Play In Hospital Week 2020
This week is Play in Hospital Week – a chance for therapeutic play teams across the country to promote the importance and vital role of play within their settings. The theme for this year is ‘Play well together’. Usually for the team this would mean extra activities and group sessions around the children’s hospital that highlight their role and the many benefits it brings. But this year, like everything else, things are a little different.
Play is both how children make sense of the world and how they express themselves. It’s something that’s intrinsic and is essential to a child’s holistic development. Believe it or not, play is even more important to children in crisis or in times of difficulty. In a hospital setting it supports, prepares and equips children with the skill of resilience.
Covid 19 has thrown in an extra challenge for the therapeutic play team to wave their magic wands at so this year they are using technology to bring Play in Hospital Week to children.
Play specialist Kelly says: “The team has recorded a play time tutorial video for each day of Play in Hospital Week with the hope that it brings you at home, and families in hospital some enjoyment, escape, ideas and light relief. Come and play well together!”
Thursday Messy play with Sioned
Sensory play is stimulating and fun. It is such a good way to give enjoyable and interesting learning experiences to children in hospital. Messy play or specialist food play can aid recovery, overcome aversions and help develop a wide range of skills. Yes we even get super messy at the hospital!
Wednesday Welsh and English rhyme time with Laura
The therapeutic play team use rhymes and songs all the time. It’s so much fun and they are familiar to the children and always lifts the mood. It’s also great to help children with speech and language skills and extra physical activity such as physiotherapy. The play team also use music and rhyme to distract from procedures that some children find distressing like blood tests.
Tuesday Baby massage with Clair
Before babies can understand verbal language, we use touch to communicate and comfort. Regularly massaging your baby is a way to give them, and you, bonding time and sensory stimulation for healthy development. Baby massage can help you soothe, relax and connect with your baby. One of the most important experiences for your baby’s happy development is your loving touch. Research reveals that routine touch and massage by a parent or loving caregiver are critical to a baby’s growth, communication and learning
Baby massage can help:
Soothe your baby
Aid digestion and help relieve colic, wind and constipation
Relieve nasal congestion and teething discomfort
Develop good muscle tone, co-ordination and suppleness
Enhance body awareness
Boost the immune system
Improve skin texture
Calm and relax both parent and baby
Boost parents’ confidence in handling their baby
Monday The Smartest Giant in Town with Kelly
Stories told or read to children offer a great escape from the day to day of hospital life. It wakes up their imagination and creative thinking. Stories told about characters in similar situation to a child in hospital, whatever that might be, help them make sense of what is happening, how they may cope and feel. By then writing their own stories, children can begin to express what they really feel. We can then help them even more by providing the right kind of support.
We as a charity are extremely proud to fund the therapeutic play team. You can make a donation towards their vital work by clicking the ‘Donate here’ button below.