Brio Wants People To Play

There are many abilities and life skills that children develop via free play that they cannot learn in any other setting. Adults can still learn a lot more by adopting free play strategies into their lives. Aimed with these facts Brio the Swedish toy company is encouraging people to keep playing. As part of a new Facebook contest launched by Brio called ‘Liberate A Friend,’ the company is giving 500 euro to winners so that they get a chance to skip work and play instead.

The contest can be found on Brio’s Facebook page and will be open for entries up until June 1st. Friends can nominate other Facebook friends by explaining why their friends should be released from work for a day so that they can win the euro and play instead.

“It’s a fun way for us to focus on something that we think is important. Free play is being given less and less of a role, despite the fact that we know it is central to the development and creativity of both children and adults. We want to encourage people to keep their inner child alive and never stop playing”, says Sophie Elvefors, Deputy Managing Director of BRIO.

Nominate your friends to the contest:  http://bit.ly/1dwpkSK 

The importance of free play 
In recent years there have been several reports indicating that children are no longer able to play freely to the extent needed in order to thrive and grow as people.

In November last year, the Cambridge researcher Dr. David Whitebread was awarded the BRIO Prize for his research report, “The Importance of Play”.

Whitebread claims, for example, that the increasingly structured day at kindergarten and school prevents children from developing emotional and social skills to the same extent as previous generations.

Adult perceptions of potential dangers are creating an overprotective pattern that inhibits children’s abilities to discover, push boundaries and learn to handle risks in their own, playful way.

“Free play is not only important for letting children enjoy themselves and feel good. It strengthens their ability to empathise and be creative and teaches them how to see things from different perspectives. We want to draw attention to the fact that even adults benefit greatly from accepting more play into their daily lives. Free play enables us to continue learning new things and to develop,” says Sophie Elvefors.