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Kids play up, grow up

Friday, 25th March, 2011

MUSICAL: Isabelle Sabey, 9 months, enjoyed herself. MUSICAL: Isabelle Sabey, 9 months, enjoyed herself.

Children will always play, and it's just as well because it is an important part of growing up.

"The Big Playgroup" held yesterday in the town square as part of National Playgroup Week, aimed at highlighting how children learn and develop through play.

Mission Australia was there along with Good Beginnings, CentaCare, Outreach Toy Library, Child and Family Health Centre and Maari Ma Health Aboriginal Corporation, which coordinated the event.

Maari Ma's Early Years Project Leader, Narelle Pascoe, said the theme was "Learning Together Through Play".

"We want to promote not only the value of play as the foundation for learning in the early years but also highlight the role of a parent as the child's first educator," Ms Pascoe said.

"I think it was really successful."

Ms Pascoe said the day was pitched at children up to five years old and their were a lot of babies and toddlers.

"There was a good cross-section of children ... a picture is worth a thousands words and there were lots of children. Busy play was going on, there were no tears or tantrums," she said.

Ms Pascoe said resources from the Healthy Start Play group were available as well as books from the Child and Family Health Centre and the Outreach Toy Library bought its Toy Van and other resources. 

She said there was also information for parents on where and when play groups are held in the city.

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