New Year Greetings & the Importance of Play for Children

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Hannah is pictured in front of a small square building with a clock tower on top.

Hello everybody, I hope you all had a lovely Christmas. I hope you all got time to relax and enjoy the festive period. I hope you had fun with family and enjoyed some tasty Christmas dinner. I hope you all got to share nice Christmas memories with relatives both near and far. I hope you got time to reflect on your achievements of 2023, achievements within your family, achievements within your circle of friends. I hope you got time to reflect on any challenges you may have overcome and I hope you got time to reflect on your hopes for 2024, both for yourself and your family. For those of you who may have found Christmas a difficult time, I hope you can find strength, love and comfort to feel optimistic about the year ahead.

Today I would like to talk about the importance of play in a child’s development. The definition of play is a method used to analyze children’s emotional and behavioral lives. I recently read a quote “you can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation”. I do think this quote has a lot to say about the role of play and its long term impact, particularly on children, children who may have communication difficulties, as well as children and young people who may simply lack in self confidence. Play is certainly a meaningful form of self expression. 

Play Therapy can be particularly beneficial because it is person-centred and it is a natural way to promote engagement in children whilst making them feel at ease. Helping children to feel at ease is vital because when children are very young, their minds are in a period of ongoing development and it can be very difficult to understand the challenges and changes life may bring in different angels. Therefore I personally believe that play therapy can be a form of intervention for children’s future wellbeing and is an excellent way to set children up with the skills to deal with life challenges.

A number of places offer play therapy services, including community family resource centres and also at Crann, who have a qualified play therapist named Orlaith. I think play therapy is a brilliant service and I hope to see it implemented in more centres as well as schools in the future.

I hope you enjoyed my article.

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