Too often, children rely on electronics for their entertainment, which leads to their inactivity and lack of socialization. As a parent, you want your children to play because that is how they learn, grow, and develop socially and emotionally. Playtime is critical to child development and health, and it’s also an opportunity for you to bond with your child and learn more about their likes and interests. You can have fun while watching them grow into the person they were meant to be. Participating in life for your child is a limited opportunity to grow older and take on their activities.
Here are a few ways to encourage more play in your children’s lives.
Plan fun activities and events.
Giving your children opportunities to play with other kids and do exciting things will lead them to play without you having to tell them to play. You can work with a bounce house rental company to get an inflatable slide, obstacle course, bounce house, water slide, or other party equipment and bouncers to your home for a fun outdoor party. Your kids will be the talk of the neighborhood as all of the other kids want to come to play with them. You can plan pool parties and have yard games set up if you have a pool. You can celebrate random daily holidays with games, crafts, and themed foods. Planning fun activities with your children will alleviate the back-and-forth of you telling your children to play and them saying they are bored.
Provide them with things to play with.
Backyard structures are ideal for encouraging children to play outside and be physically active. Swings, a slide, a playhouse, and a sandbox are all engaging activities for your children. Similar to planning events, if you provide your children with fun and engaging things to do and play with, they will be more likely to use those items. Sometimes, because children tend to have an active imagination, adults assume they should find ways to have fun on their own. Expecting too much of young children is setting them up for failure. Installing a backyard play structure will provide them with a wide range of possibilities.
Play with them.
The greatest way to encourage more play in your children’s lives is to play with them. Children want your time and attention more than anything else, so playing with them will model play behavior while also giving them the attention they thrive on. It is unrealistic to be available to play with your children all of the time. However, you can be entirely focused on them when playing with them. Leave your phone somewhere else and engage with them, playing the games they enjoy. Show them that their likes and interests matter to you and focus on them. This can be challenging if you have multiple children who want to do different things. The best approach is to designate a small period of alone time with each child throughout the week so they each get individual attention even though most of your time is spent all together as a family.
Always coming up with ideas to play with your kids can be exhausting, and the key is not to overthink it. When you set time aside to play with your kids, they will develop ways to play because they are happy to have you there by their side. If you plan a little party or event, they will play and have fun until they collapse from exhaustion. Putting a swing set or playhouse up in the yard can provide years of entertainment and activities.