Motor skills are developed and improved during the first years of a child’s life. Children refine these new skills when they learn to stand, sit, jump, crawl, pull and push. As a parent or guardian, you can help your child refine these skills by investing in specialized toys.
Specialized toys will enhance these movements and create a base for these remarkable skills. If you’ve been wondering which toys you should buy to develop and improve your child’s motor skills, this article is for you.
Also, we are going to discuss the benefits that your child will get by playing regularly. Let’s get started!
Whether indoors or outdoors, balancing games are excellent in introducing the concept of balance to your child. To balance, children need to concentrate on what they are doing and learn how to negotiate their way without slipping off.
It’s a fun activity especially if your child has siblings or friends. Balancing games will develop his or her core motor skills.
Rockers and seesaws
Rockers and seesaws are suitable for one to three children. It’s one of the best ways to develop motor skills, balance and encourage movement. This game also teaches your child the importance of communication and sharing.
Since it’s more effective for more than two children, it helps in developing and improving social skills. When buying rockers and seesaws, ensure that they have a stable base to avoid injuries.
They are safe toys for indoor and outdoor use. Ensure that your child doesn’t tip back too far to avoid injuries.
According to research paper writers, parachute games are excellent with both small and large groups. These games help in improving teamwork, listening skills, and coordination abilities. They can be also used to help children with attention difficulties.
If your child has many friends, a large parachute and ball game will work like magic. As you are going to discover, your child has lots of fun-packed parachute games waiting for him or her to explore.
Can you throw the hoops to the stick? If you think you can do it effectively, think again. Throwing games are not just entertaining but also effective in developing and improving a child’s motor skills.
Available in a wide range of materials, these toys can be used indoors or outdoors depending on your child’s preferences.
Soft building blocks
Building blocks are a great option because they grow with the child. The best time to buy these blocks is when your baby is small. Take the blocks and move them horizontally or vertically to help your child practice visual tracking. They are great for grabbing and modeling.
As your child gets older, he or she will start using more blocks. Don’t be afraid of your child knocking the blocks over and falling because they are normally soft. Building blocks not only enhance coordination but also creativity.
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Importance of play for your child
Now that you know the best toys that your child can play with to develop and improve his or her motor skills, it’s time to discuss the importance of playing for your child.
Some parents never allow their children to play outside fearing that they can have accidents or indulge in dangerous activities. While this may have some truth in it, your child needs to play outside and socialize with others. All you have to do is keep an eye on what he or she does.
Stimulates brain development
Playing promotes the development of a child's brain in many ways which provides critical life experiences that set the ground for the growth of the mind.
Since infant brains are equipped with abundant brain cell connections, an environment that encourages play provides the perfect experiences to build this foundation. If these experiences are absent, these connections will be lost.
Researchers have found that an environment with toys and games can alter a child’s physiology and chemistry. The brain has a cognitive processing center that gets developed when children play.
In general, people with higher intelligence usually spend most of their early years playing. A research study conducted by the University of Arkansas found that regular playing with toys leads to a higher IQ. Playing develops a child’s linguistics, cognition, and social skills.
Divergent thinking has been closely linked to creativity because it enables people to generate new ideas. Many studies have associated playing with divergent thinking.
Free play or unstructured play encourages students to design and play their games. By using their imagination, children create entertaining games.
Emotional Regulation and impulse control
Self-regulation is among the critical skills for school readiness. Disciplined children can resist the temptation to grab objects from other children, wait for their turn, control negative emotions and endure hard times.
A study conducted at dissertation services found that children who participated in pretend plays handled negative events well compared to those who didn’t play.
Emotional regulation is not just essential for academic excellence but also a huge predictor of social success. Children who show better emotional control are competent and likable in their social circle.
Empathy and competence
Play is critical in the social development in children. Free play with others including peers, parents, and siblings offers a great opportunity to develop and improve social skills. As children play, the act of pretending and negotiating with other players improves their social skills.
Playing also provides children with opportunities to interact with others. As the play together, children develop self-control, learn how to cooperate and get along with others. Psychologists discovered that the amount of play and complexity greatly determined a child’s popularity and social skills.
Playful children are usually happy cooperative and well-adjusted than their counterparts who rarely play. Children who play regularly also develop empathy which greatly improves their social skills. These children grow to understand other people’s beliefs and feelings.
Improves physical and mental health
We’ve seen that children who play regularly know how to regulate their emotions. Emotional regulation is vital to a child’s mental health and resilience. Children who engage in physical activities develop strength, endurance and motor skills which positively affects their physical health.
Teaches essential life lessons
Play develops a child’s ability to solve problems. If you’ve ever watched children playing, you’ve probably realized how they act life’s problems while they pretend to play. It helps them cope with challenges in their way.
It also allows them to rehearse their skills and social roles. When children learn to take different perspectives, they exercise abstract thinking.
Play releases stress
Children, teenagers, and adults are encouraged to play every day to release stress. Playing makes you happy and joyful. And so does your child. It helps them relax and release anxiety and tension in the body.
Built-up stress has lots of negative consequences, especially in children. By encouraging your child to play, you’ll help him or her boost self-confidence and awareness when engaging in other activities.
Tips for encouraging rich play
Children need unscheduled and open-ended times to play
Children learn quickly when parents supply them with open-ended materials such as blocks, water, small shovels, sand, and balls to name a few. At times, the purpose of a child’s play is clear for instance, pretending to be the parent of a doll or it could be creative such as building blocks or playing with balls.
By providing your child with adequate materials, he or she will come up with different games easily and quickly.
Be present while your child plays
According to thesisrush, setting aside some time to play with your child and spending quality time is necessary for his or her physical and mental growth. While playing, let your child lead. This means that you should be ready to get dirty and crawl around.
By being present, you’ll not only prevent accidents but you’ll also encourage your child to play. He or she will get the opportunity to learn new concepts while improving his or her social skills. By following your child’s lead, you’ll boost his or her self-confidence in the long run.
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The future of your child depends on how he or she is brought up in his or her early years. By investing in toys and other playing materials, you’ll help your child develop and improve motor skills, self-esteem, and social skills easily.
As we’ve seen, children who don’t play much have a lower IQ compared to those who play and socialize with others. Encourage your child to play as much as he or she can. Remember to allocate some time to play with your child. Finally, be present while your child is playing to avoid accidents.
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