A Place of Our Own
About the Series Feedback Glossary Search Go Español
Home Topics Activities Resources Episode Guide Active Learning
Early Learning Areas : Learn
Early Learning Areas: Learn Children learn from everything around them and with all of their senses. In this culture we have chosen to put special emphasis on cognitive skills. These are the thinking, logic, and language skills we traditionally cover in schools.

Ideas, Issues and Advice

There are two parts to cognitive learning:

  1. Developing learning skills. Understanding cause and effect, knowing how to read, the ability to add and subtract, sequencing and thinking logically, and knowing how to find answers to questions, are all examples of cognitive skills.
  2. Developing factual knowledge. The ability to name animals, plants, shapes, and colors, knowing the difference between something that is alive and something that is not, understanding what a number represents, and developing vocabulary are all examples of factual knowledge.

There are many ways to foster children’s cognitive development. Reading aloud, using video and computers, planning hands-on activities, allowing children time for free play, and incorporating learning strategies into your everyday routines, you can help children become excellent learners. There are literally thousands of resources designed to help children build cognitive skills and subject area knowledge. A good starting point is watching A Place of Our Own and visiting these websites:

Related Links

Simple explanations of the basic philosophies of early childhood education and where the ideas came from is a great starting point for anyone caring for children.

Scholastic has developed a variety of resources for different learning areas:


A quick reference from Parent and Child magazine on how to promote scientific thinking.



A quick reference on age-by-age recommendations for doing science with preschoolers



A very handy chart summarizing math concepts appropriate for various ages and stages.



This thinking skills chart from the PBS series, The Whole Child, can help you know what children are capable of at various stages of development.

Language and Literacy

The PBS series, Between the Lions has created one of the most comprehensive sites online about literacy for beginning readers. Click here to find ten quick tips that can help you encourage children’s reading and language development.




Resources on reading and language development from the National Center for Family Literacy and the Hispanic Family Literacy Institute



A very useful collection of tips, articles, and resources on reading and emergent literacy has been collected by the folks at Reading is Fundamental.



PBS, in cooperation with the American Library Association, provides annotated book recommendations searchable by topic for both children and adults on a range of topics relating to emotions, behavior, getting along with others, health and safety, healthy media use, difference and diversity, disabilities, reading and language development, etc.


View Other Topics
Play & Creativity
Health & Safety
Child Development
Social & Emotional Development
Special Needs
Child Care Management
Downloads (Get Reader)
Tips on Choosing Books for Children pdf
Tips on Doing Math with Preschoolers pdf
Tips on Doing Science with Preschoolers pdf
Tips on Using Media pdf
Tips on Choosing Media pdf
© 2007 Community Television of Southern California. All rights reserved.