Is your child pestering you to let them go to the playground to play? Well, to be fair summer vacation has always meant playtime. Only not this time. With the coronavirus scare, the government has advised strict social distancing, implying that all people (kids included) stay six feet apart from each other at all times. Outdoor games, especially contact sport for that matter, are ideally not meant to be played in times of crisis.
But this global pandemic has left parents unsure about what to do with their child’s free time. Play is the very foundation of childhood development and therefore fundamental to a child’s wellbeing. But outdoor play is out of the question. So what now?
Well, you can help your child by planning fun indoor activities for them. Here are 5 fun activities with developmental benefits that will keep your child indoors and teach him/her to learn through play:
1. Water Play
Encouraging water play enables children to experiment in a safe environment with basic concepts such as volume. Additionally, water play even teaches them the consequences of actions. What’s more, it develops hand-eye coordination and physical strength, thereby making water play a favourite.
2. Play Dough
Playdough is not only fun but also has immense potential for learning. It strengthens fingers thereby preparing your child for a lifetime of writing. Additionally, your child fine motor skills, creativity, and hand-eye coordination. A fun tip: Add some beads or any different texture like shimmer to the dough for a fine-motor exercise for extra play-value.
3. Dress-Up and Role Play
Let the children go crazy and pick a bunch of dressing-up clothes to match their play props like say a doctor’s kit, and watch their imaginations run wild. So you can watch your child take the form of their budding aspiration. Playing dressing-up allows children to begin to make sense of the adult world, roles, and interests, as well as boosting social interaction. What’s more, dressing-up helps to reinforce the self-care aspects of self-dressing which is essential for primary school life.
4. Doll and Character Play
And this is not just limited to the girls! Providing characters in the form of mini-figures and dolls, helps your children develop their social play. Conversing using a doll, encourages imagination and the expression (and labelling) of feelings.
5. Drawing and Painting
Throw in some pencils, paint, crayons and let your child run wild with their imagination and creativity. Paints and drawing tools allow them to experience their world in a sensory way and develop self-expression. Additionally it also develops pre-writing skills. Furthermore, it’s an invitation to learn about colours, mixing, and good-old tidying up!
Play is the foundation of childhood development in terms of language, emotional intelligence and regulation, creativity, and intellectual reasoning. Certain activities have more play and learning potential than others and are worth establishing in their own right. Encourage indoor play with these simple and fun activities that will keep your child occupied and ensure the learning process goes on.