It is interesting to think that play is considered an action exclusively for children when at the end of the day we are all playing all the time. We play with ideas, objects, money, words, our bodies, our minds, and everyone around us. The world is a playground. It doesn't matter how old you are or what game are you playing. We all play the game; consciously or not.
Through words we differentiate games: work, love, friendship, marriage, family, sex, politics, etc. The rules of the games are different in every culture. Culture affects how we approach this games, our attitudes towards the games and the strategies we have to be a player in the game of life. The games are real and they absorb us fully. We play a role in every game. We play our role based on a script, learned from experience or a formal course, or based on creativity making it look more like an improv act. The more we play the more we learn. At the end, our attitude towards these games makes all the difference. Is your life a boring game or a fun one? Is it full of creativity and spontaneity, or does it have the same storyline all the time?
When children play they are living, just as we adults. They are learning strategies that will be later on used in other "games" during their in life. Play is as valuable as reading, writing, math or science. Think about your life, isn't that true? Aren't the skills learned in the social exercise of play as valuable or even more so than knowing all the facts to live a full happy life?