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What is the Connection Between Dreaming and Play?

July 25, 2012 on 11:54 am | In Health and Dreams | No Comments

For small children the difference between dreams and real life is often unclear. They wake up from a dream of a favorite dessert and wonder where it is. Sometimes, if a dream was fun for them, they want to act it out. Experiencing the difference between dreams and reality is part of the vital importance of play in child development.

Children need free playtime to develop properly. Over-supervision, too much supervised “play” imposed by adults, inhibits their imagination and keeps them from acting out their dreams in the natural way that children do without adult interference.

Children need good playgrounds, places to run and scream and grow and act out fantasies from their dreams. Safe playgrounds provide a place to fall safely as well as to run freely. And safe playgrounds reassure adults enough for them to allow children to play freely.

Playground structures are important, too. They become the supports for acting out dreams. The top of a slide becomes a mountain top. A jungle gym becomes a castle, or a rainforest, or whatever a child makes of it.

Today playgrounds are safer than they were a couple of generations ago. The structures are safer. But are they more fun? That depends a lot on the freedom allowed to children for play.

One thing that helps reassure parents of playground safety is resilient playground surfaces to fall on, surfaces that repel water and keep the ground below swings, slides, and other structures from turning into slippery, dirty mud holes.

‘Rubber mulch’ such as that offered by RubberRecycle can be used to create a dryer playground surfacing and a safer place to fall. It is being used more and more on school and commercial playgrounds. So children can run and jump and build their imaginary worlds without interference from overprotective adults.

So parents can relax and simply let children be children. And children are once more free to run and play and climb and act out their dreams.

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