Kith and Kin Play and Learn Groups are informal neighborhood gatherings for children birth through five years of age who are not enrolled in full-time regulated childcare. The groups offer developmentally-and age-appropriate activities for the children. Some of the activities include block play, drawing and painting, play-doh, puzzles, games, music, singing, and more. The Play and Learn activity centers are flexible and in an environment where the child’s natural desire to learn is stimulated through meaningful, appropriate, and playful learning experiences, and one that meets the needs of each child as an individual.
The Play and Learn Groups facilitate the optimum social, emotional, intellectual, and physical development of each child by being aware of the various stages of development and by providing appropriate learning experiences.
Play is recognized as the natural vehicle by which a child learns. It is through play that the child exercises curiosity and imagination, learns to concentrate, tries new ideas, and practices grown-up behavior. The value of play cannot be overstated. Play creates opportunities for children to make choices, enhance their self-esteem, encourage their independence and develop a sense of responsibility for his or her own actions.
While the K&K groups have many goals, one is to help children learn to socialize with other children in their same age range prior to entering kindergarten.
During the groups, the coordinator will also conduct informal observations of children to assist caregivers in recognizing any delays or developmental concerns and to help with referrals. The Facilitator makes herself available for one-on-one discussions of any needs or issues, depending on individual circumstances.
The Play and Learn Groups provide educational resources for caregivers [the adults who care for the child(ren)].