How can play help during the quarantine (and all year round)?

parents play with your children

I know, keeping a child with so much energy to burn inside the home the entire day in times like this is quite challenging! Oh, trust me, I know!!! I had my share of rainy and snow days in my career and looking back on those isolated incidents feels nothing like what we are going through at the present moment!!!

It may be difficult for children to comprehend and it is quite frustrating for parents, especially for those working from home who still have only a limited time to spend with their children as they still have deadlines, meetings, calls and all that. Some may have thought that working from home would be a dream, just to find out, in times like this, it can also be quite the unproductive nightmare!!!

Tasks and professional obligations aside, it is important though, not to forget your child’s most important job – PLAY! In times like this, if there is anything that will keep them flourishing, it is their ability and opportunity for lots of unstructured play!

Today, more than ever before, play is more than recommended, but a necessity in helping developing independence, character, personality and so much more. Unstructured play, there is, when children use random objects to make up their own games, or when they explore their curiosity with open-ended materials in general, are enriching for the imagination and adaptation of the child. They learn about their own likes and limitations, develop and healthy have a sense of control and, bet of all, don’t feel pressured to get things working the way they want! Spending time exploring the backyard or independent play – there is, child-led, without adult interference, are excellent examples of unstructured play.

Engaging in Social Play stimulates empathy feelings!

Social play is just as important as independent play! If you have twins, you’ve hit the jackpot early though siblings, in general, will help with socialization. This may be a tricky time if you have an only child and can’t have play dates but YOU would have to step up and be their social buddy! Socialization strengthens relationships, the collective feeling, compassion, and sharing; all necessary skills at the time in which we live. It is scientifically proven that 80% of behavioral traits are influenced by environmental factors and 20% by genetic factors and that is why parents, caregivers, and peers hold such important roles as they are directly influencing children every day.

In addition to working memory, attention and creativity, recreational activities are important for resilience, cooperation, and self-esteem. Thus, building skills that will serve for the whole life. You can also detach a time to play with your children because, as I have shared before, on top of treasuring a bonding moment this time will also relieve your stress. 

Books, books and more books! Children’s literature helps not just with literacy skills but also language development, memory, creativity, socio-emotional and much more 

Children’s books allow a child to experience many different experiences, and it also helps with empathy and problem-solving when you think about the story’s characters and things they are going through. It broadens their view of the world around them and the benefits of reading is not just about the intellect – it enriches not only culturally, but also emotionally, both children and grownups! 

What types of play will you engage your children today?

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