A question recently came up about when children should learn/know their body parts. It’s hard to answer questions like this because each child has his own timeline and interests and so we should follow the child.
That said, we can create environment that encourages the child to unconsciously absorb this information.
Some ways we can do that are to:
1. Point out and talk about body parts from birth. Diaper changes, bath and dress up times provide opportunities to naturally talk about them. I wrote about this here
2. Create an environment that encourages body awareness. One of the best way to do this is to have mirrors at the child’s level around the house and encourage independence or at least collaboration in bathing and dressing up as soon as possible
3. Sing songs and rhymes about body parts such as “head, shoulders, knees and toes” and a favorite around here, “put your finger on” are fun, and they include movement with appeals to the child
4. Books are another way and for us were a huge impact. I have written a separate post specifically for books on this subject. See books post here
5. Puzzles and activities: as the child gets older, you can provide puzzles or other activities that introduce even more parts.
I recently made solu this felt puzzle. I got the idea from ittybittylove.
He enjoyed it a lot and also learned eye brows, eye balls, eye lashes, nostrils, forehead and lips as a result. Before that he just knew the basic parts of the face. He now knows they each have several parts… Laying the foundation for biology!
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6. Bonus tip: A doll or a new sibling (:p) also provides many opportunities to talk and learn about body parts.
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