IMPORTANCE OF HAVING A PLAY SPACE AT HOME: OUR JOURNEY
A play space for a child doesn’t mean that you need a lot of space. Sometimes it’s just not possible to assign an entire room for a child, totally understandable. But you can still have a play space for your child at your house, with whatever you have. I’ll discuss more on this on a different post.
Now, lets talk about the importance of having a dedicated play space or play area. What I personally feel from my experience is that the importance is high.
Independent play & Independent Child:
A play space has given Chintu a lot more independence in every way. He had the freedom to choose his activity/toy on his own, without looking out for help. The skill of decision making developed. It also meant uninterrupted play time; he was able to focus on his play, and had access to it anytime during the day. Also, he was able to move around freely.
A play area or space – meant that it is the responsibility of the child to take care of their space. Responsibility began, he cleaned his spaced, organised it and maintained it.
This was a big milestone of us, when the play area was set for him, he immediately felt that ownership in him, with it came his independence and responsibility.
Play got better & Play time increased:
Once our play space was set, we started toy rotation. This gave him more time to explore every toy and opportunity of learning got better. Earlier, that is before we had a play space, some toys were unused. He played only with a few toys, sometimes every toy was out of the cupboard and the play time was so less. This completely changed and it made a huge difference. Learning got better.
Few other pointers:
- Toys were not lying around in every room, which made it easier for Chintu to find what toy he was looking for.
- Easier clean up and easier to access.
Having a play space doesn’t mean that, Chintu gets to play only in that room, sometimes he brings a toy to a different room to play. Takes it back after he is done.
Also, if possible, I suggest having a simple play setup in another room, which will be a secondary play area. It can just have a few books; one or two toys may be – can be an alone space for the child. Will share more about the alone space in my future post.
We have temporarily moved to our native and honestly, I strongly felt the need to have a play space here.for him After giving it a lot of thought, I set it up again with no investment and then with a small investment. What made me decide?
- Chintu asked for it, he said he feels happier when he has a space for himself. And he said he misses his play time in his play room.
- On observing him for a while, I felt his need for it and it was something that was so emotional to him. He was trying to set a play space on his own, when I saw that, I dint have to think any further.
I first set this play area/space with no investment, and realized that this is something that we really need, Chintu really needs. Since, our stay was getting extended decided to make a small investment and Chintu was happier than ever before. With his grand parents, cousins to play with, more outdoors and an accessible play room got made him the happiest kid.