By Child Therapy Chicago's guest blogger from Lekotek
The pressures of school can be tough on kids, especially those with special needs. Play can help children relax, recharge their batteries and take on new challenges.
It’s hard to remember a time when kids had more stress in their lives. Schools are forced to pressure children more and more to pass tests to keep their stream of funding. Our educational system is also under mounting pressure as the global ranking for America’s schools continues to trend downward. Homework has trended upward with little impact.
What research has proven again and again is that kids learn best through play. Guided play advances cognitive skills like language, as well as social skills such as emotional regulation. Group play experiences also greatly impact a child’s coping abilities, empathy, mood and resiliency. Despite evidence linking play to development, parents, educators and policy makers have allowed children’s play time to drastically erode in the last two decades.
Play functions as an antidote to the pressures of life, including school anxiety. Here are some product ideas to help kids defuse stress and refresh their bodies. These suggestions are especially beneficial for children with special needs who have their share of school struggles: