The Benefits of Playgroup
All parents want to do what’s best for their children. Research tells us that connection, belonging and safety provide a solid foundation for healthy development and life-long learning. From the first days of life, connecting with a newborn baby through skin-to-skin contact and feeding will kick start a secure attachment process. We know the more we talk and sing to our newborn baby, their language acquisition will benefit.
How we connect and be present with our children at home can have a profound influence on our children’s development. Stepping outside our home and finding an activity that both your child and you can enjoy will provide early moments where children can find confidence in themselves.
Playgroup offers a unique opportunity for enhancing all domains of development.
The market is saturated with opportunities for community-based activities to support children’s development. The number of options can be overwhelming, and parents can be left with many questions including “what is the best thing for my baby/child?” and “what is the best value for money as some of these activities are so expensive?”.
Children are able to explore and navigate the environment around them in a safe space, with their parent/caregiver nearby. The magic of playgroup reveals itself to children with many opportunities to experiment through new and exciting activities for their development. From sensory play with gloop or playdough, to a range of arts and crafts, kicking a ball outside, or dressing up and pretending to be a character - children have so much fun at playgroup.
With so many products that come to our attention as parents, it can feel overwhelming and be easy to forget that the most important thing we can do to support our children’s development is free; finding time to connect with our children. Being truly present and connected will create a sense of safety for children, and the rest will flow from there.
Playgroup offers the best opportunity for free, unstructured play, where children will find their identity in community and explore the wonder that is the world around them.
Words: Craig Bradbrook
Craig is the CEO of Playgroup SA
Originally published in Connected Caregiving Summer 2023