The importance of play and recreation in childhood

The importance of play and recreation in childhood

The importance of play

Many parents associate playing with children as ‘picking up’ or leisure time, however, it is much more important than that.

Many people and parents associate the game in children with ‘picking up’ or leisure time, however, more than a simple opportunity for fun, the game is serious when it comes to the health and development of a child. child. From “it’s not…here it is!” to hide-and-seek to board games, there are many ways to play that enrich a child’s brain, body, and life in very important ways.

The American Academy of Pediatrics clinical report, “The Power of Play: It’s Pediatric Role in Improving Young Children’s Development,” explains how and why playing with both parents and other children is critical to building better brains, bodies, and prosperous social bonds; All these things are important in today’s world.

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Research shows that play can improve children’s abilities to plan, organize, get along with others, and regulate their emotions. In addition, the game helps with language, math, and social skills, and even helps children cope with stress.

Benefits Of Playing

Play and recreation in childhood

According to the study, the following are the contributions of the game to the capacities of children:


it allows different movements that exercise them and helps their psychomotor coordination, helps reduce the risk of overweight and obesity, and allows them to sleep better at night.

Sensory and mental development

It is favored by the discrimination of shapes, sizes, colors, smells, textures, etc.


When experiencing their emotions such as surprise, joy, expectation, etc.

Creativity and imagination

It is an innate part of the game, it allows its development and strengthening.

Formation of cooperation habits. when interacting with peers, it favors an affective bond and bonds of cooperation.

Knowledge of the body. In babies and young children, play is a tool to get to know their body and their environment.

The Game In Colombia

A couple of months ago, the movement Join the Game, through its intervention Juega Que Sana, an initiative that seeks to promote play within the daily activities of boys and girls to facilitate their learning and contribute to their health and growth, carried out a survey of more than 3,000 fathers, mothers and caregivers (PMC’s) and non-caregivers in Bogotá, Cali, Medellín, and Barranquilla mainly.

The survey aimed to identify, in the context of the pandemic, the importance of play as a facilitator of the learning process, demonstrating preferences and dynamics in Colombian families.

This survey, which was answered to a greater extent by mothers, showed that the majority of those surveyed highly value play, since 92% considered playing more important in raising a child than organizing the room, and 67% he considered it more important to play than to study at home.

However, not all socio-emotional skills are valued in the same way by the respondents: the women surveyed considered that communicating assertively is the socio-emotional skill that should be encouraged the most in children (27%), while for men it is collaboration and works as a team (26%).

The survey also revealed that a segment of the population reported that they perceive an improvement in the socio-emotional skills of boys and girls. However, a significant percentage of caregivers (37%), fathers, mothers, and caregivers of children over 14 years of age (27%) or parents and caregivers of medium and high socioeconomic levels (23%) consider that, in fact, these skills are worse after the pandemic.

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