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How Children’s Movement Affects Development

In the first five years of life, children go from being helpless babies to capable little people. It is a time of significant leaps in development physically, mentally and emotionally. The early childhood educators at Scribbles Childcare Centre in Auckland know that children learn best from doing, which is why movement is a key part of life at our daycare centres.

Here’s just a few of the ways that allowing kids to move freely helps their development during these crucial early years.


Once children start to move about on their own, they become aware not only of the space around them, but of their selves as well. Through movement they are learning a basic anatomy lesson, discovering abilities and limitations. This early awareness of their bodies is the building block upon which their understanding of self will grow.


Non-verbal communication comes to our little ones sooner than language. Through movement and exploration, children build these skills, learning to tell you what they want or need long before they learn to use words.

Non-verbal language is all about movement – signalling with their hands, reaching for something they like, expressions on their faces – and at our childcare centre, we proudly encourage these early methods of physical communication.


Found in the inner ear, the vestibular system – essential to balance – starts to develop before birth and continues well into adulthood. Movements like rocking, spinning and rolling vibrate tiny hairs in the inner ear, developing this system which in turn enhances vision, muscle tone and language.

Emotional Well-Being

Children given free range to move and play have a head start when it comes to emotional wellbeing. Floor time from an early age followed up with freedom to dance, climb, jump and spin helps build confidence and self-expression – two vital parts of the emotional wellbeing puzzle.

At Scribbles Early Childcare Centre with three locations in Auckland – Mt Wellington, Mt Roskill and Onehunga, we love seeing the benefits of physical movement in our children each and every day.