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Play is the child's work

Play is the child's work

Alexis Ralphs Sep 13 • 7 min read

Play is the child's work, or so it is said. But how much, and for how long? Formal schooling doesn't begin until seven in many countries in stark contrast to the early focus on reading and writing we have here in the UK. Are our children missing out? Is our approach wholly negative?

Perhaps you know of a child who would have benefited from an extra year of play. Maybe they were diagnosed with learning difficulties when all they needed was another year to mature. What a shame that a bright child, so young and enthusiastic could be branded a failure - a stigma that can last a lifetime.

But what of the child who arrives at school able to read and write? Doesn't she also deserve to be somewhere that stimulates and challenges her?

The system is not going to change anytime soon. We can disagree with it. We can even fight it. But for our children who have started school this month, we also have to accept it.

If schools won't offer the experiences our children need, we must provide them ourselves.

What could you to to keep the spark of play and creativity alive at home?

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