September 2021

Play to cope with change

Let play unlock your child’s inner superhero in tough times

The LEGO Foundation
"You’re much stronger than you think you are. Trust me."

Being a child brings lots of big, scary moments. Starting school, standing up in front of class or crossing fingers and toes you’ll be picked for the sports team all set nerves rattling.

But what about bigger uncertainties no one can control? Like wars, natural disasters, or global pandemics? How do children develop the resilience they need to cope?

When times are uncertain play becomes even more important.

Anxiety and resilience: two ends of the same see-saw

We’re all born with a certain amount of natural resilience. And we can expect life to throw a certain amount of stress at us. Whether our see-saw tips towards the stressful side or not depends on the things we do to build and protect our resilience from day one.

For children, having a parent or caregiver that loves them is the best possible resilience booster. Time and again, we’ve seen that play only makes that bond stronger.

That’s not all it can do.

Play helps children find their inner superhero

We’re serious. Research shows that playing through problems – no matter how huge – relieves anxiety, builds confidence and brings children and their families closer.

Three ways play saves the day

Play lets children show us how they feel (and vent if they need to)
Play builds confidence when life tries to shake it
Play’s good for grown-ups, too

Join our free online course to learn simple ways to parent playfully

Thousands of people have signed up to our nine-module, learn-at-your-own-pace online course. You’ll look at life from your child’s point of view, and get plenty of practical tips for helping them manage emotional ups and downs through play.

Enroll here

Ready to play?

When children play, they learn. They solve problems, think strategically, relate to others, and manage life’s ups and downs. Play helps children learn how to learn – and love learning. We've gathered some of our favourite games. You can play them anywhere – using things you find at home.

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