Skill Development Among Children Through Play and What They Need to Play?
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Skill Development Among Children Through Play and What They Need to Play?

Play can be defined as "the spontaneous activity of children." Play is so important to optimal child development that it has been recognized by the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights as a right of every child. This article offers useful information for parents and teachers to remind the advantages of active play and keep the children away from passive entertainment (eg, television and computer games). You can also learn what children need to play. Play is a cherished part of childhood that offers children important developmental benefits. Through play, children practice the roles they will play later in life. Play is essential to development because it contributes to the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional well-being of children and youth. Play also offers an ideal opportunity for parents to engage fully with their children. Play allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, dexterity, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. Play is important to healthy brain developmet
Play can be defined as "the spontaneous activity of children." Play is so important to optimal child development that it has been recognized by the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights as a right of every child. This article offers useful information for parents and teachers to remind the advantages of active play and keep the children away from passive entertainment (e.g., television and computer games). You can also learn what children need to play.

Play is a cherished part of childhood that offers children important developmental benefits. Through play, children practice the roles they will play later in life. Play is essential to development because it contributes to the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional well-being of children and youth. Play also offers an ideal opportunity for parents to engage fully with their children.  Play allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, dexterity, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. Play is important to healthy brain development.

The experience of playing helps children develop a wide variety of skills. Play is a valuable opportunity for children to practice focusing attention on a single task. Children's attention span develops naturally as they get older. Play is a good opportunity for children to develop their attention spans because it is a child-directed activity. Children choose to play, what and how to play, how long to play, and when to switch activities. Because they have these choices, they tend to stay focused on play activities longer.

Children practice a wide variety of skills during play, including:

  • Gross motor skills — big movements of the arms, legs, and trunk
  • Fine motor skills — small movements of the hands, fingers, mouth, and tongue
  • Eye-hand coordination
  • Visual tracking — following objects with both eyes                  

Play also helps children develop cognitive and language skills, such as:

  • Creative thinking
  • Reasoning
  • Problem-solving
  • Planning and decision making
  • Listening
  • Communicating

Undirected play allows children to learn how to work in groups, to share, to negotiate, to resolve conflicts, and to learn self-advocacy skills. When play is allowed to be child driven, children practice decision-making skills, move at their own pace, discover their own areas of interest, and ultimately engage fully in the passions they wish to pursue.

What Children Need for Play?

Children need the following things to develop and promote play:        

  • new experiences for high-quality play
  • chances to explore and experiment with new materials
  • uninterrupted playtime
  • safe and developmentally appropriate toys (appropriate for the child's age and ability)
  • safe spaces to explore freely without being restricted
  • a small amount of quiet time to process what they have learned before beginning a new activity

Children do not need:

  • fancy or expensive toys
  • toys that claim to make a child smarter

The most important "toy" for young children is you. Children love the time they spend with adults, and learn best through face-to-face interaction with other people. Young children do not necessarily need expensive toys. Play can be just as effective with everyday things from around the house — such as a box, a wooden spoon, or a plastic bowl — as with pricy toys that may be outgrown quickly.

Learning to play with others is a complex skill that develops over time. Playing with others requires children to take turns, to cooperate, and to negotiate with others. Through play, children can practice taking multiple points of view.

Source: "Better Brains for Babies'

Play is a simple joy that is a cherished part of childhood. Play is integral to the academic environment. It ensures that the school setting attends to the social and emotional development of children as well as their cognitive development.

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Comments (6)

This was a great article and allowed me to reflect on my children who are all grown adults now, but played well when they were young helping them grow in body and mind. Out of votes for now.

Nice presentation.

I don't have children but I learned much form your points here..

Brilliant article, I've a little boy of a year and this will come in handy!

Great article, well presented!

Karbyn

I completely agree with all this, and encourage people to visit www.play-smart.com for more of this type of information.

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