Play is the way the child learns what no one can teach him. It is the way he explores and orients himself to the actual world of space and time of things animals’ structures and people. Through play he learns to live in our symbolic world of meanings and values of progressive striving for deformed goals, at the same time exploring and experimenting and learning in his own individualized way. Through play the child practices and rehearses endlessly the complicated and subtle patterns of human living and communication which he must master if he is to become a participating adult in our social life.
Facilitating of playfulness
Pamham suggested strategies that a therapist can use to create a playful atmosphere. The therapist should express a playful attitude through speech, body language and facial expressions. Also novelty and imaginary play should be used to facilitate playful participation in the part of the child. Mundy stated that the therapist must know how to play to be able to model play for the child. To develop playfulness, the child must develop intrinsic motivation, internal control, and ability to suspend reality, ability to give and read cues.
Facilitating playful interactions is important for any age child with and without a disability. Holloway suggested strategies to encourage playfulness in parents and children with in a neonatal intensive care unit. Helping parents learn to read their infants cues and adapt to the infant’s behavioural tempo helps to develop mutually positive processes as the infant matures. Whether the goal of therapy are to use play a medium, to develop play skills or to develop playfulness, planning interventions must always take in to account the interaction among the therapist, child and the equipment and play objects in the environment. The therapist needs to create a playful atmosphere and attitude for the child to respond playfully. Six abilities important to facilitating play in a child appear to be that the adult can;
- Apply theories of play
- Let go and let the child lead
- Display creativity.