Aim

Four kids rolling a barrel up a small incline

The Sydney Playground Project aims to increase children's:

  • Physical health
  • Mental health
  • Social intelligence

Our approach to achieving this is through the universal language – play.

Benefits of play

  • Be physically active, including both gross and fine motor skills
  • Build their imagination and be creative
  • Build friendships
  • Learn various social skills such as communication, negotiation, turn taking, rules/boundaries, co-operation
  • Learn risk management strategies
  • Become more resilient
  • Have fun!

Interventions

Our project is a school-based intervention to increase outdoor play by:

  1. Adding 'loose part' materials to the playground, and
  2. Helping adults change their views of risk associated with active play.

Hypothesis

We expect to find positive effects on children’s activity levels, coping and social skills. The method is easy to introduce and sustain and the strategies are replicable in every school playground in the nation. We also hope to contribute to policy regarding play, health, and education.

We believe that this simple intervention, which could be adopted in every primary school in the nation, will initiate a self-sustaining cycle of prevention for childhood obesity, bullying and mental ill health.

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