One of the movies I grew up watching was Mary Poppins with Julie Andrews as the incredible fun-loving, yet proper Mary Poppins. I was absolutely convinced a spoonful of sugar would help any foul tasting medicine go down, even if my Mom was not so convinced! As I think back on my childhood, I can remember the freedom I had to go outside, play, and explore. Today, I want to focus on the idea of play in children’s lives. If we are ever going to connect with and help our kids become well-adjusted adults, it starts with getting back to the basics.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has done extensive research (found here) on the developmental effects of play on kids. Basically, children’s brains develop by learning about their world through exploring around them, modeling roles they see adults doing, and growing their imagination through free, undirected play. Equally important is for adults to join in the play with the kids in their lives. Allowing kids to have the time and space to do all of this is critical to them becoming whole-person healthy people.
So, from a practical standpoint, what can this look like in our everyday, often crazy busy lives? Here’s a few ideas:
I'm JoEllen and I'm so glad you're here. Thanks for visiting and let me know how I can best serve you!