The LEGO Professor of Play has suggested ways that children might get the most out of being stuck at home during lockdown.
Paul Ramchandani, the University of Cambridge’s LEGO Professor of Play, has discussed what children’s time at home might look like, as families stay isolated during the coronavirus pandemic. In an interview with the Guardian, he emphasises the importance of child led play for development.
He says: “children will learn and enjoy different things from different kinds of play, and taking the time to play with your children, getting stuck in, is the most important thing”.
While it may be tempting for parents to want to replicate the school environment, the child psychiatrist sees the benefits of a less structured place than school, where children can explore for themselves. “Slow down and let the child complete the task themselves, however long it takes, because that is how they learn.”
The LEGO Foundation funds his role as part of the organisation’s commitment to help the development of children around the world.
“Research looking at the effect of parents being playful is still underway, so it’s difficult to answer the question about benefits of playful parenting from the science at the moment, but we do know that children being able to play freely is associated with better health outcomes and potentially lower stress,” he says in the interview.