Social and Emotional Skills through Play-Based Learning

HEYYY! ANDDD we're back with part two of our series on the psychological effects of play-based learning! If you did not get a chance to read the first blog, feel free to go back and read it! This blog post is part two, and we will be getting a little bit more serious. We are going to be talking about the social and emotional skills open-ended play has on a child. So again, sit back, relax, and enjoy the read!

Social and emotional skills are not necessary for kids' lives...SAID NO PARENT EVER! It is my personal belief that every child needs to develop social and emotional skills in their life. It creates a sense of community. They learn how to better get along, communicate better, and develop emotional competence and empathy. 

Everyone wants to feel like they have a sense of belonging in a community. Well, children have even more of a need for this when they are younger. Think about it...grow up in an environment where community is not the main factor. The relationships you develop as you get older will not be as strong or maybe as meaningful as you want them to be. Children are also able to create this sense by playing with each other. They are learning how to effectively communicate with each other through all the ups and downs. Whether it be them not wanting to share (which will typically be the most significant factor) or anything else. In communicating and talking, they start developing social skills that help them better communicate with each other. It helps them learn how to solve conflicts with each other when necessary or needed. 

So...I don't know about you, but I am not very confrontational. I do not like to get into arguments or disagreements; however, I will if I need to. I don't like the sense of strife that comes with arguments, BUT I do know you can't skate through life without them. But what I do know is that you grow stronger with that person in whatever happened through those times. You learn how to better communicate with them that way, situations like the one you're in can be prevented. You never stop learning, ever. Learning how to better and effectively communicate that I know I will be learning about for the rest of my life. You grow through what you go through. Just like how we can practice better communication, children are also able to. 

In my personal opinion, communication is such a vital key and asset to any type of relationship. It is a heavy foundation. When arguments or fights come up, especially with the little ones, they learn how to first process the emotional side of things. They are learning triggers and what affects their friends, and how to empathize with others. It's almost like a game. They learn how to test the waters in what they do to see how it will affect the other person. Not only are they learning about empathy, but they are also learning about sympathy. They are using words to communicate their needs, which is so important.

There are so many things that just go over our heads sometimes when it comes to play-based learning. We are so zoomed out on the picture that we only see our children playing, but once we take time to zoom in our lens, we can see what kind of impact it has on their lives. 

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