Children ‘need to play more to gain work skills’

Children will lack the workplace skills needed for their future because they don’t spend enough time playing, says LEGO executive John Goodwin. The head of the LEGO Foundation says the solution is for kids to spend less time in the classroom and spend more time playing. “Critical thinking and problem solving starts in early childhood development. It’s where the foundations are laid.” Speaking at Davos 2018, he hoped to put pressure on governments to make education more play-focused. If not, he believes that companies will struggle to find staff with the skills they need in the future, having “serious long-term consequences”. Mr. Goodwin is not the first to warn of the play issue. US psychologist and professor at Boston College, Dr Peter Gray, has argued that decreasing play in children has led to an increase in childhood mental health issues like anxiety and depression. Speaking of the Real Play Coalition, Mr. Goodwin said, “I’m very ambitious about what it can achieve.”