5 reasons why Mud Play is great for children’s development
Allowing children to play with mud is more common now in early year’s settings. Previously many people were reluctant to let children play in mud, however people views have changed over time. Mud play is now recognised as a source of learning as there are vast learning opportunities during mud play. Many early years settings have a mud kitchen which is great for allowing children to explore mud play further whilst developing their imagination skills. Mud kitchens can be as basic as settings want them to be consisting of just bowls and spoons, however, this can always be extended further by either buying a readymade wooden mud kitchen or getting someone to make you one that incorporates shelves, worktops and compartments for children to put their saucepans in.
Children can have so much fun playing with mud. They can develop their creativity and whilst playing pretend play with their peers. To children mud play is another resource that they can use to help them learn new skills.
5 Reasons, why Mud play, should be encouraged in early years settings
Developing children’s sensory skills
As children touch the mud and squelch it through their finger whether this is wet or dry mud this can develop their sensory skills. As we know sensory play is crucial in helping brain development as it connects the nerves together which in turn helps learning.
Connecting with Nature
Exploring mud can help bring children closer to nature, it is a way of removing children from playing on electronic toys. Mud play is a fun resource where children can get real hands on learning opportunities, it can help them learn some important life skills. They will learn about new plants and animals as they digging away in the mud.
Learning science concepts
As children are happily exploring the texture and consistency of the mud they will be experimenting what happens when they add water or further dirt to their bowl. As children observe what happens when making mud they are learning about how things work which is a science concept. Children will begin to develop their own ideas and use their problem-solving skills to help achieve their goal.
Building on imagination skills
Mud play stimulates children’s imagination as they are thinking of new ideas and role play scenarios. Children will use role play as a way of also developing their social and emotional understanding. As children are digging in the mud filling up their saucepans they will be reflecting on their own play and talking about what they are doing. This in turn will help develop their imagination skills.
Developing children’s language and communication skills
As children are communicating with their peers they are building on and developing vital skills.During mud play children will share ideas and exchange conversations between one another. It is also an opportunity for adults to ask open-ended questions giving children the opportunity to respond with lengthy answers.