Sunday, January 4, 2015

Playful parenting: Sesame Street Family Play

In my search for resources that for support playful parenting, I came across the app, Sesame Street Family Play.  The app is $.99 with an additional in app purchase.  According to the description of the app, it is designed to encourage everyday playful moments and includes 150 game ideas. The $.99 version of the app provides game ideas for the home.  The in app purchase is $1.99 and provides additional activities for when away from home and traveling. 

The app prompts the user to choose the area of the house where the play will take place, then asks how many kids will be playing.  Choices for locations are Living Room, Kitchen, Bathroom and Bedroom.  Options for players are from 1-4+.  Different Sesame characters present games using readily available materials in the chosen area of the home. Sock Skee Ball is a game that was generated when the bedroom was chosen as the location.  The app asked if there were several belts and socks available.  To play the game, rolled up socks are thrown into looped belts that are placed on the floor.  Each loop is assigned a different point value.   At the end of the activity, the app describes what type of skills the activity is promoting.  In this case, the app explains that Sock Skee Ball promotes spatial relations, counting, and addition.  There were games for different routines such as clean up, bedtime, and bath time.  An example of a clean up game is, Cup Handed Robots.  The idea of the game is to see how fast you can pick up things with plastic cups on your hands.  A novel way to get reluctant cleaners engaged in the process. 

The home version of this app is a great tool for a parent or caregiver to turn to when a new play idea is needed.  The developers have designed many appropriate activities that promote imaginary and active play.  

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