Quoting from the Scientific American Mind article by Melinda Wenner on play – “Free, imaginative play is crucial for normal social, emotional and cognitive development. It makes us better adjusted, smarter and less stressed…”
The article goes on to say that some studies show that a play deprived childhood disrupts normal social, emotional and congitive development in humans and animals.

If you have a chance to read the article in Scientific AMerican Mind February/March 2009, I highly recommend it.

As we book playdates, afterschool acitivities, karate, gymnastics, little league, piano lessons, homework, ballet, yoga class etc. lets remember to make time for our kids to just play with pots and pans, play in the yard, play dress up, play make believe, use their imaginations and simply just play.

And if we are worried about them getting into a good college? Well according to Scientific American Mind – play may just be the thing to puts our kids in the forefront of the competition!