One of the biggest concerns of parents is the development of their child’s language, emotional intelligence, literacy and numeracy skills
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Three quarters of parents are concerned about the impact of Covid on their child’s early development – a third fear they have been held back.
A survey of 1,000 parents who have had a baby in the past five years found that one in four (26%) are concerned about their child’s language because of the pandemic.
And another 35% worry about how their child’s emotional intelligence might be affected.
It also found that seven out of ten do not fully understand what should be expected of their child at their age, as they have had less contact with other parents and families themselves.
Kelly Philp, spokeswoman for the Fisher-Price Play Lab, which co-commissioned the research with national charity Family Action, said: “Two years later, young children are being hit hard by the pandemic.
“There is a lot to be said for social interaction with others and the development that it brings – as well as the missed opportunities and consequences of not experiencing them.”
Fisher-Price Play Lab)
It also found that literacy, the ability to play with others, and understanding one’s own emotions were other concerns parents had about their child’s development.
According to their mothers and fathers, their child had the greatest impact on their child when they met fewer new people, saw fewer friends or family than usual, and did not attend peer groups.
Fewer visits to public hotspots, more time at home and generally less travel were other problems caused by the pandemic.
As a result, 43% would welcome the help of early childhood development professionals to ensure their child meets milestones that may have been hampered by limitations in recent years.
Currently, parents and carers typically go online or to their healthcare advisor for advice on their child’s development – a quarter speak to friends with children for comparison.
Family Action has partnered with the Fisher-Price Play Lab in an initiative that will provide funding, resources and toys for early childhood development that have been shown to help with social, language, motor and numeracy skills.
The year-long partnership will provide a range of activities and resources focused on supporting young children and their parents and caregivers with early childhood development (ECD) and reaching key milestones that may have been impacted during the pandemic .
It will focus on how carers can playfully incorporate simple techniques into the home environment to support children’s learning.
Family Action will also introduce this learning as a special program in some of their centers.
David Holmes CBE, Chief Executive of Family Action, said: “Vulnerable families have been disproportionately affected by the impact of the global pandemic and face a multitude of challenges brought on by the uncertainty of the last two years.
“Family Action’s experience of supporting families, parents and carers over the past 153 years tells us that the best way to support them is to empower them with knowledge and resources.
“Our partnership with Fisher-Price will invest in this work and provide families with the resources and opportunities to support their children’s development and build a better future.”
Fisher-Price Play Lab)
The study also found that six in 10 parents have been spending more time at home with their child because of the pandemic – with 30% now feeling separation anxiety as a result of the pandemic.
And 31% of children experience the same feelings when saying goodbye to their parents or caregivers – with 74% of those experiencing separation anxiety for either themselves or their child blaming the pandemic for making it worse.
The majority (65%) try to support their child’s early childhood development by talking to them a lot, buying educational toys and engaging in lots of games or activities.
However, 39% feel they have missed valuable time with their child due to the pressures surrounding the pandemic.
Kelly Philp added, “As a cornerstone of Fisher-Price for 60 years, the Fisher-Price Play Lab has particular expertise in ECD and supporting families and young children.
“We are proud and honored to work with Family Action to support their important early childhood development work across the UK at such an important time.
“This initiative with Family Action will empower parents and carers to help children thrive and have the best start in life.
“This is particularly important to us at Fisher-Price, as we understand the important role children play in their early years.”
TOP 20 CONCERNS OF PARENTS DURING THE CHILD DEVELOPMENT PANDEMIC:
- social interaction
- Social skills
- Ability to understand their emotions/feelings
- Speech – saying words or crying, babble, squeak, etc.
- Literacy skills – like spelling their name or reading simple words
- Understanding of communication – such as “rolling the ball” or “throwing the ball”
- Recognizing places – knowing where things are
- Numerical skills – like sorting shapes or counting small numbers
- Emotional intelligence
- Movement – such as crawling, walking, jumping etc.
- attention span/concentration
- Self-awareness – like laughing, revealing oneself
- Non-verbal communication – like pointing, nodding, etc.
- Memory – Ability to remember events or facts about people
- recognize faces
- Imagination – ability to play
- sports/exercise habits
- Fine motor skills – such as stacking blocks
- Musculoskeletal Development
https://www.mirror.co.uk/lifestyle/family/parents-worry-child-development-pandemic-26547971 Three quarters of parents are concerned about the impact of the pandemic on their child's development