May is Children’s Mental Health Month, and, given the current COVID-19 crisis, keeping our family physically and mentally healthy is challenging during the time of social distancing. Although we all try to keep the stress of Coronavirus away from the kids, it is just as important to teach them how to revive stress as well. As parents and creators of children’s products for the home and classroom, we can’t advocate enough for playtime as a significant contributor to good mental health and the overall well-being of children everywhere.
An interesting article about simplicity parenting, points to this reduced playtime, as well as the sheer number of toys and distractions today’s childhood experiences, as a contributor to mental health issues. According to the article, protecting downtime, providing enough unstructured playtime for kids to completely immerse themselves in a single project or storyline, and limiting kids’ toys to those with true value and longevity has long-lasting benefits.
Imagination and Creativity
A well-developed imagination, or the ability to experience things that aren’t happening, is critical in the development of kids’ empathy and coping skills as well as their ability to resolve conflicts. Imagination can reduce anxiety by enabling kids to “see” happy endings to their situations. Open-ended engineering toys for girls and boys, like Brackitz, would allow kids to explore their creativity and indulge their imaginations and fantasies by actually, physically, creating what they see in their minds.
The ability to recognize a problem, brainstorm possible solutions, and attempt to solve the problem using one of those solutions is an immeasurably valuable tool in a child’s mental health toolbox. Providing practice solving any situation, from building a bridge to a math equation, boosts a child’s confidence in their ability to solve more significant problems as they grow.
“Research shows that self-expression is one of the best ways for you to relieve yourself of stress and anxiety in your day to day living.”. Among countless other benefits, the ability to express one’s thoughts and feelings provides an outlet for tension and stress. Blocks and construction toys like Brackitz are often included in Play Therapy sessions, as they allow children to express themselves without having to identify or articulate their thoughts and feelings.
Low self-esteem and the assumption that one will always fail can contribute to mental health issues over time. With no “right” answer, block play reduces the risk of failure and increases opportunities for success, resulting in increased self-esteem and confidence, critical components of good mental health.
Brackitz engineering toys are the only construction toys that let kids design any structure they can imagine - anything. In your home or your classroom, Brackitz unique, connect-anywhere Brackitz enables kids to create large scale, portable, 3-D structures – with no instructions or limitations – all while learning real-life math, science, engineering, and architecture skills.
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Stuck at home with the kids? Raining outside? Daycare closed? Don’t tell me, somebody locked the Grandparents away too!