Last week we were invited by to a Fisher-Price event in London at the Prima Baby Magazine headquarters. The purpose of the event was for Fisher-Price to share with us some information about the psychology behind play and launch their ‘Discover Your Way’ campaign, a celebration of all the different ways that children develop through play.
It was lovely to meet up with our blogging friends and Fisher-Price even had a children’s entertainer and a nanny, so us mums could listen to the presentation in peace. The presentation was led by Susie Boone from Madeformums.com and Dr David Whitebread from the University of Cambridge. They discussed the findings of the survey, which was conducted earlier in the year by Fisher-Price and Madeformums.com and child led play in general. Here are the main findings.
I am guilty of worrying about how much time Baby plays alone and it seems from the survey that I am not alone. Dr Whitebread discussed the types of play (physical, play with objects, symbolic, pretence play and play with rules) and the benefits of children playing alone, in ‘free play’. Dr Whitebread stressed that when we do play with our children, we should be sure not to put our own agenda on the play and let the children lead it. Children who engage in ‘free play/child-initiated play’ go on to develop better resilience, social skills, self reliance and self-regulation. This type of play is in fact vital for learning and cognitive well being.
Fisher-Price know through their experience that children are happiest when they developing at their own pace and so they have launched ‘Smart Stages’, toys that evolve as your baby grows. These highly innovative toys allow parent’s to input their child’s age, so that the toy provides content updates appropriate to the age of the child, so the toy really does grow with your baby. These Laugh and Learn toys (which feature Smart Stages) cater for your children from 6-36 months, as the toy stays fresh with the updates. Have a look here at which toys include Smart Stages.
I would like to thank Fisher-Price for a wonderful event and the chance to learn more about their products and the psychology of play.