This is the perfect week to join in with Playcentre, as they delve into an array of messy play offerings, from paint, playdough, sand and clay, to slime and gloop. Try all the sensory materials that are so much fun for young children, and offer limitless opportunities for learning.
This is the kind of play where children grow their capacity to concentrate, develop hand-eye coordination, expand their communication skills, and learn about different materials and textures. With minds that are naturally curious and hands eager to explore, messy play is satisfying and inspiring for youngsters. A lot of parents find the mess hard to cope with in their own home, so this is your chance to explore the benefits alongside your child, with a range of sensory activities they’re sure to love.
The benefits of Messy Play
Messy play is an essential part of early childhood development. With opportunities to explore different sensory materials, your child will discover new ways to express themselves, and as a result develop confidence in and control of their bodies. There is no “right way” with messy play. Studies show that the benefits for development lie in the open-ended nature of play, as children follow their own creative processes, practise new skills, solve problems, and share with others the wonder of exploring with their senses.
5 benefits of messy play at Playcentre for children
1. Promises “BIG” fun
For children, messy play is liberating, fun and fully absorbing. Naturally curious, children show high levels of concentration and engagement as they explore with their senses, which heightens their learning experience. From a child’s perspective, messy play is magical – full of excitement and pure joy.
2. Stimulates creativity
Messy play stimulates children’s curiosity, fuels their imaginations and offers new outlets for self-expression. Different materials and tools present new challenges and ideas, and through exploration and experimentation, children develop confidence and self-esteem.
3. Promotes physical development
As children explore with their hands and try out new tools and instruments, they develop their fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Through practising and mastering new skills, they gain confidence in and control of their bodies.
4. Encourages communication and social skills
Messy play supports positive interactions. When children share their sensory experience with others, they’re encouraged to tell stories, take turns, negotiate, explain ideas and bond over their shared fun. These interactions support language development and social skills.
5. Provides new experiences
Messy play provides new sensory experiences. Through open-ended exploration, children learn about different materials and their properties, and investigate how substances can be mixed, manipulated and changed.
5 benefits of messy play at Playcentre for adults
1. Strengthens your connection
Messy play offers an opportunity to forget about the washing and dishes, and to play and bond with your child. By saying yes to messy play, you’re offering your child an experience that is fun and inspiring, and they will love sharing it with you.
2.Offers fun and relaxation
Messy play can be relaxing as well as liberating for adults, because with household demands put aside, rolling playdough beneath your hands or sculpting with kinetic sand can be a calming exercise. Messy play is also an opportunity to ‘let go’ and have fun by making swirls with finger paint or dipping your toes into slime.
3. Presents new ideas
Exploring a range of messy play activities is inspiring for adults, as they see the fun and learning that even the simplest materials can provide, and pick up new ideas to try at home.
4. Allows you to socialise
With your child absorbed in the play, here is an opportunity for you to connect with other adults. It’s a a chance to talk and laugh together and, if you like, get messy!
5. The mess isn’t at your house!
The paint stains won’t be on your curtains and the playdough won’t be stuck in your carpet, so there’s no reason not to embrace messy play. Of course, you may be inspired to try it out again when you get home.
Thanks to our friends at Playcentre for inspiring us with all the important benefits of playing with paint, sand, gloop, clay and other wonderful sensory materials. May the messy play begin…