They start to manipulate and manage what’s in it. This requires them to think and solve problems. The more they do this, the more successful they’ll be now and in school.
Encourage your child by helping him figure things out. Here are some ideas to try:
• Give your child reasons for why you do things. Ask him to tell you his reasons. “Why did you put that block there?” “Why did you color it red?”
• Talk about worries and fears. Perhaps your child is afraid of the dark, or he’s anxious about going to school. Ask, “What are you afraid of?” “What do you think will happen?”
• Explore possible solutions. Ask your child, “What else might you do?” What has he seen others do that might work?
• Consider consequences. Ask your child to think about, “What would happen if . . . ?” “What did you do to cause that?”
• Let your child determine “the best way.” For example, when he spills something, ask, “What’s the best way to clean this up? With a paper towel? With a mop?”
• Encourage pretend play. If your child’s pretending to be a doctor, for instance, ask lots of questions. “Is your patient sick? What are you doing to help him?”
• Ask for your child’s opinion. “What should we do with your picture? Can you think of a good place to put it?”
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