Creative Child

Why Parents Should Play with Their Kids

by Sarah Lyons

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Playing is great stress relief

Once we have set aside time in our day to allow for play, we often find ourselves smiling and laughing more often with our children. After experiencing this, we can feel some of the day’s tension lift. Playing is a great way to relieve stress, especially when it includes physical activity. Getting out in the backyard and playing catch, taking a walk to the park, or exploring nature are great ways to reduce stress while playing with and bonding with your child. Playtime can be a great stress relief to children as well. It gives them a chance to act out their frustration and worries in a safe environment.

Playing develops skills

It’s no surprise that interacting with others helps your child develop their social skills but there are many other ways play aids your child’s development. Playing catch develops hand-eye coordination and gross motor skills. Pretend play, such as playing kitchen or doing a puppet show, helps them learn about the world around them. Stressful situations can be acted out through play and can help kids learn to deal with them. Coloring, crafts, and building blocks develops their fine motor skills and gross motor skills are developed through playing at the park, riding bikes along trails, or building an obstacle course and testing it out. Play also builds their self-esteem and helps them understand their role in the world. Parents can help guide their children through these learning processes while teaching them how to play with others and the benefits of living an active lifestyle.

We live in a busy society that undervalues and leaves little time for play. Parents must be intentional when it comes to making time to interact and play with their children. The to-do list will always be there but our children grow up in what seems like a blink of an eye. Taking the time to play with your child is worth it for both of you.

 

Sarah Lyons is a stay at home wife and mother of six children, including 18 month old triplets. Using creative consequences with her kids has improved their behavior and encourages healthy relationships with each other.

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