Author: Deb Avery | Published on 1 March 2023


Question: Do young children develop learning skills by themselves?

Answer: Yes – to an extent – but the teacher can help particularly with regard to cognitive skills.

To learn effectively, young children need:

  • Individual attention and approval from the teacher
  • Tasks that are challenging (but not too challenging)
  • Routines which make them feel secure
  • Support from the teacher and other adults (e.g. their parents)

How can you help young learners develop cognitive skills? 

  • Have a stimulating classroom environment e.g. use pictures, posters and charts.
  • Have classroom norms, so learners know what behaviour is expected 
  • Provide work at the appropriate level
  • Give learners problems to solve
  • Teach skills such as independence and responsibility

How will you guide and support your young learners?


cognitive skills: brain-based skills

routines: a set of procedures for handling both daily occurrences and minor interruptions of instruction

stimulating classroom environment: an environment where students can learn through exploration and hands-on practice

classroom norms: the behavioral expectations or rules of the class