At Crystals Childcare and Preschool, we recognize the immense benefits of regular physical activity for young children’s growth and development. As an educational facility dedicated to nurturing children’s natural curiosity in a safe, caring environment, we make age-appropriate physical activities an integral part of our preschool and before/after-school programs.

Research shows that physical activity supports the healthy development of motor skills, cognition, psychosocial health, and cardiometabolic health in early childhood. The habits and attitudes towards activity developed in these formative years also set the foundation for an active lifestyle later in life. Our goal at Crystals Childcare and Preschool is to provide plenty of opportunities each day for gross motor activities that get kids up and moving to promote fitness and well-being alongside academic learning.

Benefits of Physical Activity for Preschoolers

The early childhood years, specifically ages 3-5, are a critical period of rapid growth and development of fundamental movement abilities. Regular physical play builds balance, stability, coordination, muscle strength, and aerobic capacity. General benefits include:

Developing gross motor skills: Activities like running, jumping, and catching build foundational physical competence

Supporting healthy weight: Active play helps regulate calorie balance and prevents obesity in childhood

  • Building strong bones and muscles: The stimulus of exercise strengthens the growing musculoskeletal system
  • Enhancing heart and lung fitness: Aerobic activities improve stamina, endurance and resilience
  • Regulating mood and relieving stress: Releasing feel-good hormones that boost mental health

Beyond the physiological perks, active play also hones cognitive, social, and emotional skills key to school readiness:

– Improving attention span and memory retention
– Stimulating creativity, curiosity and imagination
– Teaching turn-taking, sharing, cooperation and responsibility
– Building confidence, motivation, and self-esteem

Implementing Physical Activities at Crystals Childcare and Preschool

At Crystals Childcare and Preschool, we recognize the multidimensional benefits of physical activity for early learners. Our facility layout, daily schedules, and staff training ensure regular movement breaks and active programming both indoors and outdoors.

Our center features a large playground and a spacious indoor activity room stocked with mats, cones, hula hoops, and other play equipment. Weather permitting, teachers conduct 30-45 minutes of outdoor recess on the colorful play structure. Children also enjoy nature walks around the adjoining green spaces to channel restless energy.

Indoor movement sessions promote gross motor skills through games, dance, yoga, and age-appropriate sports. Activities develop balance, flexibility, coordination, strength, and body awareness in a structured yet playful way. Examples include animal walks, freeze dance, ball games, bean bag toss, and parachute play.

Teachers incorporate physical elements into classroom learning by having kids act out stories, solve movement challenges, or transition between stations using silly walks. Our curriculum also uses academic concepts like shapes, numbers, and colors as inspiration for kinesthetic games.

We further supplement the structured activities with free play intervals where children can express themselves through self-directed movement. Multiple centers feature multisensory equipment like swings, slides, balance beams, stepping stones, and riding toys to refine motor competence.

Outdoor playground time and dedicated movement sessions total 90-120 minutes of heart-pumping activity daily. However, children practice movement skills throughout the day – whether stirring imaginary cake batter, building block towers, or putting on their jackets to go home.

Guidelines for Physical Activity in Preschool

Global guidelines recommend toddlers and preschoolers should be active throughout the day for growth and development. Specific recommendations per the WHO, CDC, and American Academy of Pediatrics state:

1-5 year olds should accumulate at least 180 minutes of physical activity daily, with 60 minutes dedicated to structured active play

  • Activities should range from light intensity like standing games to vigorous intensity like running and jumping
  • Both indoor and outdoor play help develop movement skills and fitness
  • Activity should be age-appropriate, creative, fun, and integrated into programs

Our center aligns its programming with these guidelines from leading health authorities. We believe active learning forms healthy habits that potentially last beyond the early years.

Training Our Team

At Crystals Childcare and Preschool, we hire teachers and assistants who appreciate the developmental necessity of physical activity. Our rigorous training program complements early childhood curriculum modules with the latest on movement-based learning.

Through workshops, online courses, and in-house mentoring, we teach our team strategies like:

– Planning a balance of structured play and free play
– Incorporating physical games and transitions between academic activities
– Making modifications to include children of all abilities
– Using verbal cues and visual demonstrations to teach new skills
– Building outdoor obstacle courses to develop risk-taking in a safe environment
– Identifying signs of fatigue and transitioning them to another activity
– Motivating kids with music, storytelling, and positive reinforcement.

We believe a varied combination of child-directed exploration and teacher-facilitated activities works best. Our trainers evaluate new hires on their ability to make learning active, inclusive, and engaging. We also invest in continual professional education to improve their physical literacy instruction.

The enthusiasm of our trained teachers encourages children to participate while having fun with classmates. Over time, we build their confidence and competence to truly embrace movement.

Outcomes of Early Physical Literacy

Instilling healthy physical activity habits through our program has both immediate and long-lasting effects on participating children.

In the short term, energetic play allows kids to channel their restlessness, socialize with peers, and reinforce learning through motor memory. Instead of passive screen time, active play tones their growing bodies while giving their brains a break.

The long-term outcome is raising a generation of children equipped with physical literacy to thrive across home, school, and recreational settings. Building fundamental movement skills, strength, speed, coordination, and endurance pays dividends across their lifespan.

Beyond physical gains, participating kids also demonstrate positive social, emotional, and cognitive development. Parents report their children having better focus in class, improved confidence on the field, and meaningful connections with classmates.

Ultimately, we hope to inspire a genuine love for active play that combats sedentary trends. Encouraging children to “move their way” every day sows the seeds for reduced risk of chronic disease alongside having the energy to learn and enjoy childhood.

The Crystals Childcare and Preschool Difference

Plenty of research confirms that preschoolers need active play for proper growth, especially between ages 3-5 years when their bodies and brains develop rapidly. Unfortunately, public health data reveals kids are falling short of the recommended physical activity levels. Common barriers like safety concerns, liability issues, academic pressure, and screen addiction curtail childhood movement.

At Crystals Childcare and Preschool, we break down these barriers with thoughtful policies, smart investments, and enthusiastic role models guiding kids to be active. As child health advocates, we integrate physical literacy across all services instead of just pegging it to recess or gym class.

From our playground layout to staff capacity-building to classroom configurations, we optimize every square foot to encourage child-directed movement. Activity and academic goals intertwine through our specialized early learning curriculum guided by experienced teachers.

Our center atmosphere celebrates the science confirming movement’s impact on preschool development while also respecting each toddler and child’s natural desire to explore space through their growing bodies. We find kids engage better with teachers and peers when we allow their kinetic intelligence to flourish safely alongside structured pre-academics.

Ultimately at Crystals, you get the unique combination of:

  • State-of-the-art indoor and outdoor facilities tailored to develop gross motor skills
  • A dedicated team of degreed teachers continually trained on physical literacy
  • A well-rounded curriculum fusing active games with scaffolded instruction
  • An inclusive environment welcoming children of all abilities to play freely
  • Extended hours and flexible enrollment suiting families’ scheduling needs
  • Reasonable fees despite the premium facilities and specialized programming

Give your child the early childhood foundation they deserve with Crystals Childcare and Preschool – register today for a tour! Our unique focus on physical competence alongside social and cognitive growth sets up little learners for healthier, happier lives. Contact us at  (432) 687-5904 or to learn more about early movement-based learning