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Children need regular, daily physical activity. This activity can be shared with whānau in a fun way.

Kids need regular physical activity

Watch the following video and consider the key messages about the relationship between brain development and physical movement.

Preschoolers – Get active | Raising children(external link)


Regular physical activity is essential for brain development.

There are three themes to movement:

  1. Stability – balance
  2. Locomotion – walking, running, jumping
  3. Manipulation – the ability to manipulate an instrument, for example, a bat or a crayon.

To acquire skills, children:

  • first make the discovery
  • then develop it through practice
  • finally master and perform it without needing to think about it.

Active kids need active whānau

Children learn best when they’re having fun. The guideline from the Ministry of Health and Sport New Zealand is that children under 5 should have 30 minutes of physical activity a day.

It doesn’t have to be all at one time – ‘snack-tivities’ are fine (little bits throughout the day).

Pātai atu ki te whānau:

  • What do you think of the messages in this video?
  • What sort of games, sports and physical activities happen in your whānau?
  • Are there things you all do together, tamariki and adults?
  • What other things can you do together that will increase your physical activity?
  • Which would give you the most enjoyment?
  • Would your tamaiti agree?

How does this relate to Tākai resources?

Baby wall frieze – Tukuna ahau kia mahi, kia mōhio ai ahau me pēhea te ako – Let me do things over and over again

Because lots of repetition helps me learn skills, and helps my brain to develop and my body grow strong. I need to practise things over and over again so I can master them.

Six things children need – Te hanga ao tōtika, ao haumaru – Structured and secure world

Giving our energetic tamaiti the opportunity for lots of vigorous, noisy and messy play, especially outdoors.

Helpful resources for whānau