We use our senses all the time, consciously or not. Many of our memories are triggered by our senses - the whiff of our favourite meal or the tune of a familiar song will transports us down memory lane to various points in our lives.
The sames goes for children, especially through early childhood as they touch and move, taste, smell, see and hear to explore the world around them. How is sensory play beneficial to children?
1. Brain development
Sensory play provides opportunities for children to develop their brains through creating and making connections in the brains pathways. Research shows that this contributes to developing the child's ability to complete complex tasks in language development, motor skills, social interaction and problem solving skills.
2. Aids in concentration
Sensory activities also allow children to refine their thresholds for different sensory information. When a child first engages in play, he/she may be distracted by the various things happening around them - movement, sights, noises etc.
Through sensory play, the child can learn to block out the noise which is not important and focus on the play which is occurring with their peer.
3. Therapeutic play
Sensory play can be therapeutic, by introducing calming tactile and visual stimuli to soothe or distract agitate children. This type of sensory play is calming for kids, as it helps them regulate their internal discomfort, whether that discomfort was boredom, restlessness, or some other type of agitation. Playing also breeds a sense of familiarity, easing the children into unfamiliar territory. Slowly, they gain confidence in navigating an otherwise unfamiliar object, texture, taste environment, which could be a source of discomfort.
All our subscription boxes are equipped with materials and ideas for sensory play. For example, the Farmhouse box is chock full of sensory play ideas - from pigs bathing in mud (taste-safe, mind you!) to calming bath time. Check it out today!