The American Academic of Pediatrics (2007) calls “Play” – “the work of children”. Literally, it translates to mean that the occupation of young children is PLAY. In another words, they should be occupied by play. Play is a key facilitator of child speech and language development. So, let’s explore more about play and child development.
How Play Helps your child
Child development specialists and Pediatrician strongly recommend engaging children in play because it is through play that children learn how to interact in their others in their environment, discover their likes and dislikes and learn more about themselves. Play also promotes thinking (cognitive), motor, speech, language, and social-emotional skills (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2007). Yogman and colleagues (Paediatrics, 2018) stressed that “developmentally appropriate play with parents and peers is a singular opportunity to promote the social-emotional, cognitive, speech and language, and self-regulation skills that build executive function and a prosocial brain.”
There are many different stages of play.
Play evolves over time and become more complex. Language development is closely linked to play development and stages. As play becomes more complex, so does a child’s speech and language skills. However, at any stage, parents can play an important role in helping to facilitate growth of language skills.
It is essential to engage your child in play. Help your child to develop real play skills. In the contemporary world, children are increasingly engaged electronic games. While there may be benefits to playing electronic games, traditional play activities have been shown to facilitate language development in children while the former is found to have negative impact on language development.
If your child’s play is not developing, you can help.
It is important to invest in your child. Set aside time to play with your child. Help your child engage with you and his / her toys or surrounds. Stagnation of play development is often a sign of underlying difficulties
For more information about play and language development, click on this link.
If your child has speech delay…
may we suggest you find out more about your child’s play development stages. Engage in play. During play, comment about what you are doing. Avoid asking your child questions like “what’s this?”. Instead, say “teddy eat”, or “drink milk”.
Adults may also like to comment on what the child says. For example, if your child says “milk”, you could comment and add “nice warm milk”, or “yummy milk”.
Our team of speech therapists are trained to execute Play Intervention to help children learn play skills and develop their language along the way. We can also help with your child’s speech and language delay.
Call us to learn more.