Play: An Essential Aspect in Child Development

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Task 1 Play is essential for the major areas of development in a child. Parents must understand the functions of play so they realize its key role and do not feel play time is "wasted" and takes away from learning. "Play allows children to learn at their own rate and acquire concepts that might escape them if they were forced to sit at a table and listen to a teacher talk" (SOURCE). For speech and language development, play affords children the opportunity to engage in dialogue about what they are doing, including dialogue with adults and peers, as well as self-talk. When adults play with children, they can provide context and meaning. For example, in a housekeeping area, the adult can name, or ask the child to name, various items and tell about their uses. Research has shown that the later development of abstract processing first requires the development of language skills (Diamant, Prendergast, Estrovitz, Banks, and Van Der Veen, 2012, p. 5). Cognitive development is enhanced by play. Children imitate actions and words of adults such as parents and teachers, which enables them to process what they have seen and heard. Children learn to make decisions and solve problems. "It is essential to give young children time to be physically active during the day," (SOURCE) The playground or a classroom's gross-motor area provides children freedom of movement to engage in free play or teacher-led activities such as "Simon Says." Music therapy can also enhance motor learning
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