Monthly Article Archives: November 2006

To Appreciate the Influence of PlayRobert Brooks, Ph.D.

As the grandfather of three preschool children I am reminded on a regular basis of the joy of play and imagination. I remember when my wife and I babysat for our oldest grandchild Maya last year when she was about 3 1/2 years old. We put her in for her afternoon nap. I could hear her gleefully talking to herself and it was obvious that falling sleep was the last item on her personal agenda. After a while I knocked on her door and asked, “Is it hard to fall asleep?” Maya smiled and answered, “Yes.” I noticed many of her stuffed animals around her bed and simply said, “It looks like you’re having fun with all of your animals.” She said “yes” again and invited me to watch her as she told a story, sometimes including me in her play. It was a joy to observe the enthusiasm with which she engaged in her fantasy play, weaving a story that involved different characters. Later that day she played a game with my wife that she has played on numerous occasions (basically just with my wife), involving a baby shark. Although we as adults might tire after repeating the seemingly

Article Archive