Play is an indispensable part of childhood. It is as important to the overall growth and development of a child as sunlight and water is to a plant! Therefore play should be encouraged at every stage of childhood and in every way as one can. Play contributes to holistic all round development. Should you really encourage your child to play with LEGO and other bricks?
In times when gadgets have taken control of our lives and replaced our concept of family time and spending quality time with children it is really important to understand the importance of play. Children are overwhelmed with digital invasion in their lives. In times of the pandemic even school has become virtual experience. The parents worrying about screen time is understandable. The children are spending a great deal of their time on TV, tablets, laptops and phones! The smaller pleasures of early childhood like playing board games, doodling, colouring are alien to these children. Simply get bored is also unacceptable to this digitally distracted generation.
How did I start thinking about it?
As a parent I used to ponder ways to include play as an integral part of my child’s daily routine. I bought so much play material early on, from beads to stacking cups to jigsaw puzzles to blocks . Being blessed to be a student of child development and working in the field of early childhood education I utilized my knowledge and skills to ensure all that I studied was not just to preach but put to practice.
My child has shown proficiency in lots of activities indoors and outdoors but one activity he is absolutely amazing at is building LEGO! The seeds of this brilliant activity were sown at 2 years of age, when I got him his first blocks to build a train and he effortlessly learned it and wanted more! I continued with Jigsaw puzzles, mazes and I knew Lego should be next step. He got introduced to LEGO at age 4 and started on this amazing journey crossing each difficult level one after another with ease. Today at 8 years of age he is effortlessly building complex structures within days with over 4000 pieces with amazing zeal and enthusiasm. I am extremely happy with this hobby he has developed and continues to pursue.
So what exactly are the benefits of investing time and money in an activity like LEGO ! Should you really encourage the child to play with LEGO?
Let me just list down instead of making this longer…
- Cognitive/Intellectual development – building LEGO makes children learn very important cognitive skills namely Sorting, Grouping, Sequencing, Matching,One to one correspondence. These skills contribute tremendously towards mental alertness and develop brain. All these skills become very important in late childhood when children learn complex mathematical and Science concepts.
- Visual Discrimination
- Improves and increases attention Span
- Learns to sit at one place and do task. PATIENCE is indeed virtue.
- Logical Thinking
- Problem solving
- Able to follow instructions, read the diagram n follow instructions.
- Eye hand coordination
- Creative thinking
- Spatial ability
- Stress relief
- Sense of achievement and accomplishment.
- Satisfaction to have created something
- HAPPINESS immense.
- Bonding with family over a constructive activity.
So what are you waiting for? Take the phone/tablet out of your child’s hands and replace it with a set of blocks or Lego, look for online LEGO building ideas too.
Happy Building !
Blog by Apeksha Yagnik
– Sunday Bricks Parent