Tips for Developing the Whole Child

These simple tips can help you work on many areas of development that will help your child become a well-rounded person. They also help extend your child's learning at home. You can find additional suggestions in the other themes.


Talk with your child about position, direction, and distance. For example, when returning home after a walk around your neighborhood, ask your child to tell which places are far from home and which are near it. You can also talk about position, direction, and distance when playing catch. Encourage your child to use words to describe your position and the position of the ball.

Literacy and Language Development

Categorize stories and events as fantasy or realism with your child. Discuss whether the things could or couldn't happen in real life. Distinguishing between fantasy and realism is not only useful when discussing stories but also when talking about other things, such as movies and bad dreams.

Social/Emotional Development

Give positive reinforcement to your child, especially when he or she is working on a challenging or frustrating task. Encourage your child to be patient and take the necessary time to work on the task at hand. Ask your child if he or she needs your help with the task.

Encourage your child to be independent. One way of encouraging independence is by getting ready to go to school in the morning. For example, have your child get dressed by herself or himself. This will not only foster independence but also develop fine motor skills, such as zipping and buttoning, that your child needs to learn and practice.

Health and Safety

Encourage everyone in the household to have a balanced diet. Eat healthy foods, such as fresh fruits and vegetables. Also, have your child try new foods and add them to her or his diet.