How many times have you heard a parent say he or she spends too much time on that thing? This is particularly true of the older child and the game systems and the games they play and play and play. Today even the younger child is a part of this culture as well. However, I am not talking about this in particular.
The focus of this article is about how a child feels when he succeeds when learning to play a game. How does he feel about himself? What does it do for his self esteem?
Have you ever watched even a very small chilld when he becomes aware of putting the ball in the right place and the music plays indicating that the child did it right? What does he do? He smiles or laughs and/or claps his hands and looks at the adults for their approval. This should tell you that the child knows he did it right and he feels good about it. His self esteem soars and he wants to try it again and hopes it will happen again. This makes him want to do more and more and more. He likes feeling this way and wants more of it.
When playing with some of the toys the child learns by trial and error and eventually sees the connection between this and rewards that he gets when he is correct. How does this happen he may think. Problem solving is probably involved to find the correct route to get those rewards. If one solution doesn’t work, then reevaluation of the problem and possible solutions will result in him finding another possible answer. When he tries that one maybe the reward will reinforce his techniques and the process has begun.
What happens then? How does he feel about himself? The answer seems to be obvious. He is learning to think and solve problems on his own and his self esteem soars. He now sees himself as a more independent and capable being which as he gets older opens a lot of doors for him.
Toys are not just entertainment and fun things. They help in the development of many skills, such as fine motor skills and gross motor skills, and the development of their self esteem and their knowledge that they can acheive whatever they choose to do. This speaks volumes so the next time your child is playing look at it from a broader spectrum and support them in this.