Are children delayed because of the pandemic?
By Kaysi J. Radek
The COVID-19 pandemic created a new blockade to communication and social skills because of the decrease in everyday human interaction. Studies have concluded that the most adversely affected group is children.
According to a study reported by Beth Daley, “Social cognitive development begins in the first year of life, when children begin to develop ‘theory of mind’ – understanding what others are thinking – which continues through age five. Play is an important part of this process, as it involves physical contact and development of friendships”. Social interaction between your child and others is pivotal in teaching communicative skills because it essentially builds their overall cognitive foundation.
The pandemic has significantly affected children’s social connection. In a study by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, in 2015, “Kindergarten students who are more inclined to exhibit ‘social competence’ traits—such sharing, cooperating, or helping other kids—may be more likely to attain higher education and well-paying jobs”. Parents need to find ways to get their children socializing again so they can build on the skills for peer interaction, negotiation, creativity and sharing.
One way to get kids engaged again is to encourage backyard play. Project Play books teach and encourage children to get out and play nostalgic games with their friends. The book series features “Kick the Can” and ”Treasure Hunt” as two favorite childhood games. The whimsical stories help children read about the Edgebrook kids and get inspired to play the games with their friends. It’s the perfect inspiration for a post pandemic playdate.
Project Play books are available on Amazon and the series includes rhyming books for younger readers including “Just a Baseball Game”, “Treasure Hunt”, and “Follow the Leader”. Chapter books are available for mid-level readers including “Kick the Can”, and “Ghost in the Graveyard”.