How Play Helps Children Cooperate

As I’ve written about before, play is so much more than meaningless fun for kids.

Just as independent play is an important part of your child’s development, play with you facilitates a greater bond between you and your child, and deepens his trust in you. 

Play is one of the main ways our kids connect with us—their most important grownups. It offers your child some of the warmth and closeness he needs a good healthy dose of daily.

In addition to all of these benefits, play is also an amazing tool to help increase our kids’ cooperation, improve their behavior, and decrease the struggle that we often face with everyday tasks.

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How to Get Your Kid to Play Without You (and Why You Should)

I often say to parents that play is like the blood that runs through your child’s veins. He absolutely thrives on it—in fact he needs it to grow, develop, understand the world, and process his experiences.

 Play helps your child discover what he can do, as well as what he can’t (yet) do. It gives him a chance to experiment (will this ball fit into this container? How about this one?), to practice building his skills (if I jump off this sidewalk 100 more times, I will do it without stumbling!), and through this process of discovery, experimentation, and practice, develop his self-confidence.

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From Play Yards to Yes Spaces: Creating a Safe Play Space for Your Child

New parents often tell me that they struggle to get any kind of self-care once their baby arrives. I can relate—after my son was born I felt totally disconnected from the habits that had nurtured me before his arrival.

Here’s a little secret. One of the best things you can do for your young baby also comes with a bonus: it’s self-care for you, too.

That thing that is so good for both of you is simple (and yes, hard too): put your baby down.

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