Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Vintage Thoughts On Child's Play, Toys & Friends

Inside Variety Fair: A Household Digest (copyright 1948, Community Services, Inc.; my copy book published by and presumed to be a fund-raiser for the American Legion Auxiliary, Benjamin A. Remmele Unit No. 7, Sleepy Eye, Minnesota), a section on children:

Choice Of Companions

A child needs freedom in choosing his companions. Adults dictating to the child as to whom he can play with, results in his being especially desirous of playing with those his parents consider unfit. The parents should try to get associated with his playmate, perhaps they misjudged the child. It may take seeing the playmate in his own home to bring the fact to his attention that he isn't a suitable playmate.

Play is the young child's means of learning, for through it he develops physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially. He needs the kinds of play experiences that will contribute to his best growth.

Much of the child's play is patterned after the activities of the adults around him. He likes to pretend that he is a father, a doctor, a train conductor, a garbage man, or any one of hundreds of other characters. The toys he needs for such play consists of housekeeping materials, dress-up clothes, empty cartons and cans that he can use in a "grocery store," dolls, and any other materials that can help him to carry out his interests. Ingenious adults can be helpful in furnishing just the right material at just the right time if they are alert to the child's imaginings.

There should be a place to put the child's toys. Shelves are much more satisfactory than boxes for storage because they allow the child to see all his toys and to get the one he wants without having to more others. If his toys are in a box he may have to take everything on top out to reach the toy which is at the bottom. This is a discouraging process and is not conducive to his learning to put away his playthings.

Later in childhood a child likes to have a place to call his own, where he can go for recreation when he wants to be alone; he needs a place in which he can be solitary at times.

Families who play together are likely to live together successfully. The older child can do much toward planning family good times. Given the responsibility for such planning, he may discover that his family members are much more interesting people than he has realized.

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