Now that school is out, and summer is in full swing, Explore & More families have a fantastic opportunity to encourage play and learning for the summer months. Continued summer development is vital to fostering growth physically, socially, and cognitively. All of this can be done with simple engagement by parents and caregivers and will do wonders for childhood development. This excerpt from the National Academies of Sciences perfectly encapsulates the impact of play on development:
“Play, which is often unstructured, is critical to children’s development and can promote decision-making, social skills, and creativity (Ginsburg, 2007). Play is an important tool for elementary-age children, both to engage them in academic learning and to foster growth and a sense of competency in a variety of developmental domains (Ginsburg, 2007; Milteer et al., 2012). Play promotes development in a number of areas, including cognitive, social emotional, and physical, and when engaged in with parents or other adults, play also promotes the development of supportive relationships (Yogman et al., 2018).”
Play at Explore & More is the perfect way to supplement this growth, as is playing outside, and exploring nature. Using July and the rest of the summer months as a launchpad for the next school year can bring truly awesome benefits to your children. Aside from the cognitive benefits structured summer play brings with it health benefits. The American Academy of Pediatrics, “calls for toddlers to have at least 30 minutes of structured (adult-led) physical activity and at least 60 minutes of unstructured (child-led) physical activity each day.” Staying active even at a young age will be foundational to the creation of healthy habits and physical growth. Summer ‘vacation’ is the perfect time to advance the brain and body of children, and as caregivers, it is important to remember that play is the perfect avenue for this progression.