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The Role of Play in a Child’s Preschool Years

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In preschool, kids have to learn some skills to prepare them for elementary school. Preschool boosts a child’s academic focus and play maintains an essential role.

Kids are naturally playful. As they explore their senses they start to play by themselves and then later with others. In preschool, kids consider playing as their work. If they learn and play with joy, they get a positive experience and learn things positively.

Children Growth: The Role of Teachers

As a child develops, he will be involved in a more sophisticated play. Up until the age of two, a kid plays by himself and rarely interacts with other kids. Soon after, he begins to watch other kids play; however, doesn’t join in. When a child reaches 2 ½ to 3 years old, he begins to play sitting next to another kid, usually somebody who has similar interests. Using language, this shifts to the start of cooperative play. To facilitate this, it is imperative to set up space for at least two bodies and help kids find the words to express their needs or questions.

Between the age of four and five, a preschooler at Hilltop Children’s Center discovers that he shares the same interests and looks for children like him. He talks, strategizes, and negotiates in order to develop play scenes and work together to achieve mutual goals.

In the development of the play, a teacher in a preschool or child care near Liberty Hill, TX plays a crucial role. He has to organize the environment and use his curriculum in which guides him as he plans for ways the kids will engage in play.

Kinds of Play

Below are the categories for children’s play.

  • Manipulative play. This includes handling and holding small toys usually used for building objects. However, this is also found in characters, beads, and puzzles.
  • Dramatic. This is a fantasy directed play that involves dressing up in costumes, using toys to represent story characters, assuming roles as characters, pretending to take on adult roles and creating imaginary settings.
  • Creative play. This involves the use of art materials like clay, pencils, glue, markers, and paint. This kind of play is focused on the use of the materials instead of the results.
  • Physical play. This is the use of the whole body in activities with hoops, play structures, jump ropes, balls, and bikes.

Important Benefits of Play

Play helps kids develop skills that they will use in their school years.

  • Build Language Skills. Cooperative play helps kids to build language skills. A child’s success depends upon his patience and ability to explain himself. A teacher repeats the words that kids say in order to help others understand. Also, he teaches words on the objects that the children are interested in handling.
  • Build motor skills. Fine and gross motor development arise through play. If children play outdoors and feel supported and comfortable, they will be motivated to take on new challenges which help them build motor skills. Fine motor skills like handling small objects let them practice the use of their fingers and hands. In turn, this builds the coordination and strength necessary for writing skills.
  • Builds a sense of confidence. For preschoolers, it is hard work to build blocks or perform some tricks on a play structure. Such experiences are acknowledged by teachers by articulating the observation and allowing the preschoolers to absorb such accomplishments again.
  • Develop an awareness of differences in people. Negotiating, listening, and compromising are difficult for kids between 4 and 5 years old. While kids at this age cannot think beyond their own needs, they develop awareness of how people around them differ from each other by helping with other kids. This preschool experience offers a foundation to learn techniques to communicate with peers and solve problems. Also, play helps kids in building positive leadership qualities especially for those naturally inclined to direct; however, need to learn ways to control their impulses.
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