June 23

What is Solitary Play?


As your child develops, they will experience different phases of play. Solitary play, or independent play, is often seen in infants beginning between 0-2 years of age. During solitary play, your child plays alone. They are exploring with toys and objects around the home. They may interact with you at times but primarily, your child plays alone.

Solitary play teaches a child to entertain themselves. This is important to achieve independence in the future. Solitary play is a wonderful form of play to observe as a parent. The infant is often in wonderment and excitement as they explore new objects. You may experience this period as when your infant reaches for every object, opens every cupboard, and touches every surface possible! After exploring the solitary play period, they start playing with other children.

Phases of Play

Unoccupied Play
Unoccupied play is seen in newborns. There is very little reaction with the world. The newborn is just observing.

Solitary Play
Solitary play is when a child starts to explore objects and the world around them. However, the play is by themselves.

Onlooker Play
A child observes before they advance into playing with others.

Parallel Play
Parallel play is when children play in the same room as each other but do not interact.

Associative Play
During associative play children play next to each other. They may even talk. However, they do not play together.

Cooperative Play
Cooperative play is when children can interact with others to engage cooperatively.

Examples of Solitary Play

• Looking at colorful pictures in books
• Stacking blocks
• Playing with a wooden train
• Playing in play kitchen

Each stage of play is fundamental to a child’s development. Toys N More has toys when your infant experiences solitary play. Visit our toy store today in Reno, Nevada.


childhood development, phases of play, solitary play

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