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Play in the media


Here is a summary of the latest play related articles and blogs to be published online.

Children's mental health: it’s time to put wellbeing on the curriculum - The Guardian (Andy Cope)

With mental health problems rising amongst children in the UK, schools must find ways of teaching children to be responsible for their own wellbeing. According to this article, wellbeing needs to be put on the national curriculum. This would include a GCSE and a ‘happiness inspector’ to check on the children’s progress.

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How residents are opening up the city for children to play - Child in the City (Alice Ferguson)

Playing Out started in Bristol as a low-cost, grassroots street play model. It has since been recognised as a solution for children’s wellbeing on an international level. Playing Out’s director and co-founder, Alice Ferguson tells the story of the project and what it still aims to achieve.

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‘Too many schools have forgotten that fun is crucially important’ - tes (Colin Harris)

A head teacher revisits his old primary school to uncover a time capsule from 35 years ago. The capsule contains timetables and records of what the pupils thought of school life. In this article, he notes that in the past school was considered fun while today schools concentrate on results rather than play and creativity. He notes that schools need to offer more fun and risk for children and a chance to play to improve their communication and concentration skills.

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Laughter Heals! 7 Ways That Play Builds Emotional Health - AAA State of Play blog (Kim Hart)

Listed are seven reasons why play is healthy for the developing child’s wellbeing. While maturing, children experience a range of emotions and the author states that play and laughter help her children to learn how to communicate well and to healthily deal with their emotions.

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Risk in Play and Learning: Ubud-Höör Declaration

The ‘Ubud-Höör declaration’ for September 2017 from the International School Grounds Alliance calls on those who plan and develop school environments to consider the benefits of risk for children.

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'Children under 10 too young to take bus to school alone' - BBC news

Child safety officials in Canada have reprimanded a man for allowing his children, aged seven to eleven to take a bus alone to school. Adrian Cook writes about parenting and urban living in his blog, ‘5 kids 1 condo’, and said that he wants to ‘raise capable and independent humans’.

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Look back in play - part one and two - Child in the City blog (Maisie Rowe)

After uncovering 800 photographs from her childhood play centre in the seventies, landscape architect Maisie Rowe tells the story of her ‘play in space’ and how it has affected her practice. Here we have part one and two of a four-part series.

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Read article part two

Being active after school better than homework for academic performance, research suggests - Active for Life (Blaine Kyllo)

According to columnist André Picard, homework is counterproductive. Children gain more academically and physically if they can play after school rather than doing extracurricular work. This blog post is based on research gathered for his collection of articles in ‘Matters of Life and Death: Public Health Issues in Canada’.

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We must act now to protect our children’s right to play - The Sunday Morning Herald (Dr Sandra Hesterman)

Early Childhood Australia WA is campaigning for the development of a play strategy in their region, to ensure children have the right to play and that their voice is heard, in accordance with article 31 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

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Are Kids Losing Out? We Oldies Learned to Use Our Instincts! - Grandma Williams blog 

During Grandma Williams’ childhood, children were often left by themselves without supervision. This post reflects on the difference between modern and past childhoods and the notion that children develop better instincts if left to play alone. She asks if it’s the responsibility of the older generation to remind people that children need freedom to play unsupervised.

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