- Category Advice Column, Child, Toddler
Children need to play. Do you ever wonder whether your child plays too much, or maybe not enough? When your child plays is it even educational or beneficial? As experts in Early Childhood Development, we at Skidz can tell you that children learn through play and that playing is extremely beneficial for your child. According to the American Academy of Paediatrics play contributes to the physical, emotional, cognitive and social skills of your child. It also gives the parent or caregiver the time to be fully engaged with the child. There are two types of play namely structured play and unstructured play.
Structured play also known as play with purpose, combines a learning objective with an enjoyable activity. This is the foundation of learning. So, if you want your child to learn some life skills, numbers and letters, sitting down with crayons, workbooks and flashcards is not going to cut it. To really engage in learning these skills should be taught through structured play.
The benefits of structured play are endless, so let’s look at a few.
- It introduces young children to physical activity. Starting a pattern of being active and teaching body awareness.
- It develops motor skills and coordination.
- Reinforces the bond between a child and caregiver.
- Sharpens listening skills as they learn new vocabulary and to follow instructions. There is a whole new world to discover.
- Boosts self-esteem as they get praised for attempting and mastering new skills.
Unstructured play, also known as free play, is not led by an adult but gives the child the freedom to decide what to do. This is beneficial for the child as they get a chance to be creative and use their imagination. It also gives them freedom to explore.
At Skidz we are passionate about play as means of early childhood development. That is why we have set up the Skidz Clever Activity Boxes. Each box comes with over 100 activities as well as the equipment for each activity. Here you are given the tools needed to engage your child in structured play, with a daily curriculum. This curriculum makes it easy for a working parent or full time caregiver to spend quality time with their child while playing and having fun, without having to do a lot of preparation. The boxes start from birth up to 5 years and is not a subscription service. For more information or to order your box of fun go to http://skidz.co.za or follow us on facebook for some awesome ideas of what to do at home www.facebook.com/skidzsa