You would think everyone would know this, but parents sometimes do not comprehend the importance of play. They get caught up in keeping jobs and schedules, completely overlooking the fact that their kids need to play outdoors when the weather permits or indoors.
According to the American Association of Pediatrics, the media diet for kids must be designed and monitored with care by the parents. Kids spend an enormous amount of time in front of screens – TV, computers and other devices. Parents feel they are safer when inside a house and playing a game rather than actually going outside and playing. With busy lifestyles parents also find it difficult to take their kids out to play and monitor them.
It was not so just a few decades ago, when kids had to be pestered to get home. In fact the inventiveness of kids at designing toys comes through in books and movies like ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ where the kids from the Great Depression era do just that. This improves imagination and lets kids do a lot of free thinking.
In fact kids under two years need to spend more time with people than screens for the development of their brains. The physical aspect of play is also very important. Exercise is great for kids to build stamina and strength. Hunger is built naturally and fussiness over food is reduced.
In fact in many of the online games, heroes have gone from the colosseum into a mobile game! The interest in such spectator games has not reduced, just changed. Sport is wonderful for spectators, but it cannot be compared to actual play. The thrill of participation is something else.
One aspect of play, which is rarely spoken off is what kids learn from games. They learn balance – the healthy attitude of you lose some, and you win some. Play teaches kids in a demonstrable fashion about how practice can improve skill. Kids learn to take defeat well – they move on instead of letting loss bring them down. Sportsmanship is a skill that helps on and off the field.