The toy library model provides a good setup for introducing and practicing education for sustainable development in early years. The three main pillars of ESD (Economic, Environmental and Social pillars), are easily explored and achieved through fun activities.
Environmental Pillar of ESD
Children partcipate in tree planting as a way of taking care of their environment and securing their future.
To ensure sustainable play, children are trained in material development. Here, they develop a number of play and learning materials from waste and locally available resources. In this manner, children make sense of their environment, learn to recycle or reuse and appreciate their environment, setting a firm foundation of environmental and natural resources conservation. Their end products foster creative and critical thinking, control, confidence, collaboration, communication, and coordination skills.
Economic Pillar of ESD
Entrepreneurship project is a topic in the new competence based curriculum’s environmental activities area. The toy library activities shed light on this topic with practical ideas on how this topic can be handled and how to conduct activities around it to shift from employment to job creation. This also enriches learning.
Social Pillar of ESD
Our widespread prosperity as a nation directly depends on cohesion and equitability to achieve social development. TLA-KE acknowledges that early childhood development is multi-faceted. Play being universal, is the only approach through which developmental milestones and domains can be achieved. Cultural values and acquaintances can be developed in this manner. Activities conducted at the toy library are therefore collaborative and interactive, considering those with disabilities and underprivileged.
Basic sustainable farming is an outdoor activity teaching children basic farming skills from preparation of the farm to planting/transplanting and nurturing of the plants to the point of harvesting. This is an opportunity to teach them about proper nutrition and healthy food habits. This opens their mind to career path on food production, which would curb food insecurity and encourage healthy eating in future.
Other Activities & Skills developed at the Toy Library
Basic sewing and knitting are some life-long skills that a child develops. These fun activities also enhance concentration, eye-hand coordination and develops fine motor.
Art and Craft Activities
Through these activities they develop their fine motor skills and learn how to use materials like scissors and glue. They also learn about colours, shapes, sizes and textures. Here, the process is as important as the finished product.
Nature has immense benefits for children. Children’s interaction with nature enables more sensory stimulation. They breathe in fresh air with more oxygen. This interaction also gives them a good feeling, lowering rates of depression.