3 Ways Playgrounds are More than Just a Place to Have Fun
For many of us, it is very easy to overlook the importance of play and playgrounds in the growth and development of your children. Aside from helping your child have fun, playing is also a basic ingredient to ensure that your child is fully developed. This is because it contributes to their emotional, social, cognitive, and physical growth. In most cases, a playground is the best place where your child can learn developmental tasks such as exploration and risk-taking. A good playground should promote different forms of play. Therefore, it becomes important to understand the role that playgrounds perform in the growth and development of your child.
As an outdoor learning environment, a playground is meant to help children flourish in all aspects. However, there are many factors that negatively influence the prevalence of outdoor play. These include unsafe neighborhoods, exaggerated academic standards, and educational accountability, as well as excessive computer and TV use. All these can reduce the time available for play. What many parents do not understand is that it also constrains the effective growth and development of your child. Because your child has a safe space to exert their energy, they will be more comfortable to interact with their peers and have fun. Apart from this, playgrounds also have the following benefits:
1. Increasing their Self-Awareness
When having fun and playing around, your child has the opportunity to learn more about themselves. This is because adequate play tests the emotional and physical capabilities of your child. The reason is that your child will learn how to push their limits, and find out how well they can respond to situations involving conflict and other emotions.
Outdoor play is also good because your child learns how to correlate with the natural environment. This puts them in a good position to acknowledge the natural order, and how we as humans fit into it. It will ultimately influence and build up their relationship with the natural environment and objects in it.
2. Improved Health
This is probably the biggest advantage of having fun outdoors. It gives your child the opportunity to exercise, improve their physical fitness, and get more fresh air. Different forms of physical activity will contribute in some way towards improved emotional and mental wellbeing, as well as create a disposition for proper environmental care from a young age. This will also reduce the risk of prevalent lifestyle diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and hypertension, among others. It also gives your child the opportunity to enjoy their childhood.
3. Creating a Well-rounded Individual
Outdoor play can improve the probability of your child developing into a well-rounded adult. This is because it helps prepare them on how to interact with others and develop social and close interpersonal relationships. In turn, they are able to learn the basic facets of human relationships such as compromise and cooperation.
It also improves cognition and mental clarity. This is because playgrounds offer a wide range of physical activities that your child can use to decompress after a hard day of academic learning. It brings about faster mental rejuvenation by releasing ant pent-up frustration or energy. In many situations, educators will consider outdoor play as a fundamental element of academic learning.