We all know the importance of play. There is no denying that play is children’s work, the foundation of their learning, instrumental to their development and central to their creativity. And although we all want to encourage our children to play and be creative whenever possible, if you struggle to play, it can all be enough to make you hold your hands up in defeat. While our children can relish in their creativity, spending hours on just one task, this is often lost as we grow.
We aren’t perfect parents, none of us are, and sometimes we struggle too, this is a fact. So how do we spend time with our children when we ourselves struggle with the creativity of play?
We list some great ways to spend time with you children below.
Go for a coffee date and take an activity.
This is a great way to spend one on one time with children. Take their favourite activity along and completely fill their cups.
Go for a bush walk at their pace.
Getting out in to nature will be restorative for everyone, encouraging healthy habits, a love for nature and a great way to burn off some of their energy before bedtime!
Do a puzzle.
Problem solving skills. Enough said.
Watch a movie of their choice.
A great way to cuddle, chat and relax!
Cook a meal together.
An interactive opportunity to teach your children a life skill and get dinner ready at the same time. Winning!
Let them tinker.
Giving your children the opportunity to tinker with you, trying to fix, mend or improve something will allow them to problem solve and learn how things work.
Build something together.
A great way to share knowledge and encourage teamwork. Building something together allows our children to be the expert in the relationship, allowing them to teach us something new. This will grow their confidence and self-esteem.
Grow some plants.
Growing plants with children will engage all their senses, enhance their fine motor skills, teaches them about how things grow, and encourages healthy eating. It is something the whole family can do together.
Take up a new hobby together.
Taking up a new hobby can increase the connection and bond between you and your child, encourage an increase in knowledge, sharing of information and creating memories.
Visit the elderly.
Encouraging your children to spend time or to do things for others allows them to develop their emotional intelligence and empathy skills, confidence and self-esteem. All great skills we want our babies to develop!
So, if you too struggle to play Lego for hours, or board games are just not you’re thing, think outside the box and try something from our list above.
BY DOMINIQUE BEN & MIM DART
Dominique is a mama to 2 boys and co-founder of MummyCon.