The Power of Messy Play in Early Childcare Development

If you are a parent who is put off by messy play because of the messiness and the inevitable clean-up operation, this article is for you. Studies have shown that messy play is one of the best ways for children to explore, grow and flourish. What better and more fun could there be to educate our children than through this play? We all know how much they love getting messy, and there is a way you can help your child develop crucial life skills while channelling this natural desire. It all starts with early childcare in Kingscliff and Chindarah.

Messy Play And Its Importance

‘Messy play’ is the style of play in which children take the lead, explore and learn with their hands and experience a wide variety of textures while finger painting, helping bake, or playing in the sandpit. In a fun way, it teaches many necessary life skills to children that they will never forget.

It’s All About The Senses

While engaging their senses and playing  in their own pace, children interact with their environment and with each other. The importance of touch and sight can never be underestimated as it assists  them to grasp concepts that the world offers them in a concrete manner they understand best. Under the guidance of skilled early childhood educators/teachers , sensory play becomes the fundamental cornerstone of your child’s development from a very young age.

What About Toys?

Unlike traditional toys, which are designed for specific activities and play, messy play harnesses objects and materials such as food ingredients, play dough, mud, water tanks, objects from nature, etc. These organic materials make your child more engaged in learning through play and their mind will process problem-solving, apply motor skills, and learn a new activity each time they engage in a messy play session. It introduces the element of unexpected and immense exploration. No two sessions are ever the same!

The Educational Benefits Of Messy Play

Essential Early Childhood Development

  • Cognitive development is supported via problem-solving. Messy play allows children to explore, learn by observation and figure things out for themselves. This builds self-confidence and also spatial awareness.
  • Physical development is heightened through scooping, digging, squeezing bottles, moulding clay, etc. The five senses are also stimulated.
  • Children’s social development is supported when they work together for the common goal of their messy play game by assisting, taking turns and solving problems together.

Crucial Life Skills

  • When children share resources, go through their tasks and make mistakes while they learn in a safe environment and clean up after their messy game, they learn important life skills, including sharing, patience, perseverance, independence and a sense of accomplishment and responsibility.
  • Communication and language skills are enhanced when children ask questions while watching a demonstration and then talk through what they are doing when it’s their turn to perform.
  • It’s also a wonderful foundation for maths and science skills through the actions of counting, identifying shapes, pairing items together, and combining different shades to achieve a new colour. Through play, they get to experiment, make observations and even make predictions of an outcome.

Creativity & Engagement

  • Messy play develops and nurtures curiosity and exploration because of its explorative and spontaneous nature.
  • It’s fun and engaging; children cannot help but dig in, giggle, laugh, chat and learn. All through play!

Beach Kids Early Learning & Preschool centres our early childhood development in Kingscliff and Chindarah around the Early Years Learning Framework. Our individual attention to each of our student learners produces confident and independent leaders as the years progress from birth to the transition to formal schooling. Give your child the same opportunity and contact us to learn more about our services and philosophy.