Playing isn't just fun - it's vital for your child. In fact, playing freely is better than anything else they could be doing.

Playing is vital Besides being fun, it’s important work for a child This may sound like an exaggeration, but it’s actually through play that children get to know themselves and the world around them Best of all is when your child gets to play freely As a parent, you might sometimes feel you ought to take your toddler to more activities, organise more things to do and offer guidance here and there But it’s actually the other way round The more free play, the better

Here are some of the benefits of play:

• Playing lets your child take charge and be a leader They finally get to make the decisions
• Playing teaches children about context, cause and effect They get to explore and discover a whole bunch of things such as how things work, relationships, values, customs and ethics
• Playing builds confidence
• Playing develops social skills
• Playing helps children express and understand their feelings such as joy, anger and fear, and discover how their feelings affect others
• Playing helps language development
• Playing stimulates creativity and imagination
• Playing helps develop basic and advanced motor skills

The importance of playing freely can’t be stressed enough It’s the most important job in the world – and the most enjoyable one

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