Views: 50 Author: Carpenterworm-Rouyi Publish Time: 2018-05-11 Origin: Site Inquire
The Shasta Children and Families First Commission (SCFFC) has funded several projects which in part or whole create playgrounds for young children aged 0-5. Each of these playgrounds will be developed separately with local community input, but share several fundamental characteristics. Each will be created in a safe, fenced area and will contain various play equipment which meets state safety standards, all specifically designed for very young children. The Commission is interested in how these playgrounds will impact the healthy development of these children. However, the development of evaluation research plans which might directly measure this impact were judged to be impractical. This is because such a research plan would involve trying to observe and measure physical, social, and intellectual changes in children who used the playgrounds and then attribute these changes only to playground use. This type of study would be clearly beyond the financial resources of the Commission and would require intensive intervention in the lives of these young children.
Play and Free Play
Playgrounds provide an opportunity for free play. Free play differs from the structured play of recess or organized sports and games. Playground free play allows children to play any way they choose, supported by a wide range of structures and spaces. Free play allows the child to explore according to his or her natural tendencies, and allows them to learn from one another and to interact with a wide range of age groups.
Playground play structures help facilitate a child’s cognitive development during free play because toddlers are at a sensor-motor stage of development and they learn through their sensory impression and motor activities and the interaction of the two.Playgrounds provide a space for children to enrich, build, and expand their cognitive development through play.
Playgrounds provide critical space for children to be given opportunities to move and be encouraged to advance into the next stage of development, because through play they can develop advanced fine motor and manipulation skills.The lack of physical fitness among children poses a danger to their health as adults, and playground equipment is one avenue to promote physical activity of children.
Language Development, Intelligence, and Social Skills
Play is the primary vehicle for development of the imagination, intelligence, and language.The playground maximizes opportunities to engage in a greater amount of play with their peers. The interaction with their peers allows children to express ideas and feelings and develop oral skills.Play structures promote social play because they provide children with places to congregate and communicate. Through the act of playing they learn social and cultural rules, and experiment with various emotions, and explore the socially shared system of symbols. By playing they also learn by physical and mental trial-and-error, through interaction with their environment and peers, the ability to discriminate between relevant and irrelevant information.Simply put, a shortage of playgrounds can add to children’s passivity.