Playtime has an integral role in helping and encouraging kids to learn. Young children learn continuously, and often, play-based activities enable them to have fun and gain an education at the same time. If you’re keen to make the most of playtime with your kids, here are some tips and tricks.
Let your kids guide you
When it comes to setting up activities or choosing which toys to get out, let your children guide you. You will probably find that they have favorite toys or games and that they gravitate towards certain activities. Encourage your kids to share ideas and give feedback and observe how they learn. Many children find it easier to learn through practical activities, for example. Play to your child’s strengths and let them express their preferences.
Make use of resources
Today, there is a vast array of resources available via community centers, play schemes and educational programs for babies and toddlers, as well as online portals, websites and apps. If you’re looking for inspiration for new games, or you’d like to help your kids learn online, do some research, ask fellow parents for recommendations and look for offers for platforms like ABCmouse. Online resources are designed to make learning fun and they can also help parents to vary activities to keep young children interested and engaged.
Create learning experiences
If you think back to your days at school, there may be a few classes that stand out. For many of us, our favorite memories are outdoor classes in the summer or school trips. Learning experiences can be incredibly valuable, as they enable you to provide a different dimension to talking and reading about subjects and topics. Consider classes about trees or animals that live in the woods, for example. Your kids may enjoy reading stories about woodland creatures and learning about different types of trees they see in books, but going out into the woods and spotting those trees and animals in real life provides a more exciting and memorable learning experience. Planning nature walks and days out at child-friendly museums and galleries and going to zoos, wildlife parks, farms and aquariums will not only allow you to spend quality time together and have loads of fun, but it will also help your children to learn.
Interacting with your children during playtime is an excellent way to strengthen relationships, encourage communication and make sessions more fun. Try to get involved whenever possible. From storytelling and role-play to creative activities and active pursuits, there are all kinds of activities you can do as a family.
Not only will this help you to bond, but it will also give you a better understanding of your child’s interests and abilities. It can be really rewarding to see your kids learn and grow, so make the most of playtime together!
Allocate specific time
Setting aside specific time for play can be helpful in ensuring that it’s a priority in your household. When you make a conscious effort to schedule in time for play, you may find that you’re more likely to stick to it and that your kids are more motivated to get involved. Try to keep the atmosphere relaxed and fun – no pressure, no stress!
It can be difficult to balance work, household tasks and parenting duties, but making time for play is an important part of raising happy and healthy children. With a bit of creativity and organization, there are ways to include playtime in your busy schedule. You may find more frequent, shorter times are a possibility, as opposed to single longer sessions. Try during a load of washing (clothes or the dishwasher!) or straight after lunch on Sundays, for example.
In conclusion – playing with your kids can support their development. It can be fun, too!
Children learn through play from a very early age. Every parent wants their child to enjoy the early years and encourage learning and development. If you’re searching for ideas or inspiration for new activities, or you’re looking to make learning more fun, hopefully, these tips will come in handy. Let your children guide you and encourage them to share ideas, use resources, create learning experiences and get involved in activities with your kids.