Heuristic and Sensory Play

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Dolphin Day Nursery actively encourages the use of different heuristic and sensory areas throughout the nursery. It is important for children to perceive accurate stimuli in the environment using sensory areas.It is the basis of academic, communicative and social functioning.

Within the nursery we have a sensory room where groups of children can spend time in a calm, soothing environment to develop their own awareness of senses at the same time as increasing their imagination.

Within the setting sensory baskets, boxes and resources are used as part of heuristic play. (Heuristic play describes the activity of babies & children as they play with and explore the properties of 'objects' and was a term coined by a child psychologist Elinor Goldschmeid in the early 1980's.) They are familiar objects which can be explored for shape, texture and sound.

Using different sensory items, children can be helped to develop their language and communication skills. Treasure baskets and other heuristic play can give the freedom for children to explore different textures of real everyday objects. It helps young babies to select, touch and feel, creating a rich learning experience from everyday items through sensory motor development.

Babies can use heuristic play to naturally explore using their mouths (usually from 6 months through to 18 months) with play enhanced by adult engagement.

Within the Starfish room we also have a lilac, a shiny area and a red, black and white, to aid with developing the children’s senses.It helps with cognitive development, personal, social, emotional development, and communication.

Sensory experiences are available across the nursery for all ages and reasons and are an excellent experience for children.

A number of different Treasure Baskets are available at the nursery and these are rotated to give a stimulating resource for the children.