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happylittlegems wellbeing fact of the day:

65% of parents say they only play occasionally with their children

This is probably not that surprising as we all lead very busy lives, but it's important to take time to play with our children. After all, they really do 'grow up quickly' and there is so much they can gain from this quality interaction.


happylittlegems top tips about play:

  • Children don't instinctively know what to do with toys (especially when they're very young) model how to play with them, model conversations, role-play, stories etc. Time dedicated to this when they're young will help you reap the benefits as they grow up (they know how to play and can do it independently or with siblings/friends).

  • As an adult playing with a child you will model good playing, sharing, politeness, varied language etc. this all has huge benefits to your child, after all, they copy everything you do! Play helps develop the motor skills and cognitive ability to deal with future tasks.

  • While playing with your child you are helping develop their social and self-control skills.

  • Rough and tumble (obviously without real physical hurt) is an important part of their play. It's important to not let them always win as you need to build their resilience.

  • Playing board games are great as children learn to take turns, share and win or lose.

  • You have more life experience and more knowledge so you are able to widen children's imagination.

  • Fathers may participate in more physical play with their children, while mothers may choose more instructive and verbal play. Both forms are important for a child's development.

  • There are benefits for both you and your child. While playing you are bonding and releasing the hormone oxytocin which is great for reducing stress and aiding the 'feel good' factor.

For more child wellbeing advice please contact info@happylittlegems.com

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