You might have heard parents planning playdates for their kids.
Ever wondered why they are taking out time of their busy schedule and organizing playdates when they could have rested?
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, play is essential in building many skills like language, social-emotional skills, problem-solving skills, teamwork, creativity, and many more. So, planning a playdate is helping your child in many ways which you can not see at the moment.
Playing alone or with parents or caregivers also is a good way to enhance the skills but playdates help in many other ways. They need their age mates to spend time with, learn more and explore more. So, a playdate is important to help your child grow better.
Importance Of Playdates For Kids
What is the importance of playdates?
1. Helps in social skill development
We are all social animals, and social skills development is very important. Playdates help kids interact with other kids and help them learn how to interact, behave, play together, and much more. Social skill development also helps later in life.
You learn how to make new friends, deal with different types of people, solve problems, and make your way and space among others. Social skills are very important for survival. So, playdates are a great way in helping children to deal with more people and create their own space among them.
2. Provides learning opportunity
You get more opportunities to learn when you play or mingle with more people. The number of brains in the group increase, and so do ideas. So, the child will get to know different and new things. Children who play in an unstructured environment tend to gain more out of it. There are no rules or regulations in free play, so the child is free to try and do anything he or she wants. They look at each other, get more ideas, and learn more. This is one of the reasons schools nowadays organize group plays in class.
3. Helps in learning team play
When you play with other children, you play in a team. When you play in a team you need to play in a way that everyone gets a chance and is heard. Playdates help the child to gain patience to play together as a team, listen to what the other child has to say, and give equal chance to another child. It is a very important life skill and helps you be a leader. Taking your team along is one of the best things a leader does. And playdates are one of the best ways to encourage leadership in a child.
4. Children learn to share
Sharing is caring, as we all have heard. When children play together with toys they learn to share. It will not come to them immediately. It takes a lot of time and patience to teach children that sharing is a good idea. We need to keep our calm and make them understand that sharing is good for them as well as their peers as if they share their toys, their peers or friends will share their toys with them. So, it is a benefit for both. They need to trust their friends that they would be getting their toy back.
Once they start sharing they would be good to go. they will start sharing even their favorite toys with their friends. Learning how to share will again be an important learning for future life.
5. Helps in building trust
Trust is something very important for human survival. Many of us have trust issues. Playdates are one of the best initial ways to help the child build trust in his or her peers. As they start playing together slowly they will start trusting each other with their toys, and other things. It will take time, but they will get there soon.
Not just in a positive way, but also the child will slowly start learning whom to not trust. E.g. your child trusted his or her friend and gave him or her their favorite toy. But instead what happened next was the other child broke the toy. Here the child is learning when not to trust. And learning this is as important as learning how to trust.
6. Helps in developing problem-solving skills
Problem-solving skills are very important to lead a pleasant and confident life. A child should know how to solve their problems and take a stand for themselves. Starting from things they will finally learn how to deal with bigger issues in life. It will give them confidence, and a way of dealing with things appropriately.
Playdates are good ways of making a child confident in solving their problems. When kids play together, their opinions and judgments won’t match and there will be problems. Solving the problems slowly on their own will help them learn the skill. Initially, they will come to you for anything and everything, but slowly when they will understand you want them to deal with it on their own they will start solving their problems.
7. Helps in cognitive skill development
Cognitive skills mean understanding something. It again is a very important skill that the child needs in the present and future life. During a playdate, the child would explore new things, think more, and solve his or her problem. He or she would start understanding things much better than when they understand things under the supervision of an adult. So, cognitive skill development is seen quite often during frequent play dates.
8. Helps to be empathetic
Empathy is an important human behavior that is a learned behavior. Empathy is knowing the feelings of another person. If a person is empathetic the person will know the difference between right and wrong he or she is doing to other.
During playdates, the child will slowly learn what is making another child happy or sad. Once the child can identify the child will start behaving in an empathetic way. The ability to empathize start developing between the age of 3-5 years approximately.
9. Gain Independence
Who doesn’t want their child to be independent?
Everyone does. Playdates provide a wonderful opportunity to help your child gain some independence. It doesn’t come in a day or two. It takes time. But eventually, the child will start playing and doing things on his or her own. The child will learn how to be a little independent from a young age. They surely will be dependent on you for a lot of things, but this will give them a good start.
Slowly, they will start doing other things on their own and will be independent much sooner than a child who has no playdates at all and are all the time with their parents.
10. It is fun
Once you take your child for a playdate and the child, there are a lot of chances that your child will be waiting for the next play date soon. Playdates are fun. You get to learn so much, explore more places and toys, meet your age mates, do things independently and so much more. Playdate helps a child to be happier. The child would sleep peacefully and would be away from the screen. We all love meeting our friends and age mates. The same is with children. They enjoy and have constructive play with their friends, and so look forward to more.