Remember when you were a kid and you played outside for hours everyday? Likely the only reason you went inside was because it was getting dark out and your parents made you. Children these days just don’t play the same way.
There are a few reasons why children don’t play like we used to; the world is considered a more dangerous place and there are safety concerns, Parents and children are busier with work, school work, and scheduled activities, Canadian weather can keep children indoors, and the never ending supply of technology has children spending more time in front of screens.
Did you know now that technology is so readily available, the average Canadian child spends 8 hours a day in front of a screen? Are your children getting more screen time than playtime?
Here is how being active can affect your brain health positively:
- It can help us concentrate.
- It can improve our mental focus.
- It can help us to communicate.
- It makes us more creative
- It helps us switch from task to task more easily.
- It also increases all the “feel-good” hormones in your body, which can lead to improvements in mood. This is true for everyone but especially true for learning disabilities, young children, and older adults.
Some exercise is better than none. It doesn’t have to be a lot of activity to be beneficial. Even a short walk can boost your mood and get the creative juices flowing!
Here is a great info graphic that shows the benefits of children being active.
The Participaction website has some great resources that help families “Unplug & Play” and have fun doing it; a “7 Days of Play” calendar, a screen time log, customizable certificate of play and tips to help balance screen time and play time.
Go ahead and take the “Unplug & Play” challenge!