Though the summer is only beginning, many of us are already looking towards the fall. Both parents and educators are wondering how to support students returning to school full-time in person this fall. According to child psychologist Dr. Emily W. King and play therapist Sarah Harris, the answer is to spend this summer supporting children’s overall wellbeing. And the best way to do that is to encourage children to relax and play. Play can help children process emotions, expend energy, and develop creativity. This is what parents should be encouraging, instead of stressing over academic time lost to the pandemic. Dr. King writes, “Kids need play, movement and fun. The more laughter the better… Send them to school as emotionally well beings, and teachers will teach them.” Like many other experts, she recommends that parents make play their priority this summer.
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