As busy multi-tasking parents, we often expect our children to entertain themselves while we work, cook, or clean the house. Imaginative play isn’t just a time-filler for kids though, it’s how they learn. Children explore their world and their own feelings through play. It’s also very important to their physical and emotional wellbeing. So no matter how tired you are at the end of a long day or how action-packed your weekend is, make time to play with your children to enjoy the following life-long benefits.
#1. Playing Creates Bonding Opportunities
Children and parents or grandparents can build a nurturing and trusting relationship when they play together. Spending time together doing a fun activity creates long-lasting memories. Children learn healthy competition, problem-solving, and communication skills from playing games with the adults in their lives. It also shows your child that you are important to them and that you enjoy spending time with them.
It’s also very important for children and grandparents to bond and spend time together. Children with involved grandparents have proven to be more secure, happier, and smarter because of those bonds. Grandparents have a lot of wisdom to share with their grandkids and providing opportunities for them to play together should be a high priority. It’s also great for grandpa and grandma’s health as well, keeping them active and their memories sharp.
#2. Imaginative Play Builds Skills
It’s no surprise that a child learns best through games and toys. You can learn a lot from hands-on, enjoyable activities. Sensory play teaches children about shapes, color, texture, and smell. Games can teach problem-solving, leadership, and social skills. Imaginative play can really expand their critical and creative thinking skills and help them explore complex emotions and situations in a safe environment. Some imaginative play can even build gross motor skills and provide physical activity as well.
Building a fort, a castle, or a series of tunnels to play in, combines imaginative play with basic engineering and gross motor skills. A time-honored game, fort building has been around through generations and is something parents and even grandparents can delight in as they remember their own fort-building days. This is only of the only toys you can build and then play inside.
#3. Playing Is A Fun Way To Reduce Stress
We live in an ever-evolving world full of ups and downs. Children absorb the feelings and tensions in their home and need an outlet for stress just as much as grownups do. Make time for smiles and laughter to naturally reduce stress for your family members of all ages by playing games and building forts together. When we grow up, our lives often revolve around work and we start undervaluing the importance of relaxing and playing. Not only do you and your child have fun when you play together, but you’re teaching your children that making time to enjoy life is important.