“What did you do at school today?” “PLAY!” That’s the answer you want to hear! Whether in the classroom, recess, P.E., Motor Lab, or sports, at St. Andrew’s we strive to offer PLAY consistently, thus providing physical, social, cognitive, and language development throughout your child’s day.
Research shows that play contributes to healthy brain development. This development aids in higher grades, self regulations of emotions, executive functioning, and brains that know how it interact with others in a positive manner. However, children today have less opportunity to engage in play than past generations. (recommended 60 min.per day) With our rushed schedules, planned activities, and lack of child-driven play, some children are experiencing ‘play deprivation’. It is essential to provide opportunities for children to initiate and direct their own play in order for them to feel in control of themselves and their environment.
Without the fundamentals of play, schools are observing increases in childhood obesity, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder (ADHD), weak bone development, anxiety and depression.
- Diet, exercise and active, outdoor play are important in reducing obesity in children.
- Physical play may be beneficial in reducing disruptive behaviors associated with ADHD.
Weak Bone Development
- Calcium and daily activity will build strong bones and reduce osteoporosis and bone fractures later in life.
Anxiety and Depression
- Providing the choices, creativity and socializing that play provides, reduces the stress that people experience when there is a lack of control over their own lives.
St. Andrew’s will always strive in building your child’s emotional, spiritual and physical health every single day!
“Our children from their earliest years must take part in all the more lawful forms of play, for if they are not surrounded with such an atmosphere they can never grow up to be well conducted and virtuous citizens.” Plato
By Laura Gabel, 2019-2020 Head of Primary Branch
Improving Children’s Health through Play: Exploring Issues and Recommendations A collaboration between the Alliance for Childhood and the US Play Coalition 2018