Songs, rhymes, finger plays, stories, and other learning activities are a key component of high-quality childcare and learning programs. The challenge is finding hands-on activities that are appropriate for infants, toddlers, and preschool-age children. The eXtension Alliance for Better Child Care Community of Practice (CoP) made sharing activities with child care providers a priority, and is adding an assortment of activities online through Moodle’s database feature on campus.extension.org.
The child care CoP uses Moodle databases to house two libraries of activities for child care providers. The databases are linked from extension.org.
•Finger plays and Songs for Child Care is a set of songs, rhymes, poems, and finger play activities that can be used to encourage language and motor skills.
•Story Stretching Ideas for Child Care is a collection of story-stretching activities that expand on themes in popular children’s books with simple activities that teach key skills in math and science, reading readiness, music and movement, and many other areas.
Visitors can browse activities to see what catches their eye, search for specific activities by age group or skills learned, and download pdf files of individual activities. Resources in these databases have been viewed more than 106,000 times in the past year. More than 6,000 people have visited the databases.
The CoP members are now developing an interactive database of children’s books, which will allow visitors to share comments about specific books and ideas for using them. Visitors will be able to suggest new books for the database. This book database, developed to support childcare providers through the Military Families Learning Network, will be released to the public this fall.
For information about how Moodle might contribute to your educational efforts, contact the eXtension Campus help desk at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also contact Diane Bales at The University of Georgia Cooperative Extension (email@example.com) for more information about the activities databases.