The main mission of every parent is to love its child unconditionally, but that is easy. What is a bit more difficult, but almost equally as important is to help the child reach its full potential. Yes, that means knowing when to hold your son/daughter’s hand and knowing when to let go, but also creating a friendly environment for growing up and getting to know the world. For children, their room is their own piece of the world, and it should not be a surprise that the room itself has a great impact on their development. That room should be both classroom and playroom, because children learn and research through play. Here is how to join the world of learning and play into a single room, to stimulate children’s mental growth.
Use Colors to Teach Focus
Developing the skills of focus is crucial, not only for academic success, but also for the choice of career and general direction of life. In this age of distractions (TVs, computers, tablets, smartphones…) starting early on with training the focus is even more crucial. In early stage of life, the colors in the room can significantly impact the child’s ability to direct its attention to something. Make sure you paint the walls with contrasting colors, and use high-contrasting objects for furniture and accessories (round vs. square, etc.). Also, you can use wallpapers, to contrast colors with patterns. Steer away from strong contrasts (black and white), though.
Introduce Different Textures
It is a 3D world out there and a child should get to know and feel its shapes and textures. Textured pieces around the room will provide visual stimulation from the early age and they will become objects for exploration later on. Use bedding, window treatments, shaggy rugs, etc. to provoke interest in a child to touch and discover. Children learn through all the five senses and a well designed room should stimulate each and every one of them.
Playing is Learning
One of the greatest geniuses ever, Einstein, said that play is the highest form of research, and we cannot argue with that. Equip your child’s room with educational toys according to its age and abilities, and make sure that those toys are challenging, fun and accessible. Encourage specific learning areas, like language, science, math, etc. When your child is old enough, try searching for toys together and be supportive and encouraging about its choices. For example, if you have a son with special interest for superheroes or some other area browse through online store to find something he likes and support his aspirations.
Include Different Play Units
Children play in different ways, and they cannot always have fun with dolls, cars or legos. Design a room with three different play units, where one of them will be the relaxing simple play unit, when a child needs some good old fun, like a swing or trampoline. The second one should be a bit more complex, where a child is allowed to use its creativity to improvise and find its own path to fun and learning. It can be a corner with different sized cubes, kitchen plastic bowls, etc. The third unit should be even more complex and challenge child’s mind into exploring and coming up with ideas. It can be anything from a paper and pencil to a dough table with tools.
Add an Art Area
Art plays a major role in children’s emotional, social and cognitive development. Exposing the children to art can help develop creative thinking, the abilities of analyzing, describing and explaining, the proneness to express feelings and thoughts, the possibility of multiple points of view and confidence, essential for later progress. All these benefits imply that every child should have an “art nook” in its room. To design such as space, you will have to visually separate it from the rest of the world (with furniture, chalkboard lines, etc.) and make art supplies like pens, paper, crayons, etc. available. Stimulate your child to continue with its work by exposing those artworks on the walls of the nook and praising its skills. Also, you can place a bookshelf in that corner and read books to your child together to develop a healthy reading habit that can last for a lifetime.
Clearly Organized Space
If you do not want for your kid’s room to become an anarchistic space stimulating chaotic thoughts in your child’s head, than you should organize the room and divide it into different areas which will help the kid to learn early on about responsibilities and organization. Make it a fun puzzle game: a book goes into the art corner, a toy into one of the playing areas, clothes in the wardrobe, etc. That way you can teach your child to think logically and use its memory to find an appropriate place for every piece of the puzzle.
A properly stimulated child’s mind is nurtured and grown to become big and smart and to seek harder challenges. The mental development of a child starts the moment it leaves the womb, so be ready include some of these elements into the first nursery room too.