5 Ways to Practice Playful Parenting


Playing is an innate part of childhood that especially comes naturally to young kids. Children engage in play not only for fun but also as a means to learning and exploring the world around them. However, for busy parents trying to strike a balance between the demands of work and home, play can often be the last thing on our minds. But what if you were told that “playful parenting” actually plays an important role in the formation of a deeper bond between you and your child? Making time for playful parenting can also help to lighten the mood in a stressful home as it creates a positive atmosphere. Perhaps you recognize the importance of incorporating play into the time you spend with your child, but you just don’t know where to start.

Many parents find it challenging to interact on their child’s level and engage in fun play together. If you find yourself caught in this dilemma, you’re not alone. Read on and learn some helpful tips to practice playful parenting in your home.

Begin the day with play

One of the first things that comes into  the mind of a young child the moment he or she opens his or her eyes in the morning is playing. Young children may immediately think about their toys and the games they plan to play throughout the day. Just thinking about the fun that awaits them often makes them giddy and excited. But who says children are the only ones who can benefit from play? Starting the day being playful with your child can help energize you and set a positive tone for the rest of the day. 

Make it a habit to start your day with your child  by incorporating time for play. It doesn’t have to be a lengthy session of play. It can be quick, even while you’re preparing breakfast. Or you may spend a few minutes taking your little one outside for some quick outdoor play while enjoying some sunshine. It’s not difficult to incorporate a little playtime into your morning routine. In no time you’ll see that it can work wonders!

Dedicate a time for play

If it’s impossible to engage in a little playtime in the morning, try to find a different time or hour you can dedicate to playing with your little one.. Allocate a 30-minute or even one-hour window for some playful bonding time with your child. You can be spontaneous as you come up with different games to play… or better yet, encourage your little one to spearhead the planning!

Let young children come up with a list of games you can play together, as well as the toys and supplies that will be needed. Allowing them the chance to do the planning and make choices is highly beneficial to the relationship between you and your child. One of the only times you should be involved in directing the activity is when safety is a factor. Otherwise, have fun channeling the inner child in you as you engage and enjoy this precious bonding activity with your little one!

Use dolls and puppets

Many young kids like to use dolls or puppets in their pretend play. They also respond well when these types of toys are incorporated into playtime  because it can stimulate their imagination and spark their creativity. Don’t be afraid to be silly when playing with puppets! Have fun as you develop silly and interesting characters that make play time more fun and exciting! You can be goofy and use different voices to represent each character, which also makes it easier for your child to distinguish between characters.

Turn mundane tasks into fun games

Do you find it challenging to squeeze playtime into your extremely busy day? You can make household chores and routine tasks more fun by incorporating play. For example, you can turn collecting clothes from the clothesline into a race! Or perhaps put on upbeat music in the background while you clean around the house so you and your little one can sing and dance as you tidy up!

Not only is incorporating fun play into household tasks an excellent way to make something that is typically boring and tiring lighter and more fun. It can also be a terrific way to teach young kids about household chores. 

Revisit classic games

Some classic games from our own youth never get old! Take a trip down memory lane and recall some of your favorite games from your own childhood. Which games did you enjoy most? Now is a perfect time to introduce these activities to your kids and play them together!

Playful parenting can benefit your kids and the whole family in many ways. Follow these tips to help you jumpstart your journey through playful parenting with your little one

For more helpful resources on parenting, or if you’re looking for a great preschool for your child, please visit Imagine Nation Learning Center


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