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Importance of Play among Children

Updated on January 26, 2012

Play is very important in the holistic development of a child, that is physical, intellectual, social and emotional development. Upon reading this article, you are going to find more appeal in the saying, 'all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.'

Child play is important in a number of ways. This article briefly outlines the role of play in child’s growth and development.

  1. Play helps in developing children's personalities and a positive sense of self and helps then to realize their potential and experience success;
  2. Play unlocks children's creativity and imagination, and develops reading, thinking and problem solving skills as well as motor skills;
  3. Through play, children process and manage emotions, and understand and interpret the world around them;
  4. Play helps children learn relationship and social skills, and develop values and ethics;
  5. Parent-child play provides important opportunities for parent-child bonding. The most authentic play experiences are child-initiated, freely chosen, and child powered. Such play is pleasurable and fun, active and mind absorbing;
  6. Play is vital in noting the development in a child. For instance, if a child was to be observed building a tower of blocks, his/her competence and coordination could be evaluated, cognitive functions such as cause and effect, how he/she expresses feelings such as frustration or success, and even social skills can also be noted;
  7. Play allows children to make important connections about what they know. Play also enables adults to understand better how very young children think, before they are able to put those thoughtful connections into their own spoken words. If properly coordinated, uninterrupted provision enables young children to make choices and to become intensely involved and absorbed in a given constructive activity.


Parents are called upon to spend quality time with their kids to learn from them what they cannot communicate verbally. Parent-child play is a moment of bonding, of communication, of instilling values. Through play, there is much more that parents can learn about the growth and development of their kids. Teachers are also encouraged to have a continual-helping- presence during play. It is during play time that teachers can pass good values among kids. Teaching through play is also encouraged for effective teaching and learning.


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    • Esmeowl12 profile image

      Cindy A. Johnson 5 years ago from Sevierville, TN

      Play is extremely important. Unfortunately, in most schools, academics (while definitely valuable) is emphasized over play. Thanks for an informative hub.