(ssh, children let us in on the secret)

Read on for a child’s view on the importance of play.

What is play?

Play is such a wonderful and relaxing activity. It is amazing how we can play with anything and at any time and how much happiness the process brings us. However, don’t think that when playing, we are just having fun; we are very busy learning as well. Play helps us develop many new skills and refine those we have already acquired. It sharpens our senses and improves our concentration, thinking, imagination, and creativity.

Simply put, it is good for us to play.


How do we develop through play?

Look at the many ways we develop just by playing.

Physical Development

Since the day we are born, we need room to move. It is important for us to discover that it is us controlling our body movements, not anybody else. To do that, we need a supporting environment where we can run, climb, jump, and explore. We need to be able to engage in a variety of activities that exercise our whole body. We really need to develop every single little muscle in our bodies to grow into healthy adults.

Play is the way.


Emotional Well-being

Playing is fantastic for our emotional development. Not only do we get an opportunity to show our emotions freely, but we can also escape into a world of fantasy. During our explorations we learn how to control our feelings, how to express them, and how to share them with others. We can share what we are afraid of, relieve our anxiety, and get rid of frustration. It helps us to learn what the others are feeling too.

Learning is easier when we are happy; and when we are happy, everyone else is as well.


Social and Cultural Development

As we grow, our interactions with other children and people change to be more complex. It is amazing how fast we go from the initial ‘me’ thinking to caring about others. Through play we learn how to share and make friends and how to be confident doing it. We discover that everyone is different, with different beliefs, ideas and values, of different sizes and colours, but with the same rights. We gain respect for our friends and become comfortable to protect their rights as well.

Playing makes us stronger and able to be part of our world.


Communication Skills

Can you hear how well we can talk? Playing was the culprit. First, we could communicate only non-verbally but by watching you and our friends we started learning the ‘noisy’ way. We have acquired many ways to express our thoughts; we can do it by talking, drawing, writing, gestures … and shouting. We love playing because it gives us a chance to practice our language, extend our vocabulary and also learn how to listen.

We are still learning and we always will be so please, give us every opportunity you can to play.


Cognitive Development

  1. How do we improve our learning?
  2. By keeping our brain busy.
  3. How do we do that?
  4. By playing, of course.

When playing, our brain doesn’t stop. It constantly processes images and data and stores it for later use. This incredible chest of knowledge and skills we have gained helps us now and will be invaluable during our whole life. All new information we gather in the future will already have a base to connect with and will not be flying around our brain aimlessly.

Playing makes us smarter.


Now you know why we love playing so much.

Will you join us?


How Can You support our learning through play and exploration?

You can design such conditions that make our learning almost effortless. That doesn’t mean to make it simple; we would love you to complicate things a bit. And feel free to do it so cunningly, that we don’t even notice that we are actually learning.

You can plan challenging activities while bearing in mind the developmental stages we are at. We don’t want you to make it too simple or too hard for us. That wouldn’t work at all. Too easy? We wouldn’t learn much. Too hard? We might give up too soon. When you think you’ve got it just right, give us plenty of space and time for investigations and respect and share our achievements.

We love when you observe our play without unnecessary interruptions. Please, just let us explore our own ideas, thoughts, and knowledge. Whenever you interrupt our deep play by suggestions (even when they are meant in a very good way), it breaks our train of thoughts and indicates that what we were doing, wasn’t enough. Trust us, we know what we are doing when playing.

However, you can listen to our cues and be ready to broaden our knowledge with yours. You can also gather information and resources to extend our interests and observe and assess how much we have accomplished. We love having that shared with us.


Together we can create a warm and relaxing atmosphere in which learning becomes child’s play.

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