Play is for all - always

We want to open every possible door for children to play. And we mean all children – wherever they are, and however they experience the world. That's why we launched the Play For All Accelerator.

Play opens up a world of learning as diverse as children themselves

Every one of us is wired differently. Play helps children find and hone their strengths – giving them the best chance develop skills, to help them make friends, study in school and get set for grown-up life.

Evidence shows that neurodivergent children benefit from the sheer variety of ways to learn that come from play. For any child who prefers learning through moving rather than sitting at a desk, play is the ideal way to get up, experiment and get to grips with the world. For any child who likes order and calm (in a world that for them is already noisy enough) play comes with rules, routines and reassuring systems that everyone can follow.

That’s the joy of play: it’s as different and adaptable as children themselves.

 

Innovation that includes everyone and lets neurodivergent children shine

Design should keep neurodivergent children in mind from the start and invite all children to play together. The more inclusive the ideas, the better they are for all children.

So far, we haven’t seen enough classroom innovation that’s designed first and foremost with neurodivergent children in mind. Or, frankly, enough support in general.

Well, we think it’s time to change that.

The Play For All Accelerator

Accelerating big ideas, so they benefit neurodivergent children faster

The Play For All Accelerator is giving out a total of USD$20 million in grants to up to 25 start-ups, NGOs and social enterprises. We want to partner and mentor organisations who support autistic children and those with ADHD. We’ve got decades of research, play facilitation tools and expertise at our fingertips – and we’d love to share it with partners who can reach even more children.

How the Accelerator works

The programme works in two phases to create products, services and experiences that will strengthen and make a difference to neurodivergent children and their families.

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Who can join the Accelerator?

We’re looking for talented, driven organisations with a passion for creating ground-breaking solutions with the neurodivergent community.

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Last year, we partnered with Play Included

It’s an initiative that specifically helps autistic children build belonging and make friends as they play together (with the help of a few LEGO® bricks). Head over to our site to see what we’re doing with children, parents and facilitators – and download lots of resources for playing at home and in the classroom.

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And we're just getting started!

We’re here to champion neurodivergent children and make sure every child gets a fair chance to learn through play. Expect more grants, more partnerships and many more chances to play in the years to come.

Disclaimer: We use autistic-identity-first language

The programme uses autistic-identity-first language to discuss autism, for example “autistic child” instead of person-first language such as “child with autism" as research has shown that a majority of autistic individuals prefer this terminology (Kenny, Hattersley, Molins, Buckley, Povey, and Pellicano, 2015).

Nevertheless, we recognise there is variation in preferred terminology both within the group of people with a diagnosis and within parent/caregiver and practitioner groups. Some parents may prefer the term “child on the autism spectrum” and professionals often use “person with autism” or clinical terms such as “autism spectrum disorder” (ASD). To avoid repetition throughout this release we have also used, “on the autism spectrum” or “on the autistic spectrum”; which were considered acceptable by all groups.

LEGO® Braille bricks: More inclusive playful learning

LEGO® Braille bricks are just like the bricks so many of us used growing up - with a small but important change. The studs are in the shape of Braille letters and numbers, with the written symbols printed on too. Children with visual impairment and their sighted friends can play together, honing their language skills as they build.

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Media Inquiries

The press release can be accessed below. For inquiries, please contact  lon-legofoundation@ketchum.com 

View the press release

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