‘All children and young people need to play; it is a biological, psychological and social necessity that is fundamental to healthy development’.
Biologically children have always needed to play, it is essential for brain development and to learn personal, social, emotional and survival skills. This is evident in the animal kingdom; lion cubs play fight to test their strength, baby monkeys are extremely inquisitive, enjoy exploring their surroundings and are very playful. Without these traits they would not learn the skills they need to survive. It is the same with children, the more experiences they gain through plan, the more life skills they will acquire.
Psychologically play is therapeutic; it eases stress and tension and helps children to relax aiding their emotional wellbeing. When a child has been in school they need some ‘down time’ to play and discover themselves, this also helps them process the day’s events. Children use play to make sense of the world around them, it can help them solve problems and learn new skills.
Socially play helps children strengthen their bond with others, learn social skills and how to fit in with society. Play is an effective way of children learning about their own heritage and culture, how to behave and what their culture expects of them. It is also a way of learning about other