Giving Back Spotlight: Playworks
Play matters. This is the principle that guides Playworks’ mission. As they say, “Through play, children discover the joy of physical activity. They learn the social and emotional skills they will use in the classroom, in the workplace, and in life.” Unfortunately, many children don’t get the amount or quality of play they need every day. Playworks works with schools, districts, and other youth organizations that want to make playtime a priority for their kids.
Working with Kris Letang
We teamed up with hockey star Kris Letang to help bring the Playworks vision to life. Throughout the 2017 hockey season, fans were able to purchase a Kris Letang t-shirt with proceeds benefiting Playworks. We matched those funds up to $15,000.
Playworks can provide a number of services to schools and organizations that are interested. They have consultants who instruct administrators and teachers on creating sustainable and impactful recess programs. They offer on-site coaches to lead recess, in-school games, and developmental sports leagues. They also provide online training so that schools and districts can learn implement programs that are right for them.
The Importance of Play
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, play allows children to develop their imagination and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. It is a crucial part of healthy brain development and teaches children how to engage with the world around them.
When children get to participate in and shape playtime, it helps them practice decision-making skills, learn to work in groups, and helps them gain self-confidence. In a school setting, play helps children adjust to an academic environment and even improves kids’ learning behaviors and readiness.
Playworks’ website is filled with testimonials and case studies illustrating how effective the program can be. Here’s an example:
This is my second school where Playworks has been integral to a successful recess. I’d make sure that Playworks is at any school where I’m principal. When kids are engaged in playing, they can focus on the academics when they return to class." – Sara, Principal in San Francisco
Bringing Playworks to a School Near You
Playworks now reaches over 700,000 students across the country with a goal of impacting 3.5 million students by 2020. If you’re interested in learning more, or if you would like to bring Playworks to your school, you can get additional information on their website.