10 Don't force it. If a parent's idea of playtime is quizzing their children on flashcards, their kids will grow to resent play. "You have to be careful that toys don't become a drill, like in school," says Stanek. All too often, parents forget the cardinal rule. "Play should be playful," says Stanek. "If play is stressful, something has gone wrong."
Teresa Dankowski is the intern coordinator at Chicago Parent and a senior at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.
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