Advice from a Professional Child Care Centre
Ask anyone, and they’ll tell you—it certainly does seem that kids used to be more active. Then again, when we were growing up, there were fewer alternatives to choose from. It was get outside and play, read a book, or be bored. Now, there are video games, the internet, favourite TV shows on demand, and for school children, more homework than ever. An hour of TV or Xbox never hurt anyone, but it’s more important than ever to promote children to engage in physical activity. Whether by taking them to a children’s playground or signing them up for a sports team, there are endless ways to get your children to be more active. And from Orleans to Barrhaven, child care centres in the Ottawa valley feature programs that emphasize healthy, active play. So just what are the benefits for your children?
Among babies, toddlers, and preschool children, active play is an important factor in ensuring healthy development. These formative years really are quite important, and the more you can help your child along, the better. Physical activity at a young age shouldn’t be strenuous, but the right amount can make a huge difference in the development of healthy bones and muscles, hand-eye coordination, fine and gross motor skills, and of course get them a head start on developing life-long healthy habits. And when you let them play with other children, such as at a Barrhaven child care centre, it also helps develop important social skills.
For children of any age—and for that matter, adults!—physical activity has a number of incredible health benefits. Children at a playground aren’t just having fun. They are strengthening their hearts and lungs, promoting good circulation, reducing blood sugar (and with it, the risk of diabetes) and even improving their own emotional well-being—it has often been demonstrated that children who are more active are also happier, more confident, and have much less anxiety and stress.
Already we’ve mentioned how physical activity has emotional and social benefits, but did you know that it can also help improve concentration as well as other essential cognitive skills? Whether on the rink or in the playground, children who are more active tend to have better attention spans, do better in class, are more organized, and have an easier time managing their feelings.
For a healthy, happy child, it’s best to build the habit of getting regular physical activity early. By enrolling them in a child care centre, you are creating an opportunity for them to develop a lifelong passion for active play that will continue to benefit them for years to come.