Through a range of interactions with children at different social stages, children also learn to use moral reasoning to develop a mature sense of values. To be prepared to function effectively in the adult world, children need to participate in lots of social situations. Constructive play is when children manipulate their environment to create things.
This type of play occurs when children build towers and cities with blocks, play in the sand, construct contraptions on the woodworking bench, and draw murals with chalk on the sidewalk. It also gives children a sense of accomplishment and empowers them with control of their environment. Children who are comfortable manipulating objects and materials also become good at manipulating words, ideas and concepts. Children learn to abstract, to try out new roles and possible situations, and to experiment with language and emotions with fantasy play.
In addition, children develop flexible thinking; learn to create beyond the here and now; stretch their imaginations, use new words and word combinations in a risk-free environment, and use numbers and words to express ideas, concepts, dreams, and histories.
In an ever-more technological society, lots of practice with all forms of abstraction — time, place, amount, symbols, words, and ideas — is essential. Developmentally, most children progress from an egocentric view of the world to an understanding of the importance of social contracts and rules. Part of this development occurs as they learn that games like Follow the Leader, Red Rover, Simon Says, baseball and soccer cannot function without everyone adhering to the same set of rules.
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Social-Emotional Development Domain - Child Development (CA Dept of Education)
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Understanding Child Development
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The Development Of Play (Concepts in Developmental Psychology)
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Play and Learning Developmental Psychology 1. Hughes, , p. PLAY Play is a spontaneous, voluntary , pleasurable and flexible activity involving a combination of body, object, symbol use and relationships Disorganized, for own sake A legitimate right An opportunity to engage and learn Creativity Essential for education Social learning skills, express possible stress 6.