When we hear the word “play” we instantly think about games and fun. But do you know that play goes far beyond that? Play is considered to be children’s language. It is their way of exploring their surroundings, learning new skills, negotiating with pairs, taking risks, and ultimately living new experiences. It is due to this reason that your child’s playtime is probably the most important part of their day.
Since play has so much importance in a child’s life, parents and educators must incorporate it into their everyday routine, most notably in their learning process. But how exactly can they do that? The answer is simple: play-based learning. This is a fun yet engaging way to help children learn and engage with the world around them. The key is the design activities catering to the different interests children have. These activities must be unstructured, self-directive, process-oriented and fun!
So, what makes it so important? Does a joyful and engaging learning experience make a difference? Are there any cognitive and physical benefits of play-based learning? Let’s take a look.
Why Is Play-Based Learning So Important?
Enhances Cognitive Growth
One of the critical benefits of play-based learning is that it helps in cognitive development. When your child participates in fun activities, they can explore the world around them. They are exposed to countless new phenomena, ensuring they learn something new every time. For instance, giving your child a puzzle to solve develops their critical thinking skills and problem-solving and time management skills, ultimately enhancing their cognitive growth.
Improves Social Skills
Unsurprisingly, children show more enthusiasm about learning with friends than learning independently. Play-based activities allow them to interact with their peers, allowing them to develop positive relationships with them and discover social norms and behaviors. You will see how your child starts taking turns, cooperates with others and knows to share toys once they participate in play-based activities with other kids.
When children learn in creative ways, they tend to express themselves creatively, as well. Experimenting and exploring push them to think differently, enhancing their imagination. Children are no longer bound to a specific curriculum or way of learning, so they can try new things and be open to new ideas.
Develops Them Emotionally
Crying and throwing a tantrum should not be the only way children express how they feel. Play-based activities give children an opportunity to explore not only what’s around them but also what’s inside. They learn what makes them happy and what makes them sad. What actions evoke anger, and what calms it down? They learn to manage their emotions as there is more room for mistakes and less pressure about being judged.
Enhances Physical Development
Remember playing hopscotch as a kid? Not only did it teach you how to add numbers but also to jump on one foot! That’s how play-based activities differ from traditional learning methods. They hone children’s physical abilities, for instance, teaching them how to balance, hop on one foot, catch a ball, run etc., using a number of fine motor skills.
Times have changed. Today, learning is not just about reading books and practicing sums. It is more than that. Fun-based learning activities allow your child to explore the world around them and learn something new in a fun and exciting way. At Early Beginners Preschool & Daycare Learning Center, we practice fun play-based learning so your child never gets bored. Get in touch with us to learn more.