The report reveals a strong link between how many hours a week families spend playing together and how happy they are: Nine out of ten families (88%) who play five or more hours a week say they are happy, while only seven out of ten (75%) of those who play less than five hours say they are happy. One in ten (10%) families spend less than two hours a week playing.
Even when families take time to play, six out of ten (61%) parents admit that they are distracted by other things in life such as work, household chores and their smartphone. What's alarming is that one child in five (17%) says they are too busy to play and four out of five (81%) wish their parents had more time to play with them.
The report also identifies a generational shift in play patterns and the concerns that come with these changes. Parents are still concerned about the safety and sociability of computer games: 88% say they're concerned about safety on the Internet and 72% fear that children will be less able to think for themselves. However, the report also reveals that the next generation is teaching us to makethe most of the unique opportunities technology offers.
Children themselves are pioneering a new type of «Fluid Play» where they naturally engage in play that seamlessly blends real world, imaginary and digital experiences. To them it is simply «playing». The report reveals that the increased integration of digital games doesn’t come at the expense of more traditional games, as most children (81%) still prefer playing with their parents than alone, and three in four (72%) prefer to play with friends in the same room rather than online.
They might be worried, bur parents seem to be showing signs of adopting their children’s mindset: Over half (59%) believe technology can bring a family closer together and three in four (77%) believing digital play can be creative.
Almost all parents who took part in the survey (95%) believe that playing is essential for children's well-being and an important educational tool. Four out of five (82%) believe that children who play more will be more successful in school and work. Parents also rate playful learning (76%) as the best educational technique, compared to reading books (67%), teaching in the classroom (55%), interacting with friends (65%) and surfing the Internet (22%). More importantly, four out of five (83%) children agree that they learn better in a playful way.
Adults and children alike feel the benefits of playing together. Parents state that playing is good for their own well-being (91%) and that it even helps them to feel more relaxed (86%) and more connected with their children (64%). Almost all children who took part in the survey say playing makes them feel happy (93%) and helps them relax after a long day at school (87%).
The beauty of play is that it evolves and changes with each generation, yet its benefits remain constant. This report shows that digitalisation is providing more opportunities for immersive play. We will continue to evolve LEGO play to seamlessly integrate digital and physical experiences for kids to ensure that they can continue to benefit from playful learning.Julia Goldin, LEGO Group CMO
Lego’s «Play Well Report» is based on a survey carried out at the beginning of this. Almost 13,000 parents and children up to the age of 12 from nine countries were asked about their playing behaviour. The aim of the survey was to find out how and how often today's families play together. For detailed results, download the entire report as PDF.
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