The Power of Play

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The Power of Play at Wild About Play Forest School Nursery, Putney.


We love debating and talking about all things that impact our children and their emotional resilience from schooling to social skills, to pioneering collaborative minds that will change our world for a better tomorrow. If you feel strongly about something, please do get in touch and let us know. Equally, everything below is a conversation starter, so let us know what you think!

Here at Wild about Play, we are passionate about PLAY and about creating the right enabling environment for our children’s education and enjoyment. But why play? And why play in the outdoors?

Neuroscience now tells us that the great outdoors can inspire everyone’s imagination and that the multi sensory environment has a deeply stimulating effect on our children’s brains.  We also know that the skills that are imperative for the workplace of tomorrow, such as empathy, social skills, creativity and critical thinking, are all honed with interactions through play. The demand for higher cognitive skills that are matured from what we help develop will “grow through 2030 at cumulative rates” (McKinsey, 2018) in the workforce. We know that it can be difficult to focus on these in schools due to curriculum pressures, which is why it is vital for children to have time in the day to participate in activities with others. If learning opportunities are well designed, “we can play while learning within a network where learners support each other” (Gauntlett, Ackermann et al. (2011)) which can encourage children to unlock their own potential.

We believe in child-led learning here at Wild about Play, which ensures that, with encouragement and careful environment set up from our practitioners, our children create their own education usually without even noticing they are learning. It is well documented that “social interaction plays a remarkable role in shaping our brain and behavioural development” (Liu, Solis et al. (2017)), and having the freedom to create and collaborate gives children the autonomy to learn together and have fun whilst doing so.

Not only do children grow their knowledge and skills in our outdoor environment, but what we do also benefits them in the classroom. Studies have shown that “outdoor learning can boost children’s welfare and their performance at school” (The Guardian, 2016). As they gain self-assurance and confidence through their trial and error play outside, it is evident that they are more aware and eager to learn inside.

Learning through play is the whole purpose of what we do here. We can’t wait to share more with you as we continue on this journey together.


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Building lifelong cognitive foundations for physical and mental health Wild About Play Forest School Nursery