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Play in the media


Here is a round-up of the latest play related articles to be published online.

Toy story: New study looks into how gender toy preferences have changed since the 80s
City University of London (George Wigmore)

A study by City, University of London, University College London and Glasgow Caledonian University found that children are more likely to play with toys that are aimed at their gender. The researchers looked at 16 studies between 1980 and 2016, analysing observations of children’s free selection of toys. Over time it was found that boys were more likely to play with ‘masculine typed’ toys while girls were more likely to play with ‘female typed’ toys.

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Young Journalism Prize
The Guardian 

The winner of the Guardian’s Young Journalism prize 2017, Caiden Clift, won the award with an article on the importance of playing out for children. The eleven-year-old wrote about the decrease in children’s independence over the last 40 years and how playing out has helped him develop many important life skills. He calls on parents to acknowledge that the fear of the possible risks of playing out may be a hindrance to the development of children. 

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Letting our kids run wild
NZ Herald (Simon Collins)

Looking at forest schools in New Zealand this article examines the benefits of outdoor schools compared to ‘mainstream’ schools. The article also looks at a study by AUT University and Otago University on 16 primary schools in which half relaxed their playground rules and the other half kept them the same. Teachers in the schools which had relaxed the rules found that children were fitter and better behaved. 

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Loose Parts: Who is doing the thinking... the children or the toy?
Fairydust Teaching (Sally)

Loose parts allow children to think more creatively claims this blogger. The author calls toys that have predetermined forms ‘fixed materials’ and says that these materials have already done the thinking for the child, whereas loose parts allow children to create their own function, purpose and role. This means that loose parts can help children develop their creativity, critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

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More articles:

  • A new beginning for playwork
    Child in the City (Adrian Voce)

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  • EU marks Children’s Day by including them in Parliamentary debate
    Child in the City (Adrian Voce)

    Read article
  • The risk-benefit equation of challenging playgrounds
    Child in the City (Jeanette Fich Jespersen)

    Read article
  • Ready for 30 hours of childcare? #TalkChildcare
    Mudiad Meithrin 

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  • Making cities playful spaces
    Afternoon (Laura Tchilinguirian)

    Read article
  • The Wind Is So Excited Today
    Today we will play

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