What are the learning goals during play? You read them here!

Recently I told you about the importance of good toys. Today I want to go deeper into the learning objectives during play. Each age phase entails its own 'learning objectives' and the associated game activities:

Babies and toddlers

In babies and toddlers, playing contributes greatly to the development of perception through the senses, especially vision, hearing and touch, to information processing by the brain and to the development of the control and coordination of the muscles. Toys that stimulate the senses and challenge them to motor activity fits well with these ages.


Toddlers are increasingly learning how the world works, gaining better insight into cause and effect and learning to play all kinds of skills. The talking comes in an acceleration. The game becomes more functional (replaying reality). Toys may be more complex, more appealing to fine and gross motor skills and more demands on the information processing by the child. Toddlers show more and more fantasy play. Playing with hugs, dolls, cars and blocks is popular. From the age of three, children can already participate in simple games and learn to deal with game rules.


Preschoolers are often already working on their own school with knowledge and skills. Some preschoolers are busy writing letters and numbers and words and all kinds of concepts. If a child likes it, it can be stimulated with educational toys. Preschoolers can play with more complex building material and like to play fantasy games with dolls and dolls. They can also argue better. They can participate in games with more rules. This allows them to learn to deal with rules in other situations as well. Games can contribute to the development of the language and the number concept. By playing together children can learn to share and take into account others, but also to stand up for their own interests.

From six years

From the age of six, children can participate more and more in games. Rules are better understood and more is played strategically. Playing with cars, dolls and dolls remains popular. Children - especially the boys - become more competitive. Boys are increasingly building with more complex construction material. Dress up games and other fantasy games are fun. For girls it is fun to be busy with fashion and looks. Children of this age also want to be able to do the things that older brothers or sisters do.

From eight years

Children can play more and more complex games from the age of eight. The problem solving capacity and strategic insight is increasing. Language, math and knowledge games become more interesting. Construction toys and technical toys are popular with boys. Children are also regularly engaged in creative activities.

From 12 years

From the age of 12, children are often able to play adults' games, but they need to be helped by a parent, for example. The abstract thinking strongly increases in this age phase. Virtually all aspects of intellectual development can be stimulated with games.

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