What Kids Like To Do
Parents are naturally concerned about what their child does all day at daycare. Are they watching too much television? Are they getting enough exercise? Are they doing things that make them happy - that will help them in their overall development? A recent survey of 800 American children from across the country gives us a "kids-eye" view of the activities children favour most. Luckily for parents, television isn't the only activity children enjoy.
The study confirms that active, highly social activities like snack time, playing with others, going on outings and making friends outfavour television. Better than 80 percent of the children said they like these activities "a lot".
"This survey confirms the wisdom of what quality child care providers already do: have a wide-ranging curriculum that includes active, social and creatively challenging activities", says Barbara Reisman, executive director of the Child Care Action Campaign.
"The good news is that children overwhelmingly like their child care activities because they can just be kids as they learn and grow," says Kenneth A. Macke, chairman and chief executive officer of Dayton Hudson Corporation, which underwrote the survey on behalf of its Child Care Aware program, a public service education campaign on quality child care. "We want to share the information with working parents as they continue to monitor how their child care arrangements fit their children's needs", he said.
Here's a look at what activities children in both center-based and family daycare enjoy doing.
Having a snack-85%
Playing with others -84%
Going to the playground -83%
Going for walks/outings- 82%
Making friends- 82%
Getting hugs from teachers- 68%
Playing "make believe/dress-up/house -64%
Playing musical instruments -64%
Playing in the sandbox- 61%
Watching television -79%
Taking care of animals- 78%
Playing board games/blocks -74%
Listening to music- 71%
Playing alone- 34%
"I LIKE IT HERE, ESPECIALLY SHARING DAY WHEN EVERYONE BRINGS A TOY. I ALSO LIKE HUGGING MY TEACHER AND PLAYING OUTSIDE."- boy aged 4.
Parents should consider sharing this information with their child care provider and taking the time to talk about the activities their child is involved in. A lack of artwork, disrupted toys, happy playing bodies may signal a lack of positive activity and may be detrimental to a child's development. Take a moment to ask, "What did Johnny do today?", or what wild and wonderful things your provider has planned for the week. This small investment in time is an investment in your child.
Child Care Aware is a cooperative public service program of Dayton Hudson Corporation, its foundation and its Target, Mervyn's, Dayton's, Hudson's and Marshall Field's stores and several prominent national child care advocacy organizations. 1-800-424-2246