Playing is how pre-schoolers learn, experiment and solve problems. In fact, play is vital for overall development and wellbeing. Pre-schoolers love to play with parents and other children, and playing with others teaches them about social relations, sharing and taking turns. Here are some fun play ideas and games for pre-schoolers.
Play and games for pre-schoolers: what to expect
Generally, pre-schoolers love:
Many pre-schoolers enjoy rough-and-tumble play and the opportunities it gives them to test out strength, space and social relationships. But play is meant to be fun – if a child is being bullied, forced or hurt, it isn’t play anymore.
Pre-schooler play and games with others
By four years, your child will be much more interested in playing with other children and making up games together. He might be better at sharing and taking turns, but he’ll still need your support and encouragement.
At five years, children are much more aware of their place in the world and are keen to fit in. As a general rule, your child wants to follow the rules at home and at pre-school or school. She might even like to be part of making the rules.
Most pre-schoolers understand that other people have feelings too, and are beginning to develop empathy.
Family and home are still at the centre of your child’s world, and you’re still the most important person in your pre-schooler’s life. That’s why play with you is still very high on the list of things your child wants and needs to do.
Play ideas and games for pre-schoolers
All children are unique. They all have their own interests and ways they learn best. What one child might enjoy, another child might not. That’s why it’s important to follow your child’s interests when it comes to games for pre-schoolers. You can play along with your pre-schooler, just in a more supportive role.
Here are some play ideas to get you and your pre-schooler going:
Other playthings include playdough, sand, plastic containers or any household boxes with lids, plastic eating utensils, kitchen pots and pans (with smooth edges), Duplo, simple puzzles, jigsaws and coloured blocks.
Video: Play and learning with preschoolers (3-5 years)
Watch this video and learn tips on how to engage and play with your preschooler.
Playing with pasta pieces, especially macaroni, can be an excellent way to boost your child's acquisition of fine motor skills!