In this counseling answer:
“To help your son recognize study time or play time, set up an easy schedule and stick to it. Morning is a good time to work on a concept that requires more attention to detail. After breakfast you could help him work on the alphabet or numbers for about 15 minutes. Then he could be free to play until you go out for a walk or on an errand. Do not forget to add Prayer time and time for reading Qur’an into the schedule. Make this a daily routine and soon your son will stick to it easily.”
As-salamu `alaykum dear sister.
Thank you for your question regarding how to teach your son in a playful and happy way. As parents, we always look for ways to guide our children in the proper manner.
During the preschool or early learning years, the best ways for children to learn are through example and play.
At four, your son should be able to follow one-step or two-step instructions such as first put the blocks away and then the crayons. Show him exactly what you mean. If you want them put neatly in a container in his room or a closet, help him do it for a couple of days. Then you should sit with him and explain that this is his responsibility. If he does it, then he will be rewarded with a sticker, extra playtime, or any other thing that he values. If he does not, then for a day or two he will not be allowed to play with the item he left out.
To help him develop leadership skills, you have to give him plenty of opportunities to contribute to decisions. Start with something like, “Would you like to wear a blue or green sweater today?” Eventually, let him pick out his own clothes. Praise him for his contributions. Even if something does not work out 100 percent, point out what went wrong and ask what he could do different next time. Your son will still need to be reminded of his jobs for a while.
By the end of one month, he should being completing the current task by himself. Remind him that Allah has given us all tasks and responsibilities on this earth. You can talk about one with him and then see what he comes up with. Even at four, ethics lessons are extremely important.
To help your son recognize study time or play time, set up an easy schedule and stick to it. Morning is a good time to work on a concept that requires more attention to detail. After breakfast you could help him work on the alphabet or numbers for about 15 minutes. Then he could be free to play until you go out for a walk or on an errand. Do not forget to add Prayer time and time for reading Qur’an into the schedule. Make this a daily routine and soon your son will stick to it easily.
Most preschool learning is done through play. If you want him to “work” on numbers, set up fun activities such as a ball toss. Using an empty laundry basket, have him toss plastic balls into the basket. Give him a number and have him get that many balls from the bag to toss. If they are different colors, even better. Get three red balls and two blue. Now how many balls do you have to toss? How many went in the basket? What color are they? When he has had enough of this, have him draw and color a picture of your wonderful game to hang on the fridge or give to Grandma. Again, do not expect him to be interested in any activity for more than 15 minutes. That is about all he can handle at his age.
Encourage him to use logical thinking in ways that he will not recognize as work. There are many simple games that will help him develop the qualities that you are looking for. There are many wonderful Web sites with pre-school activities on them.
Enjoy these years with your son. they are full of learning and growing for Mom and child. Allow the child in you to play and let the learning happen on its own.
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