There has been an abundance of research around play and its positive effects on early childhood learning and development. In general, research shows strong links between creative play and language, physical, cognitive, and social development. Play is a healthy, essential part of childhood. Infants explore their world through their senses while adults in their world foster their development and learning through playing games with them. Toddlers engage in pretend play when they imitate actions and events they have experienced in their family life. As they grow into four and five year olds, young children engage more and more in play activities that expand their knowledge of the world around them, develop their motor skills, and focus on their peers.
For more information on the research around the importance of play, please read the Literature Review (497 KB) prepared by the Early Childhood Learning Division, Department of Education and Early Childhood Education, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. You may also find the following articles, resources and videos of interest.
Adobe® Acrobat® Reader software can be used for viewing PDF documents. Download Acrobat® Reader for free .