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mariannebotting

Surrey, UK

Hello, I'm Marianne. Welcome to my blog!

The First Five Years

Did you know that the experiences children have in the first five years of their life help shape the adults they will become? More than anything else, the relationship you have with with your child shapes the way she learns and grows.

In the first five years of life, a child's brain is developing at a faster pace than at any other time of life. During this time, the experiences your child has help their brain to create millions of connections. This is when the foundations for their learning, health and behaviour throughout life are laid down.

I am a qualified teacher, with experience of teaching 2-5 year-olds. This age-group is (quite rightly!) referred to as The Foundation Stage or The Early Years in the UK. All children (and - perhaps - all adults?) learn best through Play.
That is why this blog focuses purely on play - sharing ideas for play, how to provide a wide range of opportunities for play that stimulate and excite, and how to support and extend your child's learning through play.

Games

There is a vast amount of research to show that children learn best through free, unstructured play, with the support, guidance and input from an adult. I also believe in the power of a GAME for learning pretty much anything. Whatever we are into, we try to come up with a game around it.

Being A Parent

I became a mummy not long ago too (to two boys, born October 2012 and October 2014) and this has really opened my eyes to all the learning that goes on before children reach school. As parents, we really are our children's first educators.

But educating a child at home is very different from doing it in a classroom. As a teacher, I had hours to plan play experiences. But being a parent means I now have about an hour a day to myself (sound familiar?!). So, over the last year or so, I have been learning how to fit all this wonderful play into a busy day, without going completely nuts.

Teacher Tips and Tricks

I am on a mission to share my tips and tricks for creating valuable play opportunities for your children, quickly, easily and without having to buy lots of expensive toys.

Advice On Toys

I also share advice on getting the most out of the toys and resources you have at home. The way you interact with your child when playing with their toys is key to unlocking their learning potential.

Pinterest

As well as this, I am here to save you valuable time by finding all the best educational and play ideas for babies, toddlers and under fives on the web. I try to source ideas that are creative and inspiring, but easily and cheaply set up in a busy household on a budget. Check out my Pinterest boards when you fancy a bit of inspiration!

Creativity

And last, but not least, I am a believer in the power of creative thinking. And creativity is catching - so the best way to nurture our creativity (and our children's) is for us all to share ideas! So I am always looking both to inspire and to be inspired, and I welcome any comments, links or photos from you that revolve around play and learning at home or school.

I am so glad you've stopped by to join me, and hope you find what you're looking for. If you have a question, please feel free to comment below, or pop over to my Facebook page and message me there.

Marianne x

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