Cold weather and cabin fever got you down? Check out Bryn Mawr's newest learning adventure - The Play Café where you can enjoy a cup a coffee, mingle with other caregivers and their young children, and most importantly - PLAY.
We had the pleasure of checking out The Play Café recently, and my 3 year old and infant had a blast. From a really cool Lego loft, to dress up clothes of every kind, to blocks, cars, and small manipulatives for learning, to books, a dollhouse, and an infant climbing area to boot - this place has it all to keep your little ones entertained for hours.
We will definitely be headed back to The Play Café all winter long. Not because the coffee was good (which it was), or because we met some fun playmates (which we did), or because the kids played for hours and didn't want to leave (which was true). No, we'll be back because it's SO important for children to engaged in ACTIVE learning, which The Play Café has plenty of.
Did you know that physical activity activates the brain in ways that promote cognitive development? Children should be encouraged to explore the world with their senses - making learning not only "come alive" but more meaningful, and of course, fun and long lasting! To learn more about the benefits of active learning and play check out these articles: In Defense of Active Learning and Flash Cards or Finger Paints: Should Academics or Play be the Goal of Preschool?
Here are some of the ways we learned through play on our visit:
If you are interested in joining in the fun and learning, check out their website www.theplaycafe.com! In addition to their play space and cafe, you can register for classes in a bunch of learning areas. If you are around this weekend, visit them for their Grand Opening on January 4th from 9 - 12 - enjoy free admission as well as games, music, and other treats and surprises!
Need a book to go along with your trip to The Play Café? We loved reading HAVE FUN MOLLY LOU MELON by Patty Lovell. It's the perfect reminder that play and imagination are the best way to learn and have fun!