In the early stages of childhood, Children mostly depend on senses like touching, seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling and lastly moving to make sense of the world around them. They create a memory that can last long and often create a feeling of nostalgia or flashbacks when you sense similar things in the future for instance a song which you heard in your childhood will automatically get saved in your brain so wherever in future you hear the same song again your brain will trigger old special memories of your childhood around connected around that song.
The first six-year of childhood is extremely important for brain development as mostly these are the years where children consume information, gain knowledge and make a sense about themselves and the environment around them so the children should be provided with opportunities where they can actively use their senses using sensory play to explore their world. Sensory Play has a vital role in brain development as it creates a nerve connection in brain pathways helping children in learning languages, finishing complex task, developing problem-solving skills or even enhancing social interaction.
What are Sensory Plays
Sensory play simply means activity/task that enhances or stimulates the child’s senses like taste, smell, touch, balance, movement, hearing and lastly sight. Sensory play enhances the ability of children to use their brain efficiently in order to complete the task. Parents can just use simple sensory play activities like clay modelling, drawing etc this will enhance their creativity and give them the freedom to experiment with new things. Sensory activities create an environment of exploration where children naturally get encouraged to use scientific processes and techniques while they simply explore, play, create and investigate.
Importance of Sensory Play in Child Development
1 – Language Development
“ Sensory play “ plays a huge part in the language development of the child as children learn to express themselves by describing what they are touching, smelling, hearing, seeing and etc for this they observe the instructions of their parents or focus on specific words they are saying while mentioning things like water, sun, Tv, toy, bottle, hot, cold and etc children pay attention to these words and started to use the specific word to describe things. Sensory play enhances the vocabulary of the child which helps them to understand and speak the language.
2 – Develop Problem Solving Skills
Sensory play helps children to develop problem-solving skills as the task or activities required children to solve or tackle a problem using their brain like a game of puzzle or fitting shaped object in a box this type of activities forces children to use their brain in a way to solve a problem and finds a way to overcome the obstacles, they tend to try to use different techniques in order to complete the task, this will enhance their critical thinking ability and help them develop problem-solving skills at a very young age which will help them throughout their life.
3 – Cognitive Growth
Sensory play supports children’s cognitive growth as they explore the world around them using their senses this will enhance their thought process, Reasoning and Understanding. When a child receives new knowledge through sensory play they are able to process the information and Understand the new concepts and brain able to store that information which will be them throughout their life. Simple Sensory plays like catching a ball can help children in developing and enhancing hand-eye coordination.
4 – FINE MOTOR SKILL DEVELOPMENT
Sensory play is important to develop fine motor skills as there are generally two types of motor skills first one is the fine motor skills which only require a small muscle group to perform a task like writing, shoe tying, buttoning etc on the other hand sensory plays develop the second type of motor skills which is Gross motor skills in this children uses a large muscle group in order to perform the task it mostly includes the activities like running, walking, jumping etc.
Sensory play not only focuses on mind development but also helps children in physical development using a bunch of activities.
5 – Develop and Enhance Memory
“ Sensory plays” have a huge impact on a child’s brain development as whatever activities they perform they grasp the knowledge quicker, as the information retention is pretty high in childhood so these type of useful activities like drawing, clay modelling, sound learning, mental maths learning or etc can enhance brain development as well as improves the memory of the child and them able to recall the information quicker due to their deep understanding of the activity.