10 Ways to Get the Most Out of Playing With Your Children
Playtime with your kids is so important! How can you maximize that time with them?
- Take time every day to sit down and really play with your children. This can be doing literally any game that they love – it’s quality time no matter what!
- Avoid toys that are too busy. A simple box of blocks can be so much fun and so engaging for children. You don’t need anything fancy!
- Encourage the social language of games in addition to playing them (i.e., “who is next”, “who won”, “be a good sport”, “who came in second”). Playing is a child’s learning.
- Use sabotage with really young children to encourage communication and conversational turn taking.
- Organization is key. Use plastic containers to store toys. Invest in jumbo Zip-Loc bags to keep pieces of toys and games together. This way, cleaning up after playtime won’t seem like such a task, and wont’t take any time away from the actual play.
- Water play is a favorite for most kids. Get a clear container with a lid, fill it with water, and you have found a new way to play with toys you already have!
- Don’t think toys have to look “educational” for your children to learn from them. You can encourage use of language, vocabulary, and concepts in any activity. Narrate what your child is doing to increase their vocabulary.
- Limit media time with young children. If your children are really motivated by it, try your best to be beside them facilitating language and learning while they are engaged with devices/tv, etc.
- Imaginative and pretend play are so important. Think about scenarios that you can play out with your kids. For example, going to the grocery store, going to the doctor, eating a restaurant. Have them follow directions (1, 2, or 3 step) while you do this.
10. Rotate toys in and out of your children’s playrooms and toy boxes. Store a toy away for a few months and bring it back out and they will think it is brand new!