Play is one of the most important jobs that children must do. Through play, they are learning from experience, imagination, repetition and joy. Play has a role in helping children reach their milestones and develop as they grow.
The type of play changes as the child grows from being a newborn to a toddler, to a child, and the amount of interaction that they need from their parents and care-givers changes, but one thing stays the same, the importance of quality interaction.
Play has changed as the world has changed. Children are spending more time looking at screens than they are running around bare-footed, feeling the ground underneath their toes. We are allowing our children to become less physical and more reliant on technology for entertainment. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, it is recommended that children should avoid any screen time until at least 2 years old. They state that “any positive effect of television on infants and toddlers is still open to question, but the benefits of parent-child interaction are proven.” So how much time are we spending with our children?
On Friday 7th June we held a workshop on age appropriate play for newborns to 1 year olds. Our participants and their little ones spent an hour in the practice learning about the “why”, “when” and “what” involved in play.
- The “why” included information about the developing nervous system and that the first 2 years of life are the most critical for brain development
- The “when” was all about what activities and stimulation is best suited at different stages during the first year
- The “what” included all the play exercises that we can do with and for our little ones to enhance their development by creating the right environment for them to “work” and thrive in.
We look forward to holding the next one on Friday 12th July for 1-2 year olds!