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The importance of free development for babies

2021-11-22 00:00:00

Written by Marloes Dingemans

At CompaNanny we find freedom of movement very important. Space to develop through movement leads to independence and self-confidence in babies and young children. At our baby groups we use the vision of Emmi Pikler. What this vision means and how it translates into our pedagogical approach at the baby groups, we'd like to tell you in this blog!

What is Emmi Pikler's vision?

Emmi Pikler developed her vision from her role as a mother and pediatrician. When a child has the opportunity to discover and learn at his or her own pace, he or she learns to sit, stand, speak and think better than a child who is helped in his or her development. Pikler's vision is therefore an important source of inspiration for CompaNanny's pedagogical method.

How is the vision of Emmi Pikler applied in our pedagogical method?

In the spacious ground box the smallest babies can play undisturbed, safe and quietly. They get enough room to move around in order to master all of the developmental phases at their own pace. A child is always laid on his or her back. We do this on a hard mat in the ground box. This hard surface provides support for movement. When the child is laid on his or her back, he or she can move from that position (for example by rolling over on their side). The child can practice rolling over and, at a later stage, can practice tugging.

Extra stimulation of movement in the playpen
To further stimulate movement, toys are placed in a semi-circle around the child. Our Nannies will not put toys in the hands of children; in this way they give children the opportunity to choose for themselves what they will take, when they have mastered the motor skills. Each child will be assessed when he or she is ready to play outside of the floor box. The Nannies will then look at what the child can already do and whether he or she feels comfortable in a larger space.

Passive toys ensure an active and creative child
The baby groups at CompaNanny are well laid out and spacious with quiet colors and objects. Besides the spacious floor boxes where babies can move around in, there are various climbing and clambering equipment and lots of wooden objects. Everything is present to allow creativity and development to run its course and to give the child the space and above all the peace to grow and learn. There are no toys in our groups with buttons that make sounds, but only passive toys that make children curious, active and creative.

Stimulating independent development

At CompaNanny we follow the development of the individual child. For example, if a child has not yet gotten into a sitting position independently, we choose not to put them in the high chair at the table to eat yet. We then offer the snack or bread on the Nanny's lap. Before a child can sit at the table, we find it important that a child has first come to the sitting position by himself. When a child has done this entirely from his or her own motivation and strength, it provides an enormous boost in self-confidence. From this success experience the child will be able to develop further with even more self-confidence.

Would you like to know more about our pedagogical vision or are you curious about the method we use in our toddler groups? Check out our page on the pedagogical policy of CompaNanny. Are you enthusiastic about our childcare offer? You can request a tour at one of our locations or register your child directly!