Happy Kids, Happy Parents
By Jennifer Kenneth, guest blogger
Happy Kids, Happy Parents: Why Traditional Play Is Important for Families
Playtime is an essential part of a child’s developmental process. They need to run, explore and even have games where parents can assist them in learning. So it’s good that modern parents are now more hands-on with their children than their counterparts in 1965. This particular fact is from the analysis of the Pew Research Center. With technology playing a big factor in the sort of play families indulge in now, why is traditional play continuously important?
Shaping Motor Skills
One of the things that traditional play can help with is the motor skill development of children. Learning to grasp things with hands, stack objects, and even learn how to manipulate certain types of mechanical toys are all conducive to motor skill learning. Children who learn better motor skills through traditional play are able to shape their balance and coordination. Perfect examples of these would be moving tokens or throwing dice down properly while playing board games.
Building Social Skills
More children in today’s world have less opportunity to be kids and play. They, instead, need to adapt to roles befitting adults. This startling info was the result of a study by the American Academy of Pediatrics. So, in essence, we have adults who never learned how to sufficiently handle and process emotions; a bad direction for our society as a whole. Traditional play within the family setting enables children to explore the gamut of their emotions in a safe and guided environment. Games that involve winning or losing and even cooperation like in Cahoots are particularly helpful in helping kids grow emotionally.
Growing Family Ties
The best part about “traditional play” is that families can use it to grow their relationships with each other. Children who have parents that spend quality with them are less likely to get involved in risky behavior according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Parents can use traditional play to establish healthy lines of communication with their children. Simple games like tabletop board games, playing pretend through roleplaying card games, or even going outside help kids become comfortable with expressing their thoughts. They also learn to trust that their parents have their best interests at heart.
It is the job of parents to help their children grow and develop into well-adjusted young adults. Traditional Play is arguably the best method which has positive effects that last well into adulthood. This is why traditional play will continue to have an integral part in the future of healthy families.