Five Tips Friday: Playing with your child

Playtime benefits children in many ways. It helps them develop new skills, and use their imagination. While we make an effort to encourage our kids to play independently (which is a good thing), it's not a bad idea to sit down and play with them when you can.

You may do it frequently with babies and toddlers, but I think any child who likes playing would benefit from Mom or Dad joining in the game. One of the things kids appreciate the most is your time. And what better way to give it to them than by doing something they love?

Benefits of playing with your child, and tips for making it special.

Here are some yips for playing with your child, and making it count:

1. Make an effort

Don't feel guilty if the game or toy doesn't interest you. I mean, you can only play with racing car tracks so many times! But think about the happiness it brings your child, and make a special effort to take an interest. Put away any distractions, and try to find out what excites your child about playing something they like.

2. Be creative and involved

Come up with ways to make the game more fun. For instance, when I'm playing with a toy train with my toddler, I help him make tunnels with whatever I can find. Your child will appreciate your input and 'expertise' as an adult in making playtime even better.

3. Move around

It's the best thing when you get up to play and run around with your kids. Rediscover classic games such as hide and seek or tag! There really is no age limit to this. Apart from the benefits of physical movements, you will really cherish these memories forever.

4. Create a new game

How about making up a new game that you can play together? It could be something as simple as building a special fort, or just using your imagination to go to far off places. Your child will really look forward to playing with your game.

5. Do it often

Try to play with your child every day if you can, even if for a little while. It really is worth making time for. Let play become a part of your relationship with your child.

Five Tips Friday is a series of posts on five quick tips 
about parenting, blogging, social media, travel, or just about anything!

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