What about playing alone?
At the moment, many of us are facing the challenge of juggling family and work life at the same time and in the same place. Over the coming weeks there will be times when your child will need to play on their own. Rest assured that children can benefit from some independent play time. After all, everyone needs time and space now and then to concentrate on themselves and reflect.
Why is playing alone so important, especially for children?Playing alone is important because it strengthens children's own self-efficacy from an early age – this is the sense that ‘I can do this’. Independent play helps build concentration and the development of self-efficacy - these are important skills that can be used as a basis for further learning experiences.
When can children start playing alone?Small children can play alone for up to half an hour, children from the age of three can enjoy solo play for longer periods of time. They begin to enjoy being alone and like to retreat from time to time to play, paint or do crafts.
How can I help to create independent play time?Try to create opportunities for playtime alone when you can. In normal, everyday life, it’s not always easy to find undisturbed time. Use the time in the next few weeks to bring out toys that have been put aside for a long time. If you can, involve your child in the choice of activity. How about creating a fun, play environment by making a new play corner together?
Is playing more than just "occupation"?Absolutely. During independent play, children are developing a variety of essential skills and exploring their imaginations.
How can children keep busy on their own?Every child is different. Many children love creative activities such as painting or handicrafts. Others like to read or enjoy puzzles – puzzling can encourage focus and relaxation, and offer a great sense of achievement when they finally find a long sought-after piece. Logic games and tricky challenges appeal to other children. All very different activities but all with one thing in common – they enable children to take some time out and focus on the here and now.