It is important for children to socialize and learn to interact with peers from a young age. Children who play well with others are often more successful when they start school because they are confident in their social skills and they are used to sharing.  Studies show children who get out of the house and run around and play creative games with other children at the same developmental level are happier than children without that opportunity. The playgroups organized through the JCC offer all sorts of imaginative play, games and singing.

But playgroups are not just an outlet for children, they are a great place for adults to connect with other parents going through the same stage in life. Maybe your friends are working mothers with increasingly demanding jobs or they are single women who are still searching for Mr. Right. They are great friends, but sometimes you need to talk to someone who knows exactly what you are going through. Playgroups double as support groups to face parenting challenges. Especially for stay-at-home parents, playgroups break up the day and give you a reason to get out and about. They are a great chance to take a breather from bottles and baby talk for stimulating adult conversation. Many parents report feelings of depression and apathy when they change their lifestyles in order to stay home with their children. In some cases, these feelings are even followed by feelings of guilt. Taking the time to express these emotions and to compare parenting notes with others is very important, and sadly, often overlooked. Children sense when adults are out of sorts and your happiness or lack thereof, can impact his or her happiness and overall well-being as well.

To find an age-appropriate playgroup for your child in your area contact Marci Diamond at 314-442-3454. For members of the St. Louis Jewish Community Center placement is free and for nonmembers it is a one-time $18 fee.

Let’s take on the terrible twos together!