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Building Social Skills With Playtime

Building Social Skills With Playtime

Gosford Park Primary School-12Playtime is traditionally seen as a chance to give children a break from the classroom. It is designed to help children burn off excess energy so that they can once again focus on their lessons. However modern thinking sees playtime as much more than just a break from the classroom. Children are building social skills with playtime.

Away from the structure of the classroom and with minimal adult supervision, it is during playtime that children learn to interact with their peers. Making friends, resolving conflicts, and working as teams, it all happens in the playground! And these social skills will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

Playground games

One of the ways playtime has traditionally helped children to build social skills is through playground games. We all remember these games from childhood and while at the time they just seemed like fun, in reality they helped us to learn how to organise ourselves into teams. As well as this, they teach children how to set out rules and follow them. And without being dictated to by adults!

There are ways you can encourage children to set up traditional playground games; for example ensuring that playground surfaces have markings that are ideal for these games. In addition to this, you can install sports and game equipment into playgrounds. They help encourage children to take the initiative and set up their own games at playtime.

Adventure play

Installing adventure equipment into playgrounds helps to fire children’s imaginations. Fitness and adventure trails also encourage children to learn about teamwork and cooperation. Multi-play units, for example ones that include slides, climbing frames and bridges, encourage children to help each other. They also encourage children to inspire each other, try new games and face fears. We supply a range of adventure equipment from tunnels to large multi-play units. Meaning it’s easier for you to find the right equipment to encourage children’s social skills. No matter the size of your playground or your budget!

Relax and talk

Developing children’s social skills does not always need to happen through play. Installing outdoor furniture that allows children to have a place to relax and talk also encourages the development of these skills. Outdoor seating areas do not need to be boring and can now include benches in the shape of logs and picnic tables that incorporate board games. There is also the opportunity to install undercover seating areas that provide shade in summer and shelter in winter.

Giving children a place to sit means that they have the chance to talk about their interests, families and hobbies; essentially helping them to build friendships away from the direct supervision of adults. This also helps children to build confidence and independence in communicating with their peers, a skill that they need to learn at this time of their childhood to help them establish friendships when they become older.

For more information, contact us today!