We shouldn’t underestimate how important it is for children to play and have fun – it is incredible how much they learn through play! Playing in the sandpit is an incredible tool to help them develop great skills that go beyond sensory learning.
There are basically no rules or instructions when playing with sand – children can dig around, build with it, pretend with it, sift it, and explore. Their imaginations can run wild.
Playing in the sandpit is not only a fun part of children playing, but a great way for them to learn many different skills.
Because playing with sand has no limits, children are free to determine their own way to play. This teaches kids how to make their own choices. From simply sitting and feeling the texture of the sand to building and creating games to play, if they can think it, they can do it with sand.
Children can manipulate the sand to make all different kind of shapes and even add water to see and feel how the texture changes and build things from ‘mud’. They are free to do whatever they want to.
As children feel the sand and see how it moves they will use their imagination to think of their own games and concepts. They can build lots of different things such as a city, a building or a sandcastle. Children can think of roles and stories for their creations. Other toys and various items such as buckets can be used to aid their imagination.
Muscles in the arms and upper body are developed through playing with sand. By digging around in the sandpit and making creations, children are using their muscles in different ways than usual.
Sand can become heavy if they are trying to move a lot of it, further exercising their muscle development. Children’s lower muscles in the legs get involved as well when they are squatting or sitting with their legs crossed.
Adding on to this, playing in the sandpit encourages hand-eye coordination skills to be developed with scoops and shovels. Children won’t even notice how much physical involvement and learning they are putting into playing in the sand because they’re having too much fun.
Playing in the sandpit is a great way for children to learn to be social and make friends. It will expose them to situations where they need to be problem-solvers, such as sharing toys with other children. It is also just a fun way for kids to make friends. They can talk to each other while making and playing with their creations or even come together to play.
Perhaps the most important of all of these skills is that kids enjoy themselves. Although kids are learning many beneficial skills whilst playing in the sandpit, a child having fun is the most important of them all!
Here at The Brook Early Education and Care Centre, we encourage the importance of play-based education and the skills it provides. At The Brook, we offer extracurricular activities that are included in the daily fee such as sports and dance.
Never underestimate a child’s play. Although it might look like simple leisure time when kids are fighting dragons, riding unicorns and making potions, they are actually developing crucial life skills and preparing their brains for the many challenges of adulthood.
Don’t hesitate to contact us for more information about our child care services.