Increase Play, Increase Learning
If you want to increase your child’s focus you should increase the amount they play. Do you ever catch yourself telling your child to “sit still” or “calm down”? In some situations, it’s appropriate to keep your child still, there is also a time to increase play.
Think about when you’ve been sitting for a long time in a car or at your desk. Doesn’t too much time sitting still make you tired, unfocused, and maybe even moody? Yes! Because play, or movement, is essential for our creativity, happiness, and our ability to express ourselves.
Why Don’t We Play Anymore?
Now, research has shown that while we ask for kids’ attention and a calm learning environment, to achieve both, we need to increase play. Researchers are suggesting that movement and creativity lead to better behavior in the classroom. Also, movement can combat a number of things, including obesity, depression, and attention-deficit disorders.
What You Can Do to Increase Play?
There are ways to increase play, including the suggestions by Northeast Ohio Parent, which include movement breaks, yoga ball seats, and standing desks. Parents can also encourage play at home with some of these simple ideas:
- Limiting screen time – this encourages kids to find other ways to increase play and use their imagination.
- Dancing in the kitchen while making dinner together. Tell Alexa to play that funky music!
- Encouraging time outside or with non-electronic toys – do you have any board games?
- Begin simple races in the backyard (who can make it to the fence and back the fastest!?)
- Opt for a family ballgame rather than watching that next episode on Netflix
Why We Implement Breaks at Camp
At Classroom Antics, we implement play breaks into our summer camp days. Time and time again, the results of these breaks show better focus on learning. Ask any instructor and they’ll tell you the breaks during camp are a really return the focus back on education. When kids begin not listening or raising the volume, it is almost a subconscious call to increase play. Once they get that movement break, they are ready to focus and create within the classroom again.