A June 2020 review study in the Journal Developmental Review included 78 research articles on father-child play.
This study found that fathers tend to engage in more physical and rough and tumble play with their children. The authors also found that father-child play tends to increase from infancy until preschool and then declines around early to middle childhood. Most importantly, the authors found that children with fathers who played with them more often in their first three years of life showed a greater ability to regulate their own behavior and emotions later in childhood.
This study emphasizes the importance of engaged fathers in the lives of young children and suggests that the type of play fathers tend to engage in (usually more physical play) is very important for child development.
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