Physical Activity In Early Childhood
Physical activity is important for the healthy growth and development of all children. This essay will be focusing on the importance of physical activity on the early childhood aged children, ranging from the ages of two up until the age of six. Discussing factors such as why physical activity is important for children, what role a teacher plays in addressing and preventing childhood obesity and will also outline four ways that teachers can assist in preventing obesity. Children in this age group require a vast amount of physical activity daily, with professionals recommending the minimum daily requirement of sixty minutes. ‘The minimum daily requirement does not mean that sixty minutes is the limit’. (Active kids are healthy kids. Australia’s Physical Activity Recommendations For 5-12 Year Olds, (2006), p 1). This is the minimum requirement that young children should exercise for, children can exercise for hours on end without doing any harm to themselves. Young children enjoy being active and exploring new things. Instead of discouraging them from exploring, playing and getting dirty, encourage them to remain physically active. Physical activity is important for children in the early childhood group and has many physical underlying benefits. Some of these benefits are that it allows the children to develop their movement skills from gross motor skills to fine motor skills. ‘These skills include running, hopping, skipping and climbing. Physical activity also helps to build strong bones and muscles. It also aids in improving a child’s balancing skills whilst improving their flexibility levels’ ( McDevitt and Ormond, 2010, p. 161). By encouraging and getting children to participate in regular physical activity it enables children to relax and can increase the child’s overall concentration levels. But one of the most important factors is that it physical activity provides the opportunity for children to make more friends,...
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