Allowing time for play is the best thing that parents can do for the health of their children. Mixing imaginative, creative and active play makes a well balanced play diet; it is the best for their social and emotional development since every play has its own contribution to an all-round psychological progress. Instructional strategies are things that are arranged; designed by teachers to establish the teacher-student-and subject matter interaction, or any other combination of the three elements. French (2007) says that play is very beneficial in early childhood education; instructors view it as an essential means of enhancing all aspects of child development. Most people think that children playing are just having fun and enjoying themselves, but this is not the case. As a child plays, he/she learns about himself and what he can do. Through play, children develop problem solving skills, social and interpersonal skills. This paper discusses the importance of play as an instructive strategy.
One of the reason why instructors should involve play as one of their strategies is that it helps children in their vocabulary and linguistic development. This is instilled while singing with them or engaging them in activities that involve the use of rhyming words. According to experts, as quoted by originalplay.com, nurturing verbal language skills during the early childhood years is exceptionally more important than teaching them phonetics and word-recognition. Talking to a child, as a parent, enables him/her pick up your language quickly. Singing songs, story-telling, engaging in talking and reciting poems enhances children’s language skills (Samuelson 2009).
Secondly, it is the primary means for children exploring the world, investigating its properties and to build an understanding of how this world works. For instance, we may look at a group of children as they play in a block area. Using wooden unit bocks, they begin by stacking different shapes and sizes of blocks, one on top of the other. They use a rug as the surface and randomly place larger blocks on top of the smaller ones, rectangular on top of triangular, and place them haphazardly making the tower to fall quickly. Afterwards, one of them will come up with an idea; if they put on hats like the real construction workers the building may stand but not. So another one will come with a different idea; until one will finally come up with an idea that the small blocks seem to rest steadily on the bigger ones than otherwise. At long last, they make a stable tower and finally call the teacher joyfully to see their accomplishment (originalplay.com).
Thirdly, it helps children develop self-esteem. It promotes joy; which is suitable for health and self-esteem. While playing, children interact among themselves. The ordinary things and tasks that children accomplish while playing boost their confidence if they succeed in them. This consequently raises their self esteem and the will of taking even more challenging tasks (Frankel 2010).
Fourthly, imaginative play develops children’s potential by developing their creativity and imagination. For instance, role-play triggers children’s urge to develop new ideas such as giving voices to toys and inventing adventures. Through such play, the child begins to investigate facts and fiction, understand the world and develop a positive relationship between themselves and other people (Samuelson 2009).
Lastly, through play the child’s learning process is self-sustained on the basis of his own love of learning and engaging with life playfully. Play is not a fixed plan; one develops new methods and strategies to do things as they play. This increases the efficiency of the brain function. There are many benefits associated with using play as a learning method. However, most people think that children only play for fun. I think that instructors and teachers should employ it as one of the main methods of teaching due to its overwhelming benefits. Parents, also, should let children take lead in play. It can be immensely helpful for them as well as the kids.