What comes to mind when you think of "play"? How do your children feel when you mention "playtime"? Why do you think your child gets so excited about a new toy? Let's hear from the perspective of Child Development Theorists about how important play is and what it signifies to our children.Play is a universal phenomenon, and wherever there is a child, there is play. While the form of play and materials used may vary across cultures, play has always been present (Koçyiğit, 2007). Play is defined as the most effective educational channel during the preschool period. According to a study conducted by Akandere in 2003, play is the most natural way for a child to express themselves and explore communication with the outside world. While playing, children practice a range of emotions such as joy, happiness, anger, anxiety, attachment, and independence, as well as learn to recognize themselves and control their reactions (Koçyiğit, 2007).Plato (427-347 BC) emphasizes the importance of a child growing up in an environment where play is not restricted by adults and highlights the significant role of play in discovering their abilities (Koçyiğit, 2007).Ghazali (1058-1111) believes that play is essential for a child's rest, refreshing their memory, and enhancing their capacity to learn (Koçyiğit, 2007). Through play, children encounter new emotions and transfer these emotions to new experiences they learn.Comenius (1592-1671) argues that play has a significant place in child development and education. Additionally, play is associated with a person's passion for freedom, being active, making friends, competing, and desiring change. It plays a crucial role in a child's ability to establish discipline and order. When conducted in a unique environment, play becomes a pathway for a child's personality development, formation of moral values, and fostering creativity (Koçyiğit, 2007).Froebel (1782-1852) believes that play is the environment where a child can express themselves and their emotions in the purest form. He suggests that play nourishes all areas of a child's development and serves as a mirror reflecting their inner world, as well as a means of communication with adults (Koçyiğit, 2007).Montessori believes that play should have a purpose and that children should have the freedom to choose their playmates (Koçyiğit, 2007). The need for play and its phases change parallel to the child's age. The child's transition from a selfish attitude to collaboration, from tangible concepts to abstract ones, and from simple to complex structures is reflected in the phenomenon of play. Piaget suggests a relationship between mental development and play, Freud examines play in relation to a child's personality and psychological development stages, and Miltred Parten focuses on the social aspect of play in child development (Baykoç Dönmez, 2000).With the hope of creating play spaces where our children can practice life skills, express their emotions, and support their development, let's share meaningful and joyful playtime moments every new day, just as we do with love, sleep, nutrition, and care. Because happy and healthy societies start with happy and healthy childhoods.