CommunicationOut and AboutPlay

How to make everyday play more engaging


By Sarah McInnes, Early Childhood Teacher

Many psychologists have written about the importance of rich learning experiences for young children. And when they can explore the world in a safe, supportive environment and are motivated and interested in the experience, they will learn and develop.

As an Early Start Denver Model therapist, we place a lot of importance on repeating activities, adapting actions and elaborating on them. This especially relates for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, as children can observe and imitate the adult playing with toys and begin to play with toys in new and different schemes.

This makes play a wonderful learning opportunity for children where they can learn functional skills. 

Tactile and sensory social activities in early childhood are a great way for children to explore their world and learn many different skills.

Examples of tactile experiences where children can use their senses to explore and understand include:

  • sand and water play
  • playdough
  • clay
  • sensory / discovery bottles filled with water/sand and small trinkets
  • freezing water with animals inside
  • shaving foam
  • rice and pasta

Sensory social activities that encourage social exchanges are great opportunities to develop lots of different skills, such as:

  • reading books
  • singing songs
  • participating in finger play songs
  • puppet play
  • trampoline
  • therapy ball

Help your child explore the world around them through fun and engaging play activities.

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