Inspired by the 30×30 Dubai Fitness Challenge launched by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, Ladybird Nursery innovates its Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum by adopting physical development activities that positively impact cognitive development and decrease anxiety in young children. Engaging in fitness activities is proven to enhance focus and improve sleep and energy levels in early learners.
Ladybird Nursery implements the Montessori approach to its EYFS curriculum, ensuring its young students are introduced to real-world learning outcomes from a young age, effectively invoking a structured routine for physical development for the curious young minds using ‘Practical Life’ exercises.
Supporting parents to create a structured routine at home, Ladybird Nursery shares appropriate daily exercise time and activities that are easy to implement. Parents are encouraged to keep their babies – between the age of six months to one year – active throughout the day, encouraging supervised floor-based activities with a baby gym mat and 30 minutes of tummy time. Children between the ages of one and four years are encouraged to spend approximately three hours exercising per day.
Dance is a great way to grab early learners’ attention
As the summer heat settles in, bathtub water-play or taking children to indoor swimming pools is a viable option. Dance is a great way to grab early learners’ attention and songs such as ‘Baby Shark’ or ‘Freeze’ will pique their interest. Invoking their inner Lionel Messi by kicking a ball or playing catch supports motor development.
Collaborative family-fun activities include online workout sessions or online yoga videos, which parents can participate in as well, such as the Joe Wicks workout or Cosmic Kids Yoga videos. Invoke your child’s inner builder or master chef through building blocks and Playdough for modelling and cooking at home – teaching them important life skills such as weighing, pouring and mixing.
Monica Valrani, Montessori Directress and CEO of Ladybird Nursery says: “Just 30 minutes of exercise daily has an immensely positive impact on children’s cognitive and motor skill development. The challenge arises in exciting early learners and creating the curiosity to live a healthy lifestyle. These values need to be instilled from a young age. At Ladybird Nursery, we have adopted a unique approach by tailoring children’s interest to collaborative play activities and structuring a healthy routine.”
“Just 30 minutes of exercise daily has an immensely positive impact on children’s cognitive and motor skill development”
The bespoke EYFS curriculum offers the ‘Kidz Fit’ programme that involves ball skills, aerobics, parachute games and hula-hoop activities. These fun physical events encourage and empower children to care for themselves and become independent self-carers.
The ball skills activities include a multitude of fun courses that stimulate children’s creativity and fine motor skills, including throwing and catching, bucket races, kicking balls to knock down pins, mini-golf, and more. Ladybird Nursery’s aerobics exercises have proven to offer children a better chance to grow up as healthy adults with less risk of chronic diseases. The early learners follow a healthy regimen of jumping jacks, squats, boxing in the air, run-around between cones, and the world-famous, ‘Simon Says’(hop, jump, touch toes) game.
Parachute games develop the early learners’ collaborative skills and teach them the importance of teamwork and cooperation while increasing their strength, agility, coordination and endurance at the same time. Hula-hoop activities reduce their anxiety levels by strengthening muscles and improving coordination skills, enabling children to reduce their stress levels through a fun musical game of jumping in and out of the hula-hoop.
Parachute games develop the early learners’ collaborative skills and teach them the importance of teamwork and cooperation
In addition, Ladybird Nursery also offers a customised Splash Pad where children can move freely and explore water-play through physical and sensory experiences such as a planting garden, mud kitchen, sand play area and customised bicycle track for the little ones.
Its two Dubai-based campuses – in Jumeirah and Jumeirah Village Triangle – provide a theme-based summer camp inspired by their early learners. The programme is customised to include arts and crafts, storytime, music and movement, languages, and various areas of play. The seasonal camps will also be available in the soon-to-open Ladybird Nursery in Al Barsha – set to open its doors to its first cohort of little learners for the start of the 2022-2023 academic year in August.