The Importance of Play

To attend the 6 weekly FREE Play Master classes to begin on 9th November 2020. Please join the FREE Facebook group www.facebook.com/groups/ambitiousadopters. You will receive information, training and community as a member. We welcome foster carers also to join the group and join these sessions.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Play is so important to child development that it has been recognized by the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights as a right of every child (1) Play gives children the chance to build their confidence and learning. Children need the opportunity to play with parents and their carer’s, to play alone and with peers. It is generally accepted that play influences development in each stage of a child’s life.

Children learn social relationships through play, they learn to share, to empathise, to understand rules, and to work together. A child’s learning is developed, by involvement in play, the ability to think, concentrate, problem solve, and master language. They can also learn negotiation skills during play.

Play also supports children’s emotional development, giving them an opportunity to let off steam, to vocalise, express anxiety, to reduce any feelings of anger, inadequacy, frustration and build children’s feelings of being in control. Play helps children learn to be successful and experience pleasure.

In mammals including humans, researcher Panksepp (2) suggests that they are born with fundamental instincts which will assist them in survival. Alongside these habits there are a range of primitive systems, with more sophisticated social and emotional systems which emerge at appropriate times.

Play is a way for the child to make sense of their surroundings, the family environment and will often explore the gender expectations, some of which can be impacted by what they see around them.

Children who are waiting and placed for adoption will have experienced trauma, regardless of how old they were when they were removed. Some may not have ever experienced free play, in birth families. Play is also very much impacted on by cultural norms. Cultural traditions, gender expectations and social relationships will shape play, childhood expectations and the fabric of their lives.

Therefore it is important that adopters encourage play with their children and Yoni Ejo and Keeley Craw, Play Therapist will be presenting a series of free master classes for adopters and carers to give ideas of how to use play to build better relationships, confidence as well as fun.

Play Therapy is mainly used with children but the playful and creative techniques can also be applied to therapeutic work with adults. For the last six years as well as holding a clinical role Keeley has been a manager and area manager for a charity that provides a school based counselling service.

We want to help you as adopters and foster carers to be confident in positive play and craft activities that you will find make a big difference in your relationship with your child, if done regularly, say 3 times a week.

To attend the 6 weekly FREE Play Master classes to begin on 9th November 2020. Please join the FREE Facebook group www.facebook.com/groups/ambitiousadopters. You will receive information, training and community as a member. We welcome foster carers also to join the group and join these sessions.

You will definitely get more out of the time if you can attend live and interact with the other adopters but sessions will also be available within the group later as recordings.

We are confident you will really get a lot out of the session so we look forward to meeting you then!  Yoni and Keeley

Sources

  1. Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Convention on the Rights of the Child. General Assembly Resolution 44/25 of 20 November 1989.
  2. Panksepp. J (1998) affective neuroscience, the foundation of human and animal emotions. New York, oxford uni press

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.