In July Hasbro gaming sent us a lovely campaign to pledge along with a pinkie promise to make time to play with our children.
Monopoly South Africa interviewed a few kids and the biggest result after being asked what they would do to get their parents to play was that parents realised children wanted them to engage and play with them more.
How many of us parents actually set aside time to play with the kids?
Research shows that learning through play is an important part of a child’s development.
Through play children learn many different skills they will need in their life such as:
- Problem solving
- learning cause and effect
- Learning how to play with others through compromise, conflict resolution and sharing
- Development of fine and gross motor skills
- Nurturing their creativity and imagination
- Discovering their independence
- Building a positive self-esteem
We took the pledge and I promised that this would be more than just another campaign for us. Whilst I spend a lot of time with Hamish it is also getting easier as he gets older, to allow him to play by himself whilst I work.
So, I promised to keep my pledge to him.
So far, we’ve had good days and not so good days. But in all of them I’ve tried to remain totally present and engaged in the activity we are doing.
Whether we are busy with Playdoh, a game or reading.
Some of the things I have changed to incorporate more time to play in my own busy schedule is :
- Firstly to be aware of when I’m on my phone and to put the phone away when we are playing or reading.
- To limit screen time for our entire family.
- To not watch that last last episode and to rather use this time to bake or cook or read or play a game.
- To have regular picnics
- To include Hamish in the kitchen making a game out of cooking
- To have monthly meals or braai with our entire family
- To stop working from 5pm to 8pm when he goes to bed
- To play board games
- To have regular family outings
- To make Sundays family only days and focus on play and togetherness
- To make shopping a game or at least interesting if I cant shop online
Play is an important part of our childrens learning as is engaging with us. Because of this I pinkie promise to keep pledging to make more time to play.