Your guide to parenting in Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts

By Cathy Saunders, Director of Education, Providence Children’s Museum

As summer winds down and parents start to think about preparing for the school year, it’s easy to get caught up.

At the Children’s Museum, we’ve been thinking about problem solving a lot lately. We’ve looked at the obvious connections between the playful learning experiences we try to foster and some of the formal educational standards. Problem solving is a foundational skill that appears in the RI Early Learning Development Standards, Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core Standards and is something that we have a lot of fun with.August2015PCM

How do you know when your child is exercising problem-solving skills? There are times that seem obvious – she completes a complicated puzzle or negotiates taking turns with a friend. But sometimes it can be easy to miss moments where a child is building his problem-solving tool kit.

Here are some of the things we look for and celebrate:

And these are some ways we like to spur children’s problem solving:

Problem solving opportunities occur throughout the day – when getting ready for school, making a meal, playing... Seize the opportunity in those small moments to notice and encourage your child’s innate ability to use logical thinking to reason things out.

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