Water Play at Kingsgate – Huge Learning Benefits!

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Everything we do at Kingsgate is purposeful! All play is purposeful!
YES, we play with water! Look at this list of learning benefits!

1. Water Play Releases Energy

Children can find water play both calming or invigorating depending on the activity being presented. Vigorous splashing and kicking and running around in the water can be an excellent outlet for pent up energy. A great way for kids to have fun and let off steam!

2. Emotionally Therapeutic Water Play

Water play doesn’t have to be loud and busy, it can be a tranquil activity where children are quietly absorbed. A bit like losing yourself in a colouring page, children benefit from the relaxing and repetitive nature of scooping, pouring and running their hands through the water. Much like grown ups enjoying relaxing in a warm bath, children can lose themselves in the physical repetition of gentle water play, allowing them to unwind, order their thoughts and relax.

3. Develop Motor Skills With Water Play

Water play gives many opportunities to develop gross and fine motor skills across the age ranges. You only have to look at a young baby when they are shown water pouring in front of them, they will reach out to feel the trickle and try to capture the flow with whole hand grasps and then with early pincer grip movements and so the development continues to grow as they do.

Fine motor skills and hand and eye coordination are constantly refined as children scoop and pour water and fill and empty containers in a multitude of different ways.

Gross motor skills and large muscle strength is developed and stretched as children are encouraged to carry and pour larger and heavier pots and buckets of water. The opportunity to use a wading pool or to go swimming is a fantastic way to develop core strength and co-ordination and stamina across all the large motor groups as children kick, splash and sweep their arms and hands through the water.

4. Develop Social Skills Through Water Play

Water play gives many opportunities for children to develop crucial social skills when they are working with just one other child or a whole group. It is a great way for children to learn to share and take turns as they share the physical space and the play items in the water.

Water play can be an avenue for children to take their first steps from “playing alongside someone” to actually “playing with someone” as they follow other children’s ideas and join in with them, or likewise initiate an idea themselves. It could be a simple task like working together to fill a bucket with scoops of water from small cups. This team work and co-operation are important steps to developing the skills needed for friendships in the future.

5. Building Language And Communication With Water Play

Water play is so versatile you can add pretty much any play items to it, be it dinosaurs and mud for a swamp or cars, sponges and bubbles for a car wash, the possibilities are endless! Of course each new way of playing with water brings with it new vocabulary choices for all the play items and play scenarios involved, as such, it is a fantastic resource for building new vocabulary.

As well as developing lots of new vocabulary children can practise communication and language skills as they play with water. Even when playing alone young children will often narrate the play situation out loud, practising stringing words together and building sentence structure. When playing with or alongside others children can practise turn taking and listening in conversations too.

6. Water Play Can Stimulate Creativity and Imagination

We’ve already chatted about the versatility of water play in Language and Communication above, as parents and early years practitioners we can use this versatility to provide rich and valuable play experiences to develop and stretch children’s imagination and creativity.

CEO and Education Expert, Greg Parry

Internationally renowned for his expertise in education leadership, Greg Parry’s vast experience includes leadership of projects for edu-cation institutions throughout Australia, the Middle East, the United States, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and China. Recognised for his numerous contributions in the education arena, Greg has received the Ministers Award for Excellence in School Leadership based on improvements in school performance and a range of successful principal training and leadership development programs, as well as the School of Excellence Award for Industry/School Partnerships and the School of Excellence Award for Technology Innovation. His company GSE (Global Services in Education) has been recognised as having the Best Global Brand in International Education 2015 and 2016.

Considered one of the premier experts in his profession, Greg has trained teachers and principals throughout the world in areas such as critical thinking, language development and leadership. His expertise in school start up projects, leadership and curriculum development, has made him a sought after authority in these disciplines.

www.gsineducation.com | www.kingsgate.edu.my | @KingsgateInternationalSchool