To a child, play = learning
Let's dwell into an interesting topic this morning…. PLAY!
My question to you this morning is how do you view play? Or in other words, what does play look like to you.
So let's ask yourself this question – what is PLAY?
Before you answer, think back when you were a child. How did you play with your siblings or friends? What did you do?
- Did you run around in the neighbourhood?
- Was it mainly indoors or outdoors?
- What was your play like at school?
Can you still remember what play actually looks and feels like? I mean really play, such as free play, or having friends over, make-believe play, pretend-play, role-play, group-play, outdoor play, or instead, having structured play, or playing team sports?
As for myself, I was very lucky; we played both at school and at home… structured play at school but plentiful of FREE play at home.
We had a play ground outside out home, so all the neighbourhood children would meet there at around 5pm, and that was the most fun and enjoyable time of the day. Also we had plenty of opportunities to meet up with our cousins to play.
Location also impacts on play. There are many families who grew up in highrise- buildings, while some were in rural areas or in the big cities. These are different surroundings for a child. How you played when you were a child would have some impact in how your view play between yourself and your children.
For example, some families who were brought up with the focus to achieve academically, would view play as a waste of time. They would think that instead of playing, why not spend the time studying or being enrolled in structured activities that would enhance academic excellence i.e. tuition classes, swimming sessions, music lessons, drama classes etc.
So how was your childhood experience with ‘play’?
- Were you allowed to play outdoors?
- Were you made to feel guilty for playing and not studying?
- Did you have to support your family ,and so play became a luxury?
- Did your parents play with you?
- Was play a reward for good behaviour?
- Did your parents see play separate from academic learning?
- Were they too busy at work and did not have time to play with you?
- Did you experience over-structured afterschool and weekend programs?
- Were your parents worried that play or physical play may be too dangerous for you?
- Did your parents prefer the indoor-activities like shopping malls?
- Were you encouraged to play with your friends and neighbourhood children?
- Did your parents view play as a priority for connections and empowering you?
What is PLAY? Can you define this activity?
Play does not have to be structured; it can be any activities that your children enjoy. It can be drawing, dancing, make-believe, stacking boxes, reorganising your pantry, chopping the vegetables or running around with friends or siblings… PLAY can be anything as long as your child is having fun doing it.
So, how do you feel about play? What does play look like to you?
Are you able to share your experiences? I would love to hear your experiences about play.
Remember – Children learn and develop through play.