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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Raise Your Play I.Q. — Constructivist Intentions: Hands-On & Open-Ended


Young learners are infatuated with the world around them. Through direct experiences of visual, auditory, tactile, olfactory and gustatory perception (taste), young children experiment and learn. While DuPage Children’s Museum (DCM) encourages all of these experiences, due to safety and other concerns in the public place, we can’t provide them all! But you can at home! It is important to consider and encourage a sensory experience that will help children draw conclusions about the world around them. In essence, the opportunity for learning across all ages increases when experiences engage multiple senses.

DCM is committed to exhibit and program planning that encourages multisensory exploration and leads to experiences that can result in many right answers. Through open-ended experiences, learners are encouraged to look at any concept through a lens that does not focus on one right or one wrong answer. These kinds of experiences allow young ones to direct learning in their own way, in their own time and at their own pace—creating a lesson that is incredibly rewarding and memorable. Children can internalize these experiences, which will allow them to return to the learned concepts and build on them later.

At DCM, we want learning to be involved in all experiences. With learning in mind, as well as a focus that is open-ended and hands-on, children can be encouraged to think critically, problem solve, gain competency through trial and error and much more!


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Mollie H.M. Willis
Mollie H.M. Willishttp://www.dupagechildrensmuseum.org
Raise Your Play IQ™ is written by Mollie H.M. Willis, M.S. Curriculum & Instruction, an early learning consultant to Dupage Children's Museum. Ms. Willis has more than ten years of experience in early learning including preschool administration and teaching. She can be reached through the museum at admin@dupagechildrensmuseum.org.