On this last day of the conference Teacher Ria Tirazona of Playschool International, is providing a session on the different learning styles and strategies to understand and appreciate children with special needs. What made me sit up and listen was her presentation on the essentials of play. Here are my notes from her discussion --
Play stimulates the brain. With out play, higher thinking is impossible to achieve.
Play encourages holistic development as it covers mental and cognitive challenges; emotional and social responses; and physical experiences that contribute to good health.
There are many kinds of play - free play, guided play and directed play.
Children go through stages of play - solitary play, onlooker play, parallel play, associative play.
Responses to the different kinds and stages of play is an indicator of the child's current mental, emotional, social and developmental maturity.
Play is THERAPY.
I look back at my own childhood and recall the amount of play I did. It's never too late to catch up on lost play time.