Freeplay is Healthy Play
Children are free spirits.
They are not born into rules. Their world is created with the way they perceive life. They go with the flow. That’s why playtime is probably the most important aspect of growing up. Play is all about the flow. The more they play the more they are able to fine-tune motor movements, express their excitement, learn how to forge relationships in teams, deal with competition and discover joy. Through play they understand their own individuality. All this enhances their human intelligence builds their emotional quotient. They grow up to be better adjusted, balanced people. This is the healthy way.
Are today’s children inhibited?
Yes there is a clear unhealthy indication that children are not being themselves completely. The biggest threats are from screens. Passive entertainment through screens means children do not expend energy imagining. What also happens is that WE do not take effort to be creative since they get their creativity fed to them on the sofa. Co-ordination between expression and physical activity is decreasing – resulting in less opening up of children’s individuality.
That’s just one part of the problem.
Parents need to have a fine balance in keeping out of the way yet keeping a watch
As parents we monitor closely not letting children have their full space. Can’t really blame anyone for that. Society is changing. Climate is changing. Children are assailed by toxins, pollution, dust and chemicals, especially in art material and toys. We are constantly looking over their shoulder at what they are coming in contact with.
So how do we create a much-needed time out for children, out of the regulated watchfulness of parents?
Art in play is definitely one of answers
Children are creative. Whatever they do they have a sense of wonder. We have to encourage it. Let them discover how their thoughts flow. Let them express what they feel, what they dream up. Give them materials – sand, water, crayons, paints, colours – and let them spin their own tales.
The importance of child-friendly play and art material
If the materials children use are safe and comfortable, parents would not be holding them back. They would be able to give rein to their ideas. They would be active. It would help motor skills and hand-mind co-ordination. It would give them at out let for that energy to come through. Away from passive lounging in front of the TV or poring over games on the mobile. They would be able to make a new best friend called Imagination.
Art is just play in colours! Let the kids Dabble.