- Encourages independence in children. They are able to decide how they want
to play and can use the materials in the way that they choose, which puts the child in control.
- Develops movement, co-ordination and control. Messy play gives children the opportunity to explore materials using their hands and arms (sometimes their legs and feet too).
- Offers opportunities to develop language and communication. Children will learn new words that describe the things they see, feel, hear, smell and taste.
- Supports children in being creative
and using their imaginations. Regular opportunities for free play, allow children to create their own activities in their own way.
- Extends children’s knowledge and understanding of the world as they can investigate objects, textures and a range of materials.
- Provides an opportunity for children to use their senses. Children experience different sensations and have the opportunity to respond in a variety of ways to the things they see, hear, smell, taste and touch.
- Allows for social play. Children join in activities with other children and learn social skills as they play. They learn to take turns, share and interact with each other.
- Gives children the opportunity to express themselves and their emotions. Various materials can encourage different feelings – for example, corn flour and foams can feel soothing
- Helps children develop concentration and problem- solving skills.. Messy play gives children the opportunity to work things out themselves and experiment safely. Young children learn best through practical experiences.
Some children even practised their letter and number formation after Nora made the discovery that she could write! What letters and numbers can you see?