What is one thing that kids live for? Play time! Play time for kids is an enjoyable and engaging activity. Running around or playing with toys not only boosts children’s energy during the day, but also enhances their physical, mental and emotional well-being. Different forms of play help their overall development, and can also relieve stress, anxiety and can fuel creativity. These are only a few of the benefits that highlight the importance of play time for kids. Let’s walk through each of these benefits a bit more:
Play fuels their imagination & creativity
Play time doesn’t may involve physical activity and playing games outdoors. Play time for kids can entail staying inside enjoying other activities. In these moments, children can use their imagination and creativity.
Playing “make-believe” is the most common form of this type of play. There is no need to be concerned if you see your child playing alone and pretending to talk to some “friends” whether imaginary or in the form of dolls or stuffed animals. This type of play does not necessarily signify that your child is lonely or shy. It can actually indicate that your child is a highly social and creative individual. Make-believe games help children practice conversation skills, as it allows your child to indirectly talk about their feelings, ideas and emotions with characters that give them comfort. This can significantly contribute to their cognitive and social development.
Play strengthens their problem solving skills
While we can all see the pros and cons that technology brings to our everyday lives, we can all admit, it has also paved the way to provide better learning experiences for your child in the form of games and educational apps. Some of the technology geared toward children may seem mindless and even addictive, but some of these apps casually and effectively hone your child’s problem solving skills. For example, in order to advance to the next level in some of these games , children may need to find ways to solve a puzzle or complete a goal. Games that involve these types of activities, even as simple as stacking and color matching, provide opportunities for your child to use their problem solving skills.
Play enhances your child’s fine and gross motor skills
Although the ability to move typically develops naturally as your child grows, motor skills – which involve the precise movements of a muscle – require practice and repeated gestures. Some games help enhance motor skills. Just as musicians and athletes engage in constant practice, kids also need practice to help refine their motor skills. When they play catch or cut shapes out of paper, your child develops muscle memory. This helps them improve as they grow and develop. Parents should can use these activities as an opportunity to teach the value of practice. It’s only with constant practice that children improve .
Play helps improve their language skills
Indoor games that promote language learning and development can also help to improve your child’s vocabulary and comprehension. Just as pretend games that allow them to be creative with make-believe characters and conversations, playing dress-up also allows children to expand their vocabulary as they use words and jargon involving different topics. Pretend quiz shows or playing games like Scrabble and Charades can also help improve your child’s vocabulary and general knowledge.
Play helps to develop their social skills
Play time for kids helps your child build social skills. Whether in school or among family members and friends, play time is essential in your child’s social-emotional development. It’s an amazing opportunity to teach your child the value of sharing, teamwork and sportsmanship. Playing sports allows children to have first-hand experience interacting with others who enjoy the same activity. This is something your child won’t have the the chance to experience if he or she only plays in solitude.
Play time is often seen as an activity to give children a break from classroom activities, but there’s even more to the advantages of play time than meets the eye. Not only does it help burn off excess energy in kids so they can better focus in class, but play time also teaches valuable life lessons and helps develop fundamental skills that your child needs.
Help make learning a fun experience for your child! Creative Learning Academy offers engaging childcare programs for children ranging from 1-11 years old. Call (813) 882-3382 with inquiries and schedule a tour today!