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Running Head: PLAY ESSAY 1

Play Essay Jennifer Avila Victor Valley College

Authors Note This paper was prepared for Child Development 110, taught by Professor Mary Sypkens.

PLAY ESSAY

Play is a childs foundation for all learning whether they are learning numbers, letters, phonics, music; virtually anything can be learned from play. Children need to play with things such as blocks to think critically and develop cognitively. They need to play with other children to develop socially; they need dramatic play to develop emotionally. They need outside play and physical play to develop physically. Children are born explorers, there is no right or wrong way to explore, learn, or play. Each child develops at their own speed with play as their basis. Cognitive development is a lifelong skill that children will need not just in play but in life. Audrey a three year old girl is playing with blocks and is using a triangle as the base of her building. She is becoming upset because the blocks will not stack. She decides to try a rectangle as her base and notices that the blocks are no longer falling over, and it enables her to stack 6 blocks. Audrey did not just figure out that a triangle cannot be used as a base, she learned that she needs a solid base. Audery has learned to think critically. According to Feeney (2013), as the children solve the problems of balance and symmetry, thats inherent in construction, they plan and communicate as they build. Cognitive development is a child taking the initiative to learn, a child figuring out how and why things work leads to learning their numbers and letters, in a fun way. Not only is it important to develop cognitively but emotional development is important for their growth. Emotional development can also come from play, children learn how to initiate social interactions with their family, friends, and peers. According to Feeney (2013) by the time children reach their second birthday they can have dramatic play skills, such as feeding toys. 24 month old Jazmine, is having her afternoon snack with her favorite toy doll. Before she takes a bite of food, she gives a bite to her doll. She says yum, and then takes a bite herself. She continues going back and forth between herself and the doll until her snack is gone. Jazmine is showing awareness of the doll by feeding her, she is developing dramatic play skills for the future. According to Feeney (2013) by the age of four or five, they can pretend to be workers in a store and costumers. Julian, four, is riding his

PLAY ESSAY

bike. He gets off to get a firefighter hat and tells another child, four year old Chase, lets be firefighters! As they begin to play Julian gets off his bike to save someone. Chase tells him, I wanted to save them! Julian replies, its okay Chase, you can save the next person. Chase complies. Both Chase and Julian are developing friendships, cooperative play, and socio-dramatic play, this leads to the development of cooperative attitudes and behaviors (Feeney et al., 2013 p.415). Making friendships is also very important for a childs emotional behavior. Being developed emotionally is crucial for children. The reason it is important is children at play devise and comfort challenges and anticipate changes. In the process they master their fears; resolve internal conflicts; act out anger, hostility and frustration; and resolve personal problems for which the real world offers no apparent solutions (Feeney et al., 2013 p.415). According to philosopher Freud, play was identified as a primary avenue trough which children express and deal with their fears, anxieties, and desire (Feeney et al., 2013 p.415). During outside free play time, Abrianna, Elena, and Arielle were playing together. There are two lines of chalk drawn on the floor and Abrianna says, we have to go on this bridge so the alligators do not get us! She walks through stumbling and saying, woah! Ahh! That was a close one! She makes it to the other side and says, come on Elena! It is your turn! Don't fall in or the alligators will get you! All three girls continue to do this repeatedly. During this play the girls are expressing their fears to falling in to the alligators and are helping each other succeed in getting to the other side. The girls are laughing, smiling, and playing with each other. In another scene, Leo, Isabella, and Caitlyn are playing house. Leo is the daddy, Caitlyn is the mommy, and Isabella is the baby. It is time for dinner and Caitlyn gives them chicken, Leo says, I hate chicken I am not going to eat it. Caitlyn says it helps you be strong, Leo shouts, I hate chicken, Isabella says, Stop fighting, daddy is going to leave again! Here Isabella is expressing her fear of her dad leaving them over an argument. In her past her dad might have left the house or dinner table over an argument, now Isabella is afraid of it happening again. Not only is play important

PLAY ESSAY

for a childs cognitive, emotional and social development, physical development is a very important skill to learn. Every time the word physically comes to mind most think of running, jumping, kicking but it is much more than that. Children develop large and small muscles when he/she lifts, carries, and stacks blocks (Feeney et al., 2013 p.417). Three year old Jaime is outside running and kicking a ball. Which the activity he has chosen to play he is building strength, stamina, and skills that are needed to succeed (Feeney et al., 2013 p.414). Another activity that helps develop a childs physical development is sensory, sensory awareness is gained as they handle the blocks, feel the texture, and note the grain of the wood this is because children are using their fine motor skills to touch and feel the different textures in what they are feeling (Feeney et al., 2013 p.417). Regardless if a child is playing with blocks, house, jumping, running they are learning and developing. Although, it may just seem that play is just children running having fun. Children are learning much more valuable skills through their play. Cognitive, physical, social, and emotional development is the most important domains a child needs to learn in their first years of learning. It is important to support each child in their play as play is what children are born to do. With proper materials children will make good decisions in learning what they want to know and experiencing new things.

Bibliography

PLAY ESSAY

Feeney , S.. Christensen, D. Moravcik, E. (2013). Who who am i in the lives of children?. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson education, inc.