Why Playing Alone Is Essential for kids

 

10 simple reasons why free, unstructured play is so important for children!

Video taken from the channel: Mumma Diaries by Amruta Ram


 

Mayo Clinic Minute: Why kids need to play

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Importance Of Playing With Your Child

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Children speaking about the importance of play

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How to get children to play Alone | Encouraging Independent play.

Video taken from the channel: AmyBeingMum


 

MONTESSORI AT HOME: Independent Play

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How to Encourage Independent Play

Video taken from the channel: The Parenting Junkie


Why Playing Alone Is Important for Children Teaches Children to Have Fun Independently. Kids who play by themselves learn to have fun on their own. They don’t count It Brings out Their Imagination.

You may already feel like your child is full of imagination. Just wait until you step Develops. Social interaction is a necessity for children, but they also benefit from spending time alone. Independent play, when your child occupies himself with toys, games or self-guided activities, is a valuable skill and no less essential than group play. Although playing alone is important, parents should allow their child to play with other children as well.

This is the time where parents can also play with their child. Group play helps children develop their social skills which would be very useful. 1. Improved motor skills. Outdoor play has also been shown to leave kids with more advanced motor skills than their “indoor” peers, including coordination, balance and agility.

Kids who play outside are more likely to enjoy activities like walking, running and biking. All children should have time for play. It is the building blocks for establishing confidence, coping abilities, flexibility and positive interactions with others.

Through play, your child will be able to apply these skills as they grow into a young adult. Learning through play is one of the most important ways children learn and develop. Friedrich Froebel, a German educator who created the concept of the ‘kindergarten’, believed that “play is the highest expression of human development in childhood, for it alone is the free expression of what is in a child’s soul.”.

Play is instinctive and not just for human children – all young mammals play. This shows how important it is to development. Research has shown that the reason children grow so slowly and are dependent for so long is because the brain is taking so much of the body’s resources, leaving little available for physical growth. Solitary or independent play is common in children between the ages of 2 and 3 years old, but even much older children enjoy playing alone at times.

With this type of play, children learn how to entertain themselves at an appropriate physical and cognitive developmental level. Researchers suggest that play is a central ingredient in learning, allowing children to imitate adult behaviors, practice motor skills, process emotional events, and learn much about their world. One thing play is not, is frivolous.

Recent research confirms what Piaget 3 always knew, that “play is the work of childhood.”. Below are just some of the ways children learn through play: When children play, they are developing skills in all areas of development: cognitive, physical, communication, and Play promotes healthy habits by actively engaging children in the world around them. This counteracts issues many.

List of related literature:

Some children may prefer to play alone because they can be in control of what happens and can create what they have in mind without interference.

“Child Development” by Laura E. Levine, Joyce Munsch
from Child Development
by Laura E. Levine, Joyce Munsch
SAGE Publications, 2013

Having time to play alone in this way can help children’s feelings of self-reliance.

“Planning Play and the Early Years” by Penny Tassoni, Karen Hucker
from Planning Play and the Early Years
by Penny Tassoni, Karen Hucker
Pearson Education Limited, 2005

Children may play alone, and as their social comfort increases in the play environment, they often progress to playing with others close by.

“Psychoeducational Assessment of Preschool Children” by Bruce Bracken, Richard Nagle
from Psychoeducational Assessment of Preschool Children
by Bruce Bracken, Richard Nagle
Taylor & Francis, 2017

Because play is also enjoyable, experiences and environments involving play become associated with people, places, and things children enjoy.

“The SAGE Encyclopedia of Contemporary Early Childhood Education” by Donna Couchenour, J. Kent Chrisman
from The SAGE Encyclopedia of Contemporary Early Childhood Education
by Donna Couchenour, J. Kent Chrisman
SAGE Publications, 2016

For example, some children need to be in the center of all activities, whereas some prefer to be observers or to play alone.

“Journey Across the Life Span: Human Development and Health Promotion” by Elaine U Polan, Daphne R Taylor
from Journey Across the Life Span: Human Development and Health Promotion
by Elaine U Polan, Daphne R Taylor
F.A. Davis Company, 2019

Most children are capable of playing alone if a companion is not available.

“Encyclopedia of Special Education: A Reference for the Education of Children, Adolescents, and Adults with Disabilities and Other Exceptional Individuals” by Cecil R. Reynolds, Elaine Fletcher-Janzen
from Encyclopedia of Special Education: A Reference for the Education of Children, Adolescents, and Adults with Disabilities and Other Exceptional Individuals
by Cecil R. Reynolds, Elaine Fletcher-Janzen
Wiley, 2007

It is important for children in all age-groups, however, to have some time to play by themselves.

“Nursing Care of Children: Principles and Practice” by Susan R. James, Kristine Nelson, Jean Ashwill
from Nursing Care of Children: Principles and Practice
by Susan R. James, Kristine Nelson, Jean Ashwill
Elsevier Health Sciences, 2012

For many children, playing alone is their preference, especially after the forced interaction around affective material.

“Handbook of Play Therapy, Advances and Innovations” by Kevin J. O'Connor, Charles E. Schaefer
from Handbook of Play Therapy, Advances and Innovations
by Kevin J. O’Connor, Charles E. Schaefer
Wiley, 1994

Conversely, less active toddlers were able to play better when their mothers were highly stimulating.13 These findings suggest that active children probably need their autonomy and feel cramped by an equally active parent when they are interested in playing alone.

“Emotional Life of the Toddler” by Alicia F. Lieberman
from Emotional Life of the Toddler
by Alicia F. Lieberman
Free Press, 1995

Although some children who engage in fewer social interactions may simply prefer to play alone (Asendorpf, 1990; Coplan, Prakash, O’Neil, & Armer, 2004), this behavior appears to have social consequences for children.

“Handbook of Peer Interactions, Relationships, and Groups, Second Edition” by William M. Bukowski, Brett Laursen, Kenneth H. Rubin
from Handbook of Peer Interactions, Relationships, and Groups, Second Edition
by William M. Bukowski, Brett Laursen, Kenneth H. Rubin
Guilford Publications, 2019

Oktay Kutluk

Kutluk Oktay, MD, FACOG is one of the world's foremost experts in fertility preservation as well as ovarian stimulation and in vitro fertilization for infertility treatments. He developed and performed the world's first ovarian transplantation procedures as well as pioneered new ovarian stimulation protocols for embryo and oocyte freezing for breast and endometrial cancer patients.

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Biography: https://medicine.yale.edu/profile/kutluk_oktay/
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15 comments

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  • This video is awesome. As a former educator, I agree with your opinion on screen time and comments about the Montessori expectation for digital content. It’s always a personal decision, but as I told my parents “the digital jobs our children will have, do not even exist right now. Providing responsible use and strictly supervised exposure, teaches them to manage the addictive nature of digital tools.” ❤️ gift of boredom comment.
    I color in a coloring book sometimes while my child plays. He seems to be satisfied that I’m doing a familiar task while he does something else. Plus coloring is great for reducing stress and lowering BP. 😉

  • Your vidoes are really really helpful all the time!!! Even though I’ve read the toddler montessori book your videos are always big help for me to understand the concept of Montessori method! Love ya

  • Great Videos! Ive just started sharing the daily activities i do with my twin boys, please take a look at my Channel and subscribe if you enjoy, Thank you, Emma x

  • Hi, do you have any advice for encouraging independent play in older children who were never taught to play independently when they were young? The children I help look after (age 3, 5, and 9) are all totally incapable of independent play. They will start to do something and then will soon give up, unless an adult is there with them telling them to continue and stay focused. They get distracted so easily and tire of activities within minutes if left to their own devices. No matter how many open-ended toys are on offer for them, they will give up and start jumping on the couch instead (for example). They will also constantly (every 30 seconds or so) stop what they’re doing and run over to me, asking me to join in or to show me what they’ve done. This is fine once in a while but not all day long!

  • Hello, how long do we work on each phase. Like days, weeks or months? As soon as she has mastered me reading a book next to her and playing on her own for five minutes is this time to move to the phase where I go to get my coffee or does she needs to be able to do this for longer before next phase?

  • Love your videos and appreciate your wisdom! Where did you buy baby Mia’s toys shown in the video (soft blocks, panda taggie toy, etc)? Thanks so much!! ��

  • I was worried about this one, because I let my child play a lot on his own growing up, but now I remember we did crafts, painting, and imaginary places. Yesterday we all played Uno, then my friend and my son played The Matching Game. One of our favorites. When I was young, when I asked my family to play a board game, no one would play with me. I basically do the opposite of the way I was raised, Dr. Paul. Anyway, times have changed a little. Now when you win, you can ask Alexa or Google to play, “We are the Champions”, by Queen. Haha.

  • Hi! I like your videos so much you are so inspiring. But I still have problems with my son to help him to play alone or even play with toys. He is 14months, I try to do all 4 steps, but the problem is when I took anything to do he just climb to sofa to me and do “mess”pull out things, hit me to head, climb on me etc.. I took him back to his carpet and wait for him to took some toy and repeat, but he still doesn’t play with anything… I bought him toys, books and he plays with everything just for few minutes.. Do you have any ideas how to improve this situation? thank you very much:)

  • Wonderful video! My son will be 3 in January and he has always been a very independent with play until recently. He’s still good, but it constantly asking me to come play with him all day. Some times he’s fine when i say not right now but other times he doesnt take it too well. He’s really into imaginary play with his super hero figurines, like alllll day every day this is what he chooses. In your experience, how could I revive, so to say, his independent play again? (Side note im pregnant so not sure if it has anything to do with this) Thank you! Your videos are amazing!!!!

  • Thank you Amy, lovely video. My little girl is only 22 months but I try to encourage her to play alone for a very short time 3-5 mins. She sometimes will, sometimes she won’t. I find she likes playing with rice, water moving it from one pot/box to another back and forth. She does that in the kitchen while I am quickly trying to cook and she is in her learning tower standing next to me. She is not very good at being totally alone with me not being nearby but that’s ok, she is only little.

  • I don’t know how I stumbled on your channel,but I am so glad I did. Your Montessori videos are what I really needed and came at just the right time. Currently bingeing on your videos right now and can’t wait to implement the açtivities with my toddlers. Thank you ��

  • Great video idea and tips! I really struggle with this with my 5 year old. He seems to need constant attention. Your tip to have a special toy for independent play time is brilliant!
    Thank you ❤️

  • In the prt where you say we can be in the room while
    They play and we can read a book or knit but NOT being on instagram. What is the difference If we read a book or be on our phones? Are we trying to prevent them from copying that manner and that is why better be book so later on they would be interested in that?
    Thank you! Love your videos! Very helpful and well created ❤️

  • I am a 19-year-old who has zero plans of having children anytime soon but I still watch every video and rewatch them �� Love Mia and Kylie!!!

  • Awesome Video. Open ended play gives our kids more opportunity to be creative and enables better social interactions to make the world a better place.