What many parents don’t know is that the child’s mental and physical growth is related to their social development. In other words, the more sociable the child is and the more time they spend outdoors, the more likely they will do well at school. That’s because social interaction improves their sense of self and the expectations of society. Which is why the more time children spend with other kids their age the better for them.
There are certain skills that every child needs to learn early on in their lives because it will help them cope with the demands of adult life. And these skills can best be learned by playing with others of the same age group. Since children are self-centered by nature, the only way to help them ease out of that phase and learn to interact with others is by having them spend more time with their peers. That’s when a child learns not to be self-absorbed and knows the value of sharing, playing along, and making friends. All these valuable lessons will come in handy as they grow up.
Problem solving is another important skill that is a marker of a healthy brain and well-developed mental faculties. And while a child can do puzzles at home alone, recent studies have found that working with peers to find solutions to various problems increases the child’s development due to the other skills needed to interact with children such as boundary setting and working in a team together.
Without immersing the child in various outdoor learning environments they wouldn’t know the value of empathy or learn about the wide spectrum of human emotions. These aspects are what makes some people socially smart since they can recognize the emotional states of people around them and respond to different situations appropriately.
Research has shown that the best times to teach children about discipline and the consequences of their actions is at an early age. And while the parent can certainly do that, it’s not really the same as when the child learns these values by interacting with other children. The reason is that the parent is an authority figure and a child can’t yet make the distinction between the parent and the society as a whole. But learning with a group of children helps instill the principles of social responsibility in their young psyches long before they even know what they mean.
The following Info-graphic sheds more light on the kinds of games children can play at the playground.