The four types of play, the six stages of play, the sixteen types of play! Independent play, sensory play, heuristic play… What does it all mean? Which one is best for your child?
Here’s a collection of our guides to all things play. We’ll show you which activities to offer your child – and when. We’ll look at toys and everyday materials. And we’ll see that the best approach is to simply set up the room for fun and exploration and get out of the way.
Become a creative self-starter who makes their own fun.
Heuristic play is discovery play. It’s how toddlers learn. It’s treasure basket play for mobile children. Offer interesting materials and leave your child to explore.
Before children learn to think symbolically, to represent ideas in their minds, they must learn what the world looks and feels and tastes like.
Small world play
Tell a story with figures and a simple setting. Whether it’s cardboard-box castle and wine-cork soldiers or a doll’s house with immaculate dolls, the game is the same. It’s life in miniature.
The four types of play
The six stages of play
The importance of play
Loose parts play
Invitations to play
Free flow play
Where will you play today? Indoors, outdoors, the kitchen or the bedroom? What will you choose? There are no rules. It’s up to you. It’s free-flow play.
As children enter the preschool years they move from sensorimotor play to the age of let’s pretend.
This banana is a cutlass, that wooden block is a racing car. I am a superhero! Symbolic play marks a leap in children’s development, from the here and now to pretend play.