CHILD DEVELOPMENT THROUGH PLAY
Children recognize self, nature, other humans, and objects through play. Hakan Yıldız, Lecturer at Vocational School of Health Services, Izmir University of Economics, pointed that play, which was a major part of a child’s life, had a significant role in shaping the child’s future.
Yıldız, who stated that children learned through play, said, “The best way to learn for a child is through interactive plays. Play is a significant task for a child. It is a mirror to their creativity and their desires. It helps them become highly motivated, outgoing, independent individuals.”
Yıldız reported that play had a significant role in entertaining and educating the child as well as in development; and children who played games grew up healthier. Yıldız stated the following about the importance of play for child development:
“Play helps young children to learn and develop their physical, social, emotional and intellectual skills through doing and talking. Blood flow and heart rate increases especially during active games, and heart pumps oxygen rich blood. The child sweats out the toxins. Play also develops child’s co-ordination, control, and movement skills. It prolongs the attention span.”
‘Expresses Emotions Freely’
Yıldız stated that play helped children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others, have confidence in their own abilities, and express their emotions freely. “Play helps children to have empathy and care about others. They also develop their gender identity. They learn to socialize and collaborate. Play helps children learn by discovery. They gain skills such as deductive reasoning, communicating, speaking, decision making, thinking, perceiving, problem solving,” said Yıldız.
‘Parents Need to Take Play Seriously’
Yıldız reported that play should not be seen as leisure time activity only, that children learned many rules during play. He said that playing outside in our day almost abolished, and children were taken from courses to courses by their ambitious parents. Yıldız made the following recommendations to parents:
“Parents should take plays, games, toys, play time and place very seriously since they play a major role in child development. They should create an opportunity, time and place for their children to play. They should respect the child during playtime, get involved as much as possible, and take the play, game seriously as they accompany their children.”
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