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The Importance of Playdates


Source: Google Images

Source: Google Images

When a fellow blogger and a good friend mentioned on her FB timeline about arranging a playdate for her son with one of his schoolmateS, I thought about the word, googled it and realised that THE playdate is an interesting concept for parents of Contemporary India.

Playdate – the word was a stranger to Indian parents till A few years back. however, with a paradigm shift in our society – emergence of nuclear families, both parents working – this US concept of playdating has found its way inTO Indians homes as well. Before I go any further let’s understand, what is playdate? I am sure most parents know about this concept and for those who don’t here is a little definition. Wikipedia defines playdate as “an arranged appointment for children of same age-group to get together in a structured environment to play for few hours.”

The playdate has become common in India because of the busy work schedules of parents, nuclear families and the hazards of leaving one’s kids unattended for a long period of time. Hence our kids need to have playdates wherein one of the kids’ parents is the host for the evening. Playdates in today’s times are really important, as most of families are nuclear and have only one kid – so the child is a stranger to the concept of sharing and adjusting with others. Playdates come in handy in teaching your child to share, and adjust with his peers and also take responsibility for his or her actions.

 

Social and Emotional Development

Playdates help in the social and emotional development of a child. They teach kids about sharing and caring for each other. They teach kids the give and take aspect of relationships. Children learn to consider the wants and needs of their friends first, which in turns helps them to learn about empathy. Empathy or compassion is the basis of tolerance and is the antidote for bullying. They learn to wait their turn and to be polite and respectful – both as hosts and as guests. They learn to cooperate and to collaborate – to plan together, to agree on things, and what to do when they disagree. And they learn how to stick up for themselves, and that relationships involve give and take. Most of all, they learn how to share.

 

Making playdates successful

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Swati Nitin Gupta is a journalist with extensive experience in writing for newspapers, tabloids, magazines and online media in India as well as Middle East. She has written on a range of topics, from human interest stories to event coverage to features on topics like fashion, beauty, women, children, travel and general health issues. As an Indian Army officer's daughter, Swati has been been exposed to the various cultures and lifestyles of different states of the country – knowledge of which she tries to incorporate in her writing. Swati also maintains her personal blogs at swatisays.wordpress.com and swati1012.wordpress.com.


2 thoughts on “The Importance of Playdates

  1. Kritika Srinivasan

    Thanks for this useful post Swati. Just wanted to add that attention to safety is a very important aspect of organising playdates. Firstly, no matter what the age of the children is, it is essential to have adult supervision in the vicinity. This is not just to mediate between children in the event of disputes, but more importantly to ensure the safety of children. You can also set rules upfront for the session that all children need to follow – clearing up after each game and before beginning the next activity, no rough games inside the house, no shoes inside the house, no jumping on the furniture, no playing with scissors, etc. Children should be made to understand that these rules are for their own safety and any child not following these rules will not be allowed to continue playing with the others. Do ensure that you have the contact numbers of all the parents in case of an emergency.

    Reply
    1. Swati

      These are good points Kritika. Request you to please add them in the blog if that’s okay with you.

      Reply

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