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Why Playing is IMPORTANT to children

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Peachpurple writes review products and apps. Likes to test and share opinions with readers.

Day 3, HUB #3

Kids love to play by nature

Playing sandcastle is one of my kids favorite play

Playing sandcastle is one of my kids favorite play

Children's different point of view about playing

When we see children building plastic or wooden blocks, spreading their arms out pretending to be an airplane while humming the roar of the airplane’s engine, learning to skip jumping rope, we are likely to think that these children play are just for fun.

A different view from an adult occupation and doing homework.

Most of us were taught since our childhood days that play was fun but homework was a compulsory schoolwork to do every day and an occupation was an adult responsibility to work in order to earn some money.

However, we should learn to look into a child’s different point of view about play.

Children play is equally important as adult work because that are hard at work too, learning about the world by training themselves for future useful work.

Angry at play

A child learns how to control his anger instead of throwing off tantrums

A child learns how to control his anger instead of throwing off tantrums

Why children's play is important?

A very good question. Why is a child's play important?

Every child develops his:

  • social,
  • emotional,
  • physical and
  • personality growth through play.

This is how a child learns about the things around him that moves, react through his actions.

Initially, he may taken aback of the response from a toy but he will gradually start to use his five senses to play along with the toy.

What are the five senses?

  • Sight- see with his eyes
  • Smell- smell with his nose
  • Touch-feel with his hands and feet
  • Hear- hear with his ears
  • Taste- eat or drink with his mouth

A child's play is important in his early years as he is learning to explore his own world through his imaginative mind by experimenting different actions as he plays.

Example of play are:

  • Tossing the ball against the wall, why the ball bounces back at him?
  • Pushing off his bowl of peas off the table, why the peas scatters over the places?
  • Building up a pile of blocks, why does or doesn't the blocks fall off?

Through play, your child is working hard to understand the aftermath actions that he had done; cleaning up the mess !

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As your child grows, his imagination will be something out of the box, thinking of more complex situation as he motivate himself to try harder to achieve his "wants" in his play.

A child's play will enhance his:

  • being independent- learn how to do it on his own
  • creative talent- learn how to use an object to perform a task ( a box as his car )
  • solving problems- how to achieve his desire of an object by thinking of solutions instead of asking for mummy's help
  • curiosity- lots of questions are forming in his head, why and how the toys work.
  • social skill- he learns how to take turns, ask for help from older siblings or parent, learn to wait patiently, learning the basic manners such as "Thank you" , "Please" , and "Sorry"
  • develop feelings- happy, sad, anger, anxiety, tired, etc
  • emotions- learn how to control his emotional feelings; when he had to wait for his turn to play trucks or swing

My niece loved this Fisher price peek a boo giraffe when I bought it for her birthday present.

She is 3 years old and she loved to put in blocks of animals into the giraffe neck, stacking them up.

The blocks could come out from the bottom of the giraffe, which does not her hands. Sometimes the made of plastic sharp edges would hurt little hands when accidentally scraped but Fisher price toys do not have any sharp edges. That is why I chose this toy.

It comes with 8 different animals in each blocks of transparent plastic boxes, sealed with colorful roofs. This way, kids will not be able to pop in the animals into their mouth!

Toy Train from recycle materials

We made this toy train out of toilet paper rolls, pringles can and excess color paper. His favorite train at no cost!

We made this toy train out of toilet paper rolls, pringles can and excess color paper. His favorite train at no cost!

Children Never Give Up!

  • When a baby is passing a toy from one hand to another or learning to crawl downstairs by using his knee and legs instead of his hands.
  • a toddler pushing a block along the crack on the floor, pretending the crack is the road
  • pretending the block as a car, better than nothing!
  • children learn to improve themselves through their play, not because it is easy but it is hard.
  • Surprising, isn't it? Notice that children never give up easily when they face any difficulties in their play times.
  • They will ask for adults or older siblings help to solve their problems. Children are struggling everyday to experience more difficult tasks and to achieve what older siblings and adults can do.

My son used to play these wooden alphabet blocks when he was a toddler. I would recommend this toy for first time parents.

There are many choices to choose from in the market but Amazon featured these blocks of 1.75" size are suitable for 1.5 years old kids to hold onto their tiny palms.

The blocks woods don't come off, the colors are solid and the letters cut out are clear. My son and I had a great time stacking up the alphabets and then pushing the blocks off to make tumbling noises. It was fun. Just don't throw at each other!

.

Buy Wooden Blocks for toddlers

What toys are suitable for my child?

Toys which are suitable for a child depends on his age and his ability. Choosing the best toy isn't the main criteria right now.

Choosing the toy that he CAN play, doesn't hurt him or pose a danger to him.

Choose a simple toy that is:

  • not too small- he might put object into his mouth and swallow it
  • sharp pointed parts- he might hurt himself accidentally
  • colors- make sure the colors of the toys are non-toxic. The stain of the color might goes to his hands. What if he eats a biscuit with his stained hand? Will he get food poisoning?


From Baby to 10 months old


  • Babies from birth to 6 months love to play facial expressions.
  • You can see he focused on your facial expression very cautiously rather than the people around him.
  • Look at your baby and make funny faces as you see he giggles.
  • If you make a sad or crying face, he may kick you and cry along with you.
  • Babies also love peek-a-boo game, by using both our hands to close our face and open up slowly to show our exciting expression.
  • Never "Boo" a baby as you may scared him off.
  • 10month old loves anything that he can pushes, pull, put in his mouth and grabbing.
  • Look for fabric type toys or toy mobile with handles. He is learning to stand with his wobbly legs, a great chance for him to practice standing.


Lego sets, my son's favorite. He builds towers of high rise building and houses of his own imagination

Lego sets, my son's favorite. He builds towers of high rise building and houses of his own imagination

Nice to hug Winnie the Pooh bears, my son loves to play fighting games with the bears

Nice to hug Winnie the Pooh bears, my son loves to play fighting games with the bears

Dolls with assorted dresses are girls best friend, pretending to be a mummy role

Dolls with assorted dresses are girls best friend, pretending to be a mummy role

Age 2- 5 years old

  • At this age, kids love to use his imagination to create nothing out of something. Using a hairbrush to comb his sibling's hair while he uses his own two front fingers as a pair of scissors to cut the hair. He is pretending to be a barber.
  • Get two toilet paper rolls, tie with a long string to pretend a telephone conversation.
  • A big box that could fit in two kids makes a great imaginative bus with passengers. Use teddy bears and dolls are extra passengers.
  • Kitchen set is any little girl's favorite toy, imitating mommy at home cooking up some delicious meal. You can buy a simple kitchen set or give her your old cooking tools to play with. make sure they are clean and sterilized.
  • Pretend to be a detective with make believe binoculars out of two toilet paper rolls and a string. My son became a detective, peeking behind the doors or the furniture.
  • Legos, every child's favorite blocks to form a building, house, car, table or anything that he can think off!

3D Recycle cardboard

My son made this 3D recycle cardboard

My son made this 3D recycle cardboard

Handmade toys that your kids can make

  • RECYCLING CRAFTS for KIDS
    Earth day is a day where kids and adults celebrate this day with many activities to help to save our planet Earth and to create awareness about our damaged environment due to men greed.Although we couldn't help in a big way, we could reuse, recycle a
  • Earth Day Craft: Easter Egg Pirate Ahoy!
    Easter egg craft for kids and adult, have fun making Easter Egg Pirate for Easter Day or Earth Day, turn it into a toy for your kids to play with. Recycle empty egg shells and papers into a craft
  • Earth day Crafts: Toilet Paper Roll Binoculars Craft for Kids
    Earth Day and Kids are wonderful combination which results to unique crafts and wild imaginations. Make this pair of recycle binoculars for your kid's toys. Fun filling activity on Earth Day

Let Children Play with Blocks

Lego Toy Car vs Realistic Toy Car?

Children usually love to play toys which are simple and easy to play with and they will stick to the toys, the longest.

Simple toys do not mean that the child doesn't use his brain at all. This is because simple and easy to play with toys give children lots of opportunity to widen their imagination.

For example, there are 2 different types of toy cars.

One is a realistic car with race tracks while the other is made from plastic blocks with various sizes that pile together easily( E.g.: LEGO, wooden blocks )

Most young children would only push one realistic car along the race tracks on the floor. It is not easy for children to detach and attach the race tracks together and they may get bored after a while.

However, the plastic block cars are different because children can pile 2 or 3 plastic blocks on top of each other, pretend to be a bus or a truck to pick up goods.

When they are bored, these plastic blocks become other vehicles, robots or a high tower building which help them to enhance their wildest imagination.


Toilet paper rolls to spare?

Keep toilet paper rolls after use. These are great for making toys and crafts

Keep toilet paper rolls after use. These are great for making toys and crafts

Handmade toys vs store bought toys

Children Can Accept Any Form of Toys

Parents usually have the misunderstood that expensive toys from branded companies are better than not so famous toys, foreign made toys.

The truth is, children are able to accept any form of toys, regardless of brands or handmade.

  • You can use 2 empty toilet roll, attach 1 strong string at one end and another string at the other end. This makes a fine telephone plaything that your children will play till their hearts content. If this self made telephone plaything does not last more than a week, do not buy fancier toys as you need to find out what your children really enjoy playing.

Otherwise, they will be spoil for choices, do not appreciate the toys that they have currently and do not take care the existing toys. Hence, they may destroy or damage the toys in order for you to buy new toys that had seen in television or toy stores.

(To tell you the truth, I have not buy any toys for my boy since he was born! All the toys that he has were given by his cousins, neighbors and his older sister’s toy which were 12 years ago! Don’t worry about the 12 years ago toys. They were sterilize, wash cleanly and basked under the hot sun before I hand them to him )


Allow Children to Play at their Own Level

Very often, a mother or a father who is playing with the child would make the play too serious. When a parent bought their little girl a doll with a whole set of various clothes; there is no doubt that the parent would interfere or teach the child how to dress the doll; starting with the underwear.

Mother and Daughter Different Opinion

  • However, little girl may want to start dressing up her doll with the blouse instead.
  • When the mother keeps correcting the child about the dress up consistency, the child gets annoyed easily because she was not given the freedom to choose the doll’s clothes that she prefers.
  • The child’s creativity and imagination are being controlled by the mother’s strong opinion and reluctance to let the child play at her own level.

Father and Son Different Opinion

Another set of example is when a father buys a set of car racing tracks for his toddler son. It is difficult for a father not to stop his child from playing the car which doesn’t go along the box instructions.

  • The father never had the opportunity to play the car racing tracks, gets excited to fit the tracks together. However, the young toddler runs out of patient and starts meddling with one of the toy cars along the side of the coffee table, as it falls off to the floor.
  • The father stopped his toddler from touching the toy car the toy car and sternly instructed him to sit quietly until the racetrack is completely set up.
  • The innocent child gets bored, lost his patience in waiting as he could not understand why he had to do so, wanders off to play something else which caught his attention.

Don't interfere unless you are asked

Only answer when you child ask for help

Only answer when you child ask for help

Should parents interfere a child's play?

The best method to rectify these problems is to allow the child to play in his own way.

Children will gradually have interest in dressing up dolls in a proper way, coloring the pictures accordingly and playing race track as the box instructions at different milestones of development.

  • Do not hurry or correct them every time they play incorrectly.
  • Let children play at their own level. Your actions will induce your children feeling useless and stupid.
  • As a result, their feelings and self esteem are hurt, create more harm than good as they will lose confidence and rely on adults all the time.
  • It is true that children love to have adults and older siblings to play with them, subject to play at their own childish level.
  • Allow your children how to play, ask them whether you can play in another method. If they disagree or disallow, just play along with their style.
  • Give them your opinion if they ask for your help. It is wise to make a research before purchasing a toy. If you have bought a complicated toy, let them play for a while and keep the toy away after you have explained to them your reasons.
  • Do not purposely hide the toys as they could not accept their new toy being taken away for no reason. Distract them with another simpler toy to play with. When the children are much older, they will be able to understand how to play the proper way.


© 2012 peachy

Comments

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on April 18, 2021:

Yup, during our days, playing was simple, my parents need not buy toys, boxes of toilet paper rolls and a ball makes a great bowling game

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on April 18, 2021:

I agree with you, nowadays children are either obsessed with cellphones, computers or being forced by parents to study this and that

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on April 18, 2021:

Oh congrats , you must be looking forward to your grandchild

Ravi Rajan from Mumbai on February 09, 2021:

good thoughts here to ponder peachpurple. It reminds me of my childhood days when things were so simple, carefree, and of course much more mischievous

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 09, 2021:

peachpurple this is an interesting hub about the facts of why playing is important to children. It is always i good for children to have that social life.

Mona Sabalones Gonzalez from Philippines on February 08, 2021:

I love the part where you mention all the ways children benefit from play, such as being independent, creative, solve problems, arouse curiosity, enhance social skills, feelings, and emotions. All these are perfect reasons why children should be encouraged to play. I am a grandmother in waiting, and your pointers will be implemented in due time. Great article!

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on September 19, 2017:

yes indeed

Kenna McHugh from Northern California on September 15, 2017:

As an adult, I enjoy playing. It lifts the spirit and the imagination is so much fun to use.

Louise Barraco from Ontario on July 26, 2017:

It's good now playing wasn't something I enjoyed but reading was which is good too I guess.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on July 26, 2017:

Sorry to hear that.

Louise Barraco from Ontario on July 25, 2017:

This Hub is Great Play is great to let kids get creative with their own minds. When I was young most of my play was work related because I have cerebral palsy and they wanted me to gain skills while playing, which is sometimes a good thing not always though because I didn't really like playing when I was older because it wasn't fun.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on October 15, 2015:

Thanks ladyguitarpicker, your grand daughter would be an enginner in future

stella vadakin from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619 on October 15, 2015:

Great hub with useful thoughts about playing. I have found out from our little granddaughter that she loves to build with empty oatmeal containers. The 5 year old likes to color them for the younger child. Her mom is a Dr. and they have tons of toys but she likes it here so she can play with the oatmeal containers.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on September 06, 2015:

thanks spin, yes i agree with you that discipline is compulsory too

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on June 14, 2015:

thanks

Akriti Mattu from Shimla, India on June 06, 2015:

Physical activity is extremely important for kids. So glad you wrote this piece. Voted up :)

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on May 08, 2015:

thanks treasuresbrenda, true, I still play board games too

Treasures By Brenda from Canada on May 07, 2015:

We loved playing with our children...and still do though the play is more likely to be a board game since they're grown men now.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on March 02, 2015:

thanks, kids imagination are wide, wild and beyond adults imagination

Hannah David Cini from Nottingham on March 01, 2015:

So very true, its lovely to see their imaginations and personality develop through play.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on February 05, 2015:

Millionaire Tips

true, kids should be allowed to play with their own imagination

Shasta Matova from USA on February 05, 2015:

I agree. Children should be given lots of time to play, and simple toys that let them use their imagination and expand their skills.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on January 23, 2015:

Joel Diffendarfer

you sound like a happy grandpa, my dad didn't had the time to play with my boy

Joel Diffendarfer from Jonesville on January 22, 2015:

Again, as usual, great article! Looking back at raising my (9) kids, I wish I would have played with them even more. All of my kids grew up camping and still do with their kids. All of my kids play with their kids. When it comes to my grandkids (so far, 11), I play with them constantly--I will play trucks and dolls...get dirtier than them, and don't regret a single minute of it. Thanks again for bringing joy to my day Peachy!

SAQIB from HYDERABAD PAKISTAN on November 05, 2014:

I have loved this hub for being natural about children. I think children (not babies) require a sense of freedom. That freedom allows them to display their love for any toy/ game or sport.

Regards

SAQIB

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on September 21, 2014:

thanks, i use empty boxes to make play toys for my son

Faith Reaper from southern USA on August 17, 2014:

Great insight here into children playing. Play is so important in the life of a child! I remember one Christmas I loaded my children down with gifts of great proportions LOL, I thought ... and guess what my son loved the most ... the large boxes the gifts came in. He would play for hours in those boxes ...lesson learned!

Now, with my grands, I take a different approach, but they ask me continually to play with them and I do of course.

Up +++ tweeting and pinning

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on October 07, 2013:

@howtofindaman

Very true

howtofindaman on October 07, 2013:

Anything is a toy, I agree.

Look at the people who created 'pen spinning' as a hobby while they were bored in the school class room.

THey developed hand dexterity from spinning their pencils and pens!

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on June 30, 2013:

@jpcmc

you sure are a happy and proud daddy. congrats

JP Carlos from Quezon CIty, Phlippines on June 29, 2013:

I'm proud of my little angel peachpurple.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on June 29, 2013:

@jpcmc

Glad to hear that your 2 yr old girl is an active child.

JP Carlos from Quezon CIty, Phlippines on June 28, 2013:

I have a 2 year old daughter and I just can't stop her from exploring...why should I? I see her become more creative and imaginative. Her physical, cognitive and emotional skills grow exponentially when she explores the world.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on June 13, 2013:

@pinto

thanks for dropping by. That is a good idea to share gifts to children. A kind heart soul you are indeed.

Subhas from New Delhi, India on June 13, 2013:

Hi peachpurple! Very useful and informative hub. I always make it a point to gift a few sets of Lego to the underprivileged child every year.

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on April 10, 2013:

@indian

Thanks for y comments. You have kids?

Indian Chef from New Delhi India on April 10, 2013:

Peach purple very inpformative hub. liked it

peachy (author) from Home Sweet Home on October 01, 2012:

@teachablemoments

Thanks for reading my hub. I find that parents control too much on their children, almost everything. Hence, parents should let loose when children play with toys. Children Imagination are awesome!

TeachableMoments from California on September 30, 2012:

Play is the most important aspect of a child's life. They learn about the world through play. Thanks for spreading the word. Great hub.

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