Goal 1: Children engage in a variety of physical activities
- Enthusiastically participate in different full body physical activities (walking, climbing, playing in snow, throwing, dancing, digging, bouncing, swimming).
- Incorporate various physical activities while transitioning from one place to another (marches between the kitchen and the bathroom).
- Play actively with other children.
- Spend most of the day moving and choosing activities and playmates.
- Regularly participate in physical activity (walks, dances, plays organized or informal sports).
- Help with physical chores (shoveling snow, sweeping the floor, carrying laundry, putting away toys).
- Participate in cooperative games with peers.
- Work on physical challenges such as climbing rocks, hills and trees, rolling, jumping, throwing, digging, shoveling.
- Engage child in group exercise times/activities (dance party, outdoor walks, sledding).
- Engage child in different kinds of full body physical activities (throwing balls, climbing playground equipment, helping with chores).
- Provide opportunities to play in different settings (neighborhood park with outdoor play equipment, playgroups with other children).
- Provide a variety of materials and toys, changing them as children get older and more capable.
- With close supervision, provide opportunities for exploring natural settings such as the beach, forests, tundra, creeks, rocky surfaces, garden.
- Create obstacle courses that encourage the child to use a variety of muscles for strength, balance, agility and control (jumping from pillow to pillow laid on the floor). Participate in regular physical activities with child (swimming, walking, skating, hiking, drumming, dancing, gymnastics, skiing, skating, hopscotch, jump rope, and games with balls).
- Offer opportunities for child to play song games incorporating music, movement, and other children.
- Provide opportunities and materials for child to participate in activities that require new skill development including muscle control such as skipping stones, building with blocks, or playing with Legos.
Goal 2: Children demonstrate strength and coordination of gross motor skills
- Walk and run in circular paths (around obstacles and corners).
- Crawl through a play tunnel or under tables.
- Climb on play equipment.
- Throw beanbags or large lightweight ball with progressively more accuracy.
- Catches large balls with two hands, with progressively more skill for smaller balls.
- Kick ball forward.
- Balance on one foot.
- Hop forward on one foot without losing balance.
- Jump on two feet and over small objects with balance and control.
- Gallop comfortably.
- Pedal steadily when riding tricycle.
- Walk up and down stairs, using alternating feet, with less and less assistance.
- Jump sideways.
- Run with an even gait.
- Maintain balance while bending or twisting.
- Begin to use a racquet, paddle, bat, stick or club, or balls.
- Hop with one foot at a time briefly.
- Mount and pump a swing with no assistance.
- Run with an even gait and with few falls.
- Hops on each foot separately without support.
- Maintain balance while bending, twisting, or stretching.
- Move body into position to catch a ball, then throw the ball in the right direction.
- Kick a large with some accuracy.
- Alternate weight and feet while skipping or using stairs.
- Throw a medium-size ball with some accuracy.
- Use a racquet, paddle, bat, stick or club, pucks or balls with more skill.
- Help encourage balance through rocking, swinging, rolling and spinning (and beach walking).
- Offer dance and other movement activities that use both sides of the body (bending, twisting, stretching, balancing).
- Dance, swim, ball play, and bike riding are better choices than structured team sports at this age.
- Offer physical chores (but do not expect it accomplished at adult levels of competence).
- Include child in simple, small physical chores (sweeping, feeding pets, clearing dishes from the table).
- Dress in comfortable clothes appropriate for the weather to encourage movement.
- Be inventive – create obstacle courses with household items, explore the outdoors.
- Begin teaching and leading informal sports or games with more complex rules. (soccer, basketball, tee ball, gymnastics, cheer). The emphasis should be on learning basic skills rather than competition.
Goal 3: Children demonstrate stamina and energy in daily activities
- Carry light objects, bags, or backpack for a short distance.
- Repetitively practice new skills.
- Engage in physical activities at least one hour a day, with sustained physical activity for at least 15 minutes at a time (swinging, playground equipment, running games).
- Follow along with guided movement activities, such a music and movement or child yoga/Zumba.
- Ride a trike by pedaling for extended periods of time and distance.
- Run 50 to 75 yards without stopping.
- Engage in physical activities for at least one hour throughout each day.
- Complete extended activities such as short hikes or bike rides with supportive adults.
- Initiate physical activities (movement games with other children, dancing to music).
- Pump on a swing for several minutes.
- Skip for 2 minutes.
- Jump and hop with increasing persistence.
- Provide at least 60 minutes of physical activities each day.
- Make physical activity fun (set up a simple and safe obstacle course outside or inside where child climbs over, under, and through things; incorporate movement to music).
- Offer balance between stimulating and restful activities.
- Lead activities where children follow along to dance, yoga or marching.
- Provide equipment and activities that encourage safe swinging or jumping.
- Have children help with chores, such as sweeping or carrying light groceries.
- Engage child in activities that require some physical exertion, such as “races” and throwing balls through holes in boxes.
- Encourage child to reach new physical goals (hopping on one foot repeatedly, jumping over small boxes).
- Support child to reach and exceed personal goals rather than to compete with others.
- Provide hula hoops, swings, bikes, skis, sleds and other equipment that encourages sustained activity.
- Plan activities such as hikes or bike rides,
appropriate to the skill level of the child, that require stamina.
Goal 4: Children demonstrate strength and coordination of fine motor skills
- Eat with utensils.
- Use various drawing and art materials (markers, pencils, crayons, small brushes, finger paint).
- Copy shapes and geometric designs.
- Open and closes blunt scissors with one hand.
- Cut paper on a straight line and on a curve but without precision.
- Manipulate small objects with ease (strings beads, fits small objects into holes).
- Fasten large buttons.
- Use large zippers.
- Increase strength in fingers with age, progressing to using a stapler or hole punch.
- Fit complex puzzles together (single, cut-out figures to 10-15 piece jigsaw puzzles).
- Write some recognizable letters or numbers.
- Use fine motor muscles in a variety of activities (winking, snapping fingers, clucking tongue).
- Remove and replaces easy-to-open container lids.
- Fold paper and makes paper objects (airplanes, origami), with assistance.
- Cut, draw, glue with materials provided.
- Tie knots and shoe laces, with assistance.
- Print some letters in own name.
- Button large buttons on clothing.
- Tear tape off a dispenser without letting the tape get stuck to itself, most of the time.
- Put together and pulls apart manipulatives (Legos, beads for stringing and sewing, Lincoln Logs) appropriately.
- Fit jigsaw puzzles with smaller pieces together.
- Engage child in activities that strengthen hand grasp (molding play dough, using a hand-held hole punch).
- Encourage child to use pincer grasp of thumb/forefinger (gluing small pieces of paper, peeling/sticking stickers, picking up small objects with fingers).
- Demonstrate and provides opportunities for child to use scissors safely.
- Provide many opportunities throughout the day for using small muscles (playdough, markers, scissors).
- Provide opportunities for child to practice tying, buttoning, and beading.
- Spend time with child using a variety of writing materials (crayons, pencils, markers, paints).
- Modify activities to ensure participation of children with special needs (example: attach rubber grips to pencils).
- Challenge children to wink, snap, cluck and otherwise develop small muscles.
- Involve child in activities using fine motor skills (setting a table, preparing food, and sorting buttons).
- Play card games in which child must hold, pick up, and turn over cards (” “Go Fish”).
- Play games with spinners or dice that require moving markers around the board.
- Provide daily opportunities for child to use art supplies that support fine motor skills (crayons, chalk, pencils, scissors, glue, stickers).
- Provide small materials to manipulate such as Legos, hammer and nails, beads for stringing and sewing.
- Encourage play with stacking blocks and make a variety of structures such as houses, castles, roads, etc.
- Provide supervision and activities to use small handheld tools, such as screwdrivers and hammers.
- Use yoga or other activities to promote balance and core muscle control.
Goal 5: Children use their senses of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch to guide and integrate their learning and interactions (sensorimotor skills)
- Physically react appropriately to the environment (bend knees to soften a landing, move quickly to avoid obstacles).
- Demonstrate concepts through movement (imitates an animal through movement, sounds, dress, dramatization, dance).
- Practice sensory regulation by pushing objects, climbing short ladders, swinging on a swing, and sliding.
- Move their body in response to sound, marching or dancing with rhythm.
- Explore new foods through sight, smell and touch, eventually tasting.
- Enjoy watching their own image in photo albums, videos and their motions in the mirror.
- Match pairs of colors and patterns.
- Match pairs of similar sounds.
- Correctly identify high tones and low tones on a music instrument.
- Identify a variety of smells.
- Echo back a rhythm of hand clapping or drumming.
- Be willing to touch the unknown in a “feely bag”.
- Match textures by feel such as plastic, furs, woods.
- Experiment with music instruments.
- Use materials to create mosaic patterns.
- Play word games and sings songs that use the body
- Set up an obstacle course of chairs, sticks, boxes and give directions (“Go over the box, under the chair, and beside the stick.”).
- Provide opportunities for child to explore natural surroundings.
- Expose child to a variety of different types of musical sounds, rhythms and patterns.
- Provide opportunities to experience new tastes, textures, and smells (variety of fruits and vegetables).
- Help children to use technology (mobile phone) to record sights and sounds.
- Offer play clay (cornstarch and water), non-toxic shaving cream, finger paint and playing in the sand and water.
- Consider allowing children to explore other sensory stimulation such as fish or game preparation, if acceptable in the culture.
- Allow children to participate in cooking projects, smelling, touching and tasting ingredients as feasible.
- Ensure that children at all ages are checked for vision and hearing, as suggested by doctor or early educator.
- Provide small opaque containers for matching sounds, such as pennies in two containers, sand in two, bell in two, rocks in two, nickels in two, etc. Do the same with matching smells such as
extracts. Or cotton balls soaked in vinegar, etc.
- Provide access to music instruments and plans activities with them.
- Explore food with tastes and textures from a variety of cultures.
- Lead safe and supervised opportunities for child to try a variety of simple activities with limited sensory input (using headphones, blindfold, and gloves).
- Provide opportunities for play and games with other children using sensory instructions.
- Offer access to craft materials in a variety of patterns, shapes, textures and sizes.
Goal 6: Children practice health skills and routines
- Use tissue to wipe own nose and throws tissue in wastebaskets.
- Take care of own toileting needs.
- Wash and dry hands before eating and after toileting, without assistance.
- Cooperate and assist caregiver with tooth brushing.
- Identify health products (shampoo, toothpaste, soap).
- Cover mouth when coughing.
- Recognize and communicate when experiencing symptoms of illness.
- Feed self with fork and spoon, without assistance.
- Clean up spills.
- Get a drink of water without assistance.
- Dress and undress with minimal help.
- Choose own clothes to wear, when asked.
- Put shoes on, without assistance.
- Decide, with few prompts, when to carry out self-help tasks (washing hands when dirty and before meals).
- Choose to rest when he/she is tired.
- Participate in helping younger siblings with personal care routines.
- Get own snack out of the cabinet.
- Begin to tie own shoes with assistance. Brush teeth and attempts flossing with supervision, and then allows assistance to complete process.
- Wash face, without assistance.
- Cover mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing with elbow or tissue.
- Use fork, spoon, and (sometimes) a blunt table knife.
- Pour milk or juice easily and with minimal spills.
- Dress and undresses in easy pull-on clothes, without assistance.
- Brush and comb hair, with assistance.
- Help select clothes appropriate for the weather.
- Offer plenty of guidance and opportunities for child to take care of self (put on own coat, clean up after spills and messy projects).
- Give child enough time to take care of personal needs such as zipping and unzipping coat.
- Help child recognize personal signs of fatigue and need for rest.
- Provide opportunities for child to help set the table, clean messes, put dishes away, or clean their room.
- Suggest child help younger siblings and other children with appropriate personal care routines.
- Demonstrate clear and consistent boundaries about harmful objects and situations (always put child in car seat as needed).
- Permit child to brush own teeth; caregiver brushes after child
- Talk with children about why personal hygiene is important.
- Demonstrate hygiene and health practices yourself.
- Encourage children to brush their own teeth, while adults finish to ensure proper brushing.
- Show child difference between candy and pills, food and non-food items, addressing drug-abuse concerns.
- Provide opportunities for child to select their own toothbrush, brush, and other items when possible.
- Place a visual checklist in the child’s grooming area.
- Introduce child to health care workers (dentist, nurse, health aide, doctor).
- Talk with child about positive personal care routines.
- Provide opportunities for child to take responsibility for own special personal care (eyeglasses, hearing aids).
- Encourage child to model care routines with dolls or other toys.
Goal 7: Children eat a variety of nutritious foods
- Participate in preparing nutritious snacks and meals.
- Choose to eat foods that are healthy for the body, with assistance.
- Pass food at the table and take appropriate sized portions, or other culturally-specific family serving style.
- Be able to explain the primary function of certain foods (milk helps build strong bones).
- Recognize foods from different food groups, with assistance.
- Provide simple explanations for own and others’ food allergies.
- Engage child in shopping for nutritious food (have child help pick out fruit or pick berries).
- Talk with child about food choices in relation to allergies, religion, culture, family choices, and overall health.
- Avoid soda pop and processed food.
- Feed child small amounts frequently rather than large amounts three times a day.
- Involve child in planting, growing, and harvesting a vegetable garden.
- Involve child in family and community subsistence activities (gathering plants and berries, fishing, hunting).
- Provide opportunities for child to help set the table at mealtimes.
- Show children how to wash fruits and veggies.
- Serve healthy foods and allows each child to select their portion.
- Treat mealtime as a sociable, happy time.
- Engage child in the preparation, serving, and eating of nutritious foods.
- Talk with child about why certain foods are more nutritious than others (fruit is more nutritious than candy).
- Keep nutritious food at home.
- Provide small family-style dining rather than eating on their own or serving them like a cafeteria setting.
- Model healthy eating habits yourself, and trying small bites of new foods.
- Identify wild edible plants or berries with child.
- Offer tasting of new foods, compare different types of apples.
- Ask the child to help set the table.
- Respect children’s food preferences and offer choices.
Routines and Transitions
Routines help reduce stress for both adults and children. By planning and thinking ahead about the daily transitions such as eating, sleeping, and playtime, adults can feel more organized, and help children change from one activity to the next. When children know what to expect, they feel more safe and secure and tend to be calmer. Routines are as simple as reading a book before nap and bedtimes, or singing a special song while washing hands before eating. As preschoolers start learning about time, setting a timer, and giving a five minute countdown before the next activity can help.
Goal 8: Children are kept safe and learn safety rules
- Tell peers and adults when they see dangerous behaviors (throwing rocks on the playground).
- Use and ask to use helmets when riding on movable toys.
- Carry scissors and pencils with points down to avoid accidents.
- Begin to look both ways before crossing street or road, and know to cross with adult assistance.
- Recognize danger and poison symbols and avoid those objects or areas.
- Know to not touch or take medicine without adult assistance, but knows that medicine can improve health when used properly.
- Understand the difference between “safe touch” and “unsafe touch”.
- Follow emergency drill instruction (fire, earthquake, tsunami).
- Begin to try to help getting buckled into car seat.
- Know not to accept rides, food, or money from strangers.
- Know to not talk with strangers unless trusted adult is present and gives permission.
- Understand that some practices may be personally dangerous (smoking, drinking alcohol, playing with matches, contact with germs and blood).
- Identify local hazards (thin ice, wildlife, dogs, moving water, guns).
- Identify adults who can assist in dangerous situations (parent, teacher, police officer).
- Consistently follow safety rules.
- Understand why emergency drills are important.
- Explain how to get help in emergency situations (calling 911, finding a police officer or responsible adult, local emergency response).
- Demonstrate safety rules as engages in dramatic play (“Tell your doll to keep his/her fingers away from the hot stove.”).
- Invite firefighters and police officers to talk to child about fire and safety precautions.
- Read stories to children in which children face harmful situations and discusses how they deal with them (research books for teaching children safety).
- Discuss safety rules with child (holding hands in crowds, around small aircraft, wearing a personal flotation device, wearing a bike helmet).
- Practice appropriate emergency drills (fire, earthquake, and tsunami).
- Model using basic safety equipment yourself.
- Participate with child in community health and safety programs (local and tribal clinics, dentist, doctor, veterinarian, firefighter,
- Discuss safety practice with child (crossing streets, medicine is not candy, guns are for adults, avoiding strange dogs and wild
- Learn about current approaches to personal safety (checks resources from Department of Education or Center for Disease Control).
- Take neighborhood walks with child, look for and discuss potentially dangerous situations.