The evidence of the benefits of play is overwhelming. The latest World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines prescribe active play for kids under five to increase their mental and physical wellbeing as they get older. The United Nations High Commission for Human Rights recognises play as an essential right of every child. The Flux Trends’ 2019 Report describes how doctors are prescribing playtime for stressed, depressed children and their equally anxious, always-connected parents. Engaging in shared playtime plays a significant role in parent-child bonding and provides invaluable opportunities for parents to role model positive values and behaviour to their children.
#SAVETIMEFORPLAYTIME campaign asks parents to pledge more time to play
Hasbro’s #SaveTimeforPlaytime video showcases several South African youngsters discussing what they’ll do to convince their parents to spend more time playing with them.
“The video highlights how important it is to make the moments you spend together count. By actively engaging in playtime with our kids, we are also encouraging them to spend more time at play. The video shows us it’s not necessarily the grand gestures that make the difference, but rather the small, uninterrupted everyday moments that make memories,” says marketing manager for Hasbro South Africa and working mom, Cara Birkett.
Watch the video below:
Parents decided to make more time for their kids
The parents featured in the video all agreed that while they consciously know they are not always available, or actively participating even when they are in the same room, what they hadn’t realised is the impact this was having on their kids. After being part of this social experiment, they offered up a few suggestions to try and create more time during the day.
- Not taking work home with them
- Spending less time on their cell phone, and
- Actively prioritising playtime – even just 30 minutes a day, can make all the difference.
This idea resonated so deeply with the local audience, Hasbro decided to take the campaign one step further. They want to encourage South Africans to make more time to play. To do this, they introduced the #SaveTimeforPlaytime pledge, complete with a pinky promise, which asks kids and parents to suggest ways to make playtime a priority – and then commit to making this happen.
To make your pledge and share your ideas on how you can #SaveTimeForPlaytime or get some tips from other time-starved parents, visit Monopoly South Africa on Facebook and click on the Save Time for Playtime Pledge Page.
Incorporate more play time in your day with these tips:
Make the morning rush fun
The usual chaotic panic of getting ready for school can put everyone in a spin. Make the morning rush fun by turning it into a game. Give points for getting ready for school, helping with breakfast, getting dressed the fastest, etc. The kids can redeem the points for playtime later in the day once their homework is done.
Ditch the extra episode
Watching one less episode of your favourite series means an extra 30 to 60 minutes to play! Schedule a family board games night, competing over the classics, like Monopoly or Jenga, or get extra active with Twister.
Cook up a storm
Turn Sunday nights into family meal prep time. Encourage everyone to lend a hand to prep meals and lunchboxes for the week ahead. A big pot of stew or soup can be stretched across several meals. Make two lasagnes at the same time and freeze one. This will go a long way in saving you time during the week.
Turn one meal a week into a picnic night
Set out a picnic blanket in the living room and serve dinner picnic-style. It’s a great opportunity to break the monotony and combine mealtime and playtime.
This is another potentially tricky time for the family! Encourage older kids, especially, to stop arguing over bath time by striking a bath-bargain. If the child gets squeaky-clean super-quick, there’s more time for a game of their choice!
“Parents work extremely hard and it’s completely understandable that sometimes the energy and time just isn’t there to make playtime possible. However, we’re hoping that the #SaveTimeforPlaytime pledge will help bring to the fore how big a difference just a little bit more play each day can make. Hopefully starting this conversation will encourage people to share their ideas on how they can save on time during the day,” concludes Cara.
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