The benefits of play in child development

To read on Mencap website:

Note: In the UK, the term of ‘Learning disability’ is used instead of ‘Intellectual disability’.



The early years of a child’s life can be an important time for developing new skills and having fun. Many parents have told Mencap about the benefits of play and education during the early years of their child’s development.

There are a number of companies that produce accessible toys and play equipment designed specifically for children with a learning disability. These include:

  • Bag Books
    Bag books create multi-sensory stories for children, teenagers and adults with severe to profound learning disabilities.
  • The Happy Puzzle Company Ltd
    Produces fun and educational puzzles to help with dyspraxia, dyslexia, living and learning difficulties.
  • National Association of Toy and Leisure Libraries
    Offers services to local families and a regular toy loan facility for a small fee.

Our son has a development delay of around 18 months and communication difficulties, but we’ve been really pleased with the progress he’s made.

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