is an important part of the developmental process. Through
play children learn about the world around themhow
things sound when they are banged or dropped or poured,
if one thing fits inside another, how things work. Play
is a route to cognitive, physical, emotional, and social
development. It helps children develop curiosity, practice
motor tasks, and learn empathy and understanding of
the behavior of others. Play enables children to be
active participants in the world. They take action and
make things happen.
most children, play is spontaneous and experimental.
It progresses from random to more purposeful. Eventually,
it becomes imaginative and problem solving. It begins
alone or with an adult, then becomes parallel with other
children, and then social. Your child might be zooming
right through these developmental stages or you might
have to intervene to help your child progress. Either
way, we hope the ideas, tools, and techniques in this
section will be of help. Many more ideas for movement
and games appear in the Sports,
Games and Leisure Time section of this website.