Discover the Importance of Play in Early Childhood Education

Mar 27, 2024 | Blog

Play reinforces the core principles of early years education, highlighting the importance of play in early childhood development. Well-planned activities nurture children’s thinking, understanding, and learning.

The Emirates British Nursery curriculum covers all aspects of the above areas of play and learning to support child development. Our large and varied outdoor playgrounds, purpose-built classrooms, and activity rooms all support developmental play for children from birth (45 days)  to Foundation stage 2 (4-5 years).  

We cannot differentiate between play and learning, because children learn through play. Play is a valuable way of supporting children’s development.  Physical, Cognitive, Language, Emotional, and Social development are all supported through play.

In this blog, we discover the different types of play and their benefits to support your child’s development, health, and well-being. Join us to see how we can help your child reach their full potential.

The Power of Playful Learning

Meaningful, stimulating play activities inspire creativity, develop problem-solving skills, and foster a love of learning. 

Types of play

Child-led/Free Play:

Unstructured, child-led play allows children to pick activities based on their interests. This promotes creativity, decision-making, and independence. Emirates British Nursery understands the importance of free play, which is incorporated into our daily schedules. 

Adult led/structured play:

This teaches children organization, collaboration, problem-solving skills, and the ability to follow directions.  Staff will provide resources that reflect children’s ages, interests, knowledge, strengths, and abilities to stimulate and support play.  

Sensory play:

Sensory play supports using the senses (touch, sight, sound, smell, and taste).  It also encourages curiosity, creativity, and problem-solving skills as children experiment with various materials. Sensory play also encourages the development of fine motor skills, concentration, and creativity. Activities such as sand, dough, clay, and water play are all provided at Emirates British Nurseries. 

Role play/pretend play

Role play allows children the opportunity to express themselves and recreate scenes from the world around them. It allows children to explore their feelings and find out about themselves and others through acting out scenarios. Role play encourages children to connect, share, and collaborate. Children learn the foundations of communication, cooperation, and empathy through acting out real-world situations. 

Construction play

Constructive play develops a vast range of skills and behaviors, including; Physical skills (both fine and gross motor) necessary to manipulate and control the chosen toy or material, problem-solving skills, and flexible thinking skills. Children can test their construction skills and develop perseverance in the face of construction challenges.  When working with others, teamwork behaviors are necessary to successfully and collaboratively complete a task together.

Where play and learning meet

At Emirates British Nursery, we realise the importance of play in early childhood. A well-balanced approach to play-based learning promotes intellectual, physical, social, and emotional development from an early age.  Emirates British Nurseries’ specialised play spaces and activities unlock important developmental stages for all children giving them a unique, world-class, and premier early years play-based curriculum to explore.  

Children can now continue their fascinating journey through play with us even longer into Foundation Stage 2, which aligns with the UK’s Early Years Foundation framework.  Experience our one-of-a-kind FS2 program, which provides the finest possible start for young children. Discover how EBN lays the stage for your child’s success. As a KHDA-accredited Early Childhood Centre with premium standards, our British framework produces great results, preparing children for future academic success

If you’re looking for a preschool in Dubai look no further. Our nursery provides a happy environment and incorporates exciting and engaging activities, establishing the basis for a lifetime of learning and wellness.


Explore our nurseries

Dubai Silicon Oasis Nursery


Mirdif Emirates British Nursery


Dubai Motor City Emirates British Nursery


The Villa Nursery in Dubai