As part of the Make Time 2 Play campaign we commission play research, expert discussion and specialist advice on play. We also refer to leaflets undertaken on play as the British Toy and Hobby Association. If you want to read some of the more indepth research you can find it here:
Play is essential for a healthy child development and is the first form of education that children receive. They learn lots of different skills and behaviours from various types of play as they develop the skills they need for life.
A report commissioned by MT2P and written by child health education specialist, Dr Aric Sigman. This report highlights the vital importance of real world play for the development of children and calls for play to be recognised as more than just fun entertainment.
This paper focuses on and draws together existing research on the benefits of taking part in sport, play and physical activity from a young age and explores the reasons why some children might be put off the prospect of physical activity due to concerns about their body image and the associated effects on confidence. Dr Linda Papadopoulos, Ambassador for the Make Time 2 Play campaign, offers her expert advice on how parents can help children who might not be naturally inclined to take part in physical activities to overcome their fears and benefit from the many advantages that regular exercise and active play has to offer.
This exploratory study, produced by Loughborough University looks into the impact that different types of toys and play can have on children’s physical activity. The study has been built on research findings that indicated that children were more active when given a choice of toys to play with. A mixed-methods design was utilised to compare physical activity levels and the type of activities during play with toys and a toy substitute (cardboard boxes) and during the school break, school lunchtime and PE sessions of primary aged children from Year 3 (ages 7-8).
This review is part of a wider enquiry conducted on behalf of Play England and the British Toy & Hobby Association (BTHA) for the 2011 Make Time to Play Campaign. The review gives an overview of the importance of play for children’s health, well-being and development, as well as discussing the benefits of play provision to local communities. It illustrates how lack of time and spaces for play, and hostile attitudes towards children playing outdoors can have damaging implications for children’s health and happiness. Drawing on a wide range of evidence, the review indicates the potential consequences of ‘a world without play’; that is, a world where play is placed at the bottom of adult agendas and the value of play in children’s lives is not fully acknowledged. Children will always play, but adults must provide children with opportunities, time to themselves and spaces for play if they are to get the full benefits.
This report is part of a wider enquiry conducted by Play England and the British Toy & Hobby Association (BTHA) on the impact of play deprivation on children, families and communities. In the context of a study on a world without play, the panel was keen to emphasise that whilst there are serious detrimental effects on children when they are unable to play, play in itself should not be seen as a means to another end. Play, for children, is as natural as eating or sleeping; and as Adam Philips asserts, ‘there is no purpose to the child’s life other than the pleasure of living it. It is not the child, in other words, who believes in something called development.’ The panel was also cautious of depicting British children as living in a ‘world without play.’ Whilst the consensus was that in recent years children have less opportunity to play, due to various pressures on their lives, it cannot be said that children no longer play. The panel made recommendations of measures that should be taken to ensure children continue to have the time and opportunity to play.