigate in space.
The following exercises are great tools for this:
- draw a line or draw a shape on a piece of paper with your eyes closed;
- move objects further or closer, left or right;
- find the treasure according to the blueprint;
- build a figure from counting sticks and others.
In order to fully develop the child’s spatial thinking, it is enough to devote 5-15 minutes to classes a day, depending on age.
How to develop critical thinking in your child
The ability to think critically will help your child to cope with the adaptation in elementary school more easily. This skill must be developed in childhood, since it is much more difficult for an adult to form it fully.
One of the best ways to develop critical thinking skills is to ask your child detailed questions that do not involve only a yes or no answer.
This can be done in different ways. For example, watch a cartoon with your child. Some time after the start of viewing, press pause and invite him to tell his version of the development of the further plot. You can help with leading or clarifying questions. Then watch the movie and together discuss the real ending of the story and the child’s version.
Discuss your prohibitions with your child and invite him to determine for himself why he should not do something. For instance, “Why do you think I don’t let you walk in the puddles?”…
When developing thinking in preschool children, it is important to remember that this must be done in different directions. You cannot bring up a full-fledged personality if, for example, you are engaged only in logical or creative thinking.
When choosing games and exercises, be sure to consider the age and personality of your child. For the youngest children, classes should last no more than 5 minutes, and by the age of 6-7 they can be extended to half an hour.
What educational games to play with a child – said Ekaterina Patrina, teacher
Some of the games suggested above will require more time and attention from the parents, while some other games can be played without special time allocated to them. In any case, parents should understand that all this is an invaluable contribution to the life of the child and to his future. For example, the game “Associations” can be played on the way to kindergarten, to school, or just on a walk.
Among the proposed games, all are important and they all need to be given the same amount of time to grow a full-fledged personality. However, based on my experience with students and adults, I would recommend that parents pay special attention to critical thinking games. If you don’t develop it in childhood itself, it will be even more difficult to develop it in adulthood.
In English classes, I often have to work with people who have a higher education, a prestigious job, family, and a range of interests. But in almost every lesson, they have difficulty with a detailed answer to the question, often getting along with short “yes” and “no”, although the topics for discussion can be very simple: movies, travel, work, friends. It is impossible to learn to speak a foreign language without detailed answers, which is why in my classes I often teach students to think critically, although all this can be learned much easier in childhood.
How to develop preschool children – said Maya Makieva, child psychotherapist
Preschool children are actively exploring the world and therefore have a great curiosity about everything that is happening around. They eagerly absorb all the information that adults offer them, as they dream of growing up, becoming smart and strong as soon as possible. Therefore, it is simply impossible to overestimate the role of parents in shaping a child’s thinking.
Games are of great importance in a toddler’s life. It is during the game that the most rapid and qualitative development of the child’s imagination takes place, the active work of all thought processes and the assimilation of new information, since the child wants to learn and do something new precisely through the game. It is through the game that parents have the opportunity to convey important information to the child, to form the values and rules of their child’s life, since in the game the child is ready to listen and hear you.
This article presents excellent options for short-term games that will allow you to develop all types of thinking, diversify your communication with your child, and spend time with him with benefit and interest. But remember that these games should be strictly dosed, and if you see that the child starts to get tired, finish the game on time.
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