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Children's Health Study Proves The True Value of Play

09-22-2011 08:52 AM CET | Associations & Organizations

Press release from: AblePlay

AblePlay - Play products for children with special needs

AblePlay - Play products for children with special needs

It may surprise parents to learn that the benefits of play could extend beyond fun and games. According to Pediatrics in Review, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, play “offers children important developmental benefits and parents the opportunity to fully engage with their children.”

Indeed, research continues to reveal that playtime helps build social and critical thinking skills in children, and that it may help with balance and dexterity. There’s even evidence that playing
can help bond parent and child.

Those benefits may be particularly important for youngsters who have special needs. An estimated 10 million families across the U.S. have a child with physical, developmental or emotional disabilities and chronic medical problems, according to Children’s Hospital Boston’s “Children’s News.”

Many of these families can tap into resources designed specifically to help their kids get more out of play. For instance, a newly revamped Web site called www.AblePlay.org reviews toys from the marketplace and evaluates them based on their relevance and benefits to children with special needs.

It features a rating system divided by disability category (physical, sensory, cognitive, etc.) and also lists toys by the possible benefits they may present. Additionally, parents can search toys by their manufacturer or their child’s age.

Also important, the site may help save parents money by allowing them to more thoroughly evaluate a toy—and its alternatives—before buying.

“Many parents purchase expensive adaptive toys without realizing that there are regular toys out there that work just as well or better for a fraction of the cost,” says Ellen Metrick, who evaluates
toys for the site.

Parents who visit the Web site can also help support the National Lekotek Center, a division of Anixter Center. The nonprofit group provides family-centered, playbased services for children with disabilities.

About the Company:
AblePlayTM is an initiative from the nonprofit National Lekotek Center, division of the nonprofit Anixter Center, and the leading authority on toys and play for children with disabilities. For further information, For more information, visit www.AblePlay.org, e-mail RMendoza@lekotek.org, or call (800) 366-PLAY, ext. 401.

National Lekotek Center
2001 N. Clybourn Ave
Chicago, IL 60614
Press Contact: Raiko Mendoza, Director of Business Development
Phone: 773.528.5766 x 401
Fax: 773.537.2992 |
Web: http://www.lekotek.org www.ableplay.org

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