Dear Delaware Child Development Families,
In our program, children get to fully experience adventure! Adventurous play could be the answer to a child’s craving and developmental need for physical activity. Therefore, we offer opportunities throughout the entire day for children to test their bodies' abilities and strength. Children in our program participate in appropriate physical risk-taking. Physical risk-taking is an important learning opportunity. When children take risks, teachers stay close by to support them in thinking through their choices and accomplishing their goals in a way that keeps others safe. An important part of supporting adventurous play is trusting that the child can make appropriate decisions and is strong enough to recover if something doesn’t go as planned. Adventurous play also strengthens fine motor skills. With each experience, the brain is better able to coordinate the messages and to respond appropriately.
Rough and tumble play is not associated with increased aggression in children. Adults fear accidents and want to minimize risk, yet play spaces that offer risk tend to have fewer accidents than traditional playgrounds. Skills that young children use while climbing trees help them develop important skills that they will use in future years to safely drive a car. Toddlers’ kinesthetic awareness rarely keeps pace with their actual physical development, so they take lots of tumbles and misjudge distances, weight, or strength. They often retest and relearn to keep up with the changes happening in their bodies. By kindergarten, the much more developed and coordinated child is consumed with figuring out how high she can climb, how far he can jump, how fast she can run, or how hard he can pedal.