Playdates are no child’s play, they are important
PLAYDATES ARE NO CHILD’S PLAY, THEY ARE IMPORTANT
Remember those days when we were kids, we ran out and played in the neighbourhood with other kids. Play was arranged by stepping out the front door. Arranging a playdate was probably foreign to my mum. Parents those days need not face this parenting challenge. Today, parents need to decide and arrange for playdates regularly. What happened to the kind of community environment that allows spontaneous play? Why are people more distance these day? Well, that’s another conversation for another post. Today, we want to talk about the importance of playdates!
IMPORTANCE OF PLAYDATES AND WHY THEY MATTERS
Playdates are VERY important for children! Do you know, from the time children are three years old and recognise that there are people their age on this planet, they want to interact with playmates (Sperling, 2014). Children develop their brain power through interaction with people. So playdates are a necessity in this increasingly isolating society of ours. Many times, kids battles over toys and crayons, or who plays the teacher (for example), but these also lead to problem solving skills, compromise, creativity, and the use of their imagination. The way your child interacts with others has impacts on their future character.
Affection, empathy, negotiation and appreciating someone else’s point of views are just some of the things your child starts to grasp during that playdate with her peers. “By interacting with their peers, children begin to learn about perspective-taking, where they can realise how others may have different thoughts and feelings,” says Dr. Theodote K. Pontikes from Loyola University in Chicago.
Children also learn from watching. When we (parents) show them how to share by divvying up the colour pencils, they are taking that in and filing it away for next time. Children also learn from doing. Practice makes perfect and kids get better at cooperation the more they work their sharing muscles. When you take your child out of your home and into another’s, she gets to work on her manners. She must ask nicely to play with those new toys. Both kids learn to take turns. Your child also has the chance to utilise her right brain without spending money attending Heguru classes. The kids can make-up games together, have a picnic, play dress-up or just put on an apron and pretend to be a chef.
Playdates are important for children. They are not a waste of time. As much as socialising is important for adults, playdates are important for children, maybe even more important.
BENEFITS OF PLAYDATES
OUR RECENT PLAYDATE BY THE POOL
That saying, I’ve been setting my kids on playdates since Sonia was about one year old. Just recently, we had another playdate with the neighbours’ kids! This time round, my friend, Deb organised a picnic by the pool. That was so much fun! Both Sonia and Arnold had a whale of a time! We need to do this AGAIN!!
The kids, all dressed in their colourful swimsuits, geared with their water guns, dived into the pool! If you must know, there were a total of five kids. Small groups are easier to handle.
We seldom take Arnold to the pool, so he took a little longer to warm up and drop his fears. It’s a good thing that Sonia is now more confident in the water, so I had more time with Arnold.
We sat at the stairs for quite
a while a long while before he decided to take a step down into the water.
Jiejie now prefers hanging out with her friend than me! LOL… Through the 1-hr while we were in the pool, she was on her own with Heidi and Tiffany!
And Arnold was by my side ALL THE TIME! We need to bring him down more often!
Watching her play and socialise with her friends made me felt like she had grown sooooooooo much! Where is my baby?!?
After having a splashing good time in the pool, we came up for a picnic!!! Deb had prepared kids’ friendly food, drinks and snacks. And I simply brought an empty stomach. Opss! Let me prepare the food the next time, so I don’t feel so bad!
Here’s Heidi distributing the drink to all the other kids (like a da jie da)!
Nom nom nom…
This is probably my favourite picture! Precious bonding time, priceless.
If you ask me, what have the kids learnt today? Plenty. They learnt to share, to mingle, to accommodate, to compromise, and the list goes on. And my kids tried new food. Though they are fussy eaters and refused the corn and chicken nuggets, at least they tried eating them.
They are already looking forward to the next playdate!