How do you like to go up in a swing
Up in the air so blue?
Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing
Ever a child can do!’
(from ‘The Swing’ in A Child’s Garden of Verses, Robert Louis Stevenson 1885)
The early years are exciting times both for children’s physical development as they grow, changing in shape and size, and for children’s movement development as they gain in body awareness and as they explore the vast range of available movement experiences within their environment. Not only is movement the main medium of exploration for the young child, but also physical activity is essential for normal growth, providing the necessary stimulus for normal development. Regular, vigorous activity is especially important at times of rapid growth.
We, as educators, have a responsibility for ensuring that the children we teach are exposed to the widest possible world of movement. Within that world of movement children need to experience a varied programme of activity which both balances the demands made on different parts of the body and takes into account the maintenance and enhancement of strength, mobility and endurance, helping to ensure the development of sound physique and posture. Giving children worthwhile movement experience will also develop motor competence and encourage motor confidence and