Preschool and kindergarten children aren't too young to learn about decisions and consequences. Every day, they already make choices like the shoes they want to wear, the cereal they wish to eat, and the children they like to play with. These decisions may not seem to be major, but as they grow older, the things they do will have a bigger influence on their future choices. To ingrain such an important lesson in their young minds, try these games:
- Role-playing -- Preschool children like to pretend they're princes and princesses, superheroes and villains, wizards and fairies, astronauts and doctors. Make use of their imaginative minds by creating an interactive verbal story and different directions for it depending on the decisions they make. Prepare the story lines on index cards to keep you on track. Think of it as a create-your-own-adventure tale, but instead of reading it, you're all acting it out.
- Gift-grabbing -- Children need to learn about risks as well, and this game will help them with that. Gather lunch bags and put a small trinket in each one; make sure the number of bags is one greater than the number of children in the class. Leave an untouched bag on the table. Then distribute the rest of the lot to the children. Don't ask them to open it; instead, tell them to feel what's inside then decide if they will keep the it, trade it with another classmate, or get the extra bag. After all the trading, ask them to open their bags and see what's in them, then talk about what they think they should or should not have done to get what they wanted.
- Outdoor team games -- Classic games for children like hide-and-seek can help preschoolers learn how to make decisions as part of a team. They'll realize that in a group, their choices count as much as others', and that compromise is important when members have differing opinions. They'll also develop strategic thinking when they come up with tactics on how to win. But more importantly, you can also use this opportunity to teach them about being humble winners and gracious losers.
At Day Star Montessori, we encourage decision-making games to help our preschoolers become smart not just in intellectually, but socially and emotionally as well. Take a tour of our reputable preschool in Milpitas, CA to see if we're the right fit for your children.