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Importance of Play in Early Childhood Development

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Childhood Development List down the things you learnt in a formal learning space. Now, list down the things you learnt while you were at play? It won’t be a wonder if the second list is longer – that is the power of play in education regardless of your age. But play holds special importance in early childhood development. 

The importance of Play throughout our lives

Play is integrated in nature, young mammals of all species are seen playing, and that is their way of growing, developing fit bodies, and they practice social and emotional skills. By playing together they learn to survive with each other and collaborate. In the risky plays, they learn to face fear without losing their calm and learn how to save themselves in emergencies. We can still find hunter gatherers around the continent, whose children are observed playing all day from dawn to dusk without adult supervision. The parents believe that this play enables them to acquire skills they will need to grow into adulthood. These children are found to be the smartest, resilient, adjusting and above all – the happiest! To put it short, play is nature’s way of making sure our kids develop the skills they will need as adults Childhood Development.

Here is a quick list of the benefits of free play throughout our childhood and even as we grow up –

·       Play stimulates early brain development – it helps them understand the world and influences brain growth later.

·       Improves intelligence.

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·       Reduces stress levels.

·       Sparks creativity.

·       Improves communication vocabulary and language.

·       Promotes impulse control, emotion regulation, and team play.

·       Grows social competence and empathy.

·       Better physical and mental health.

·       Teaches life lessons.

·       Strengthen relationships with peers.

·       It helps them practice all their learning in context.

What missing out on play has led to

Today, our children are deprived of this important element of play. Our childhood consisted of play at school and play at evenings.  Today, the dynamics of learning have changed, and it barely has any play in it. Even the evening sport sessions are now in uniforms on manicured fields with coaches directing them. What defines play is the self-controlled and self-directed aspect of it that allows optimum learning Childhood Development.

A very close coincidence also shows the parallel rise in children’s mental health disorders as the notion of play declined over the past few decades. One of the major reasons is that this environment now builds a lack of self-control in children when they grow up – which is also directly linked to anxiety and depression. Along with that, research shows that narcissism is fairly increasing in children and empathy is relatively declining. Similarly, creativity in children is now becoming more and more rare than it actually used to be. The most surprising research says that children are now facing more depression than they were at the time of war and holocaust. Such is the drastic impact of depriving them of play. And yet, the only cry we hear today is more school – not more play!

Let’s start to live by the motto – we don’t need to separate play and learning, we never have to say – let’s stop playing and listen now, because both of those things – learning and play – go hand in hand.  For as you learn through play, when you grow up, your work will be a play too Childhood Development ! 

The elements of play aid in early childhood development. All of these combined in a unique and powerful program applying a plethora of tools at an early age, is offered at Brainnovation Dubai. Their team believes in strengthening skills in a FUN, engaging yet scientifically proven way. Some interventions can go a long way Childhood Development.  

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