school holidays: THE 'LET'S PLAY TOGETHER' INITIATIVE
IKEA HAS DISCOVERED THAT WHETHER YOU’RE 7 OR 97, WE ALL THRIVE WHEN PLAY IS PART OF OUR LIVES
It makes us more creative, stronger and more active. It teaches us how to work together and care about each other. It sparks curiosity.
To launch their new LATTJO play range, IKEA has connected with leading Australian Parenting and Positivity Expert Doctor Justin Coulson, identifying the simple act of play as an activity we can all enjoy and see a positive impact in multiple areas of our lives.
Dr Justin Coulson says, “Play is crucial for wellbeing because it provides positive emotions that we may not experience otherwise. We become curious, creative, and optimistic. We are mindful and in the moment when we play properly. We experience joy, delight, contentment, and even love. And all of this is important because these positive emotions build resources that help us when times are tough”.
At times when family life is stressful with long working hours and daily chores the idea of playing together may seem far-fetched. Playing shouldn’t be another must, but sometimes adding a bit of play to the daily routine can make us less stressed and even a bit happier.
Tim Prevade, IKEA Play Expert said, “Playing is not only a way of making it easier for people to achieve a better everyday life – playing is a vital part of life itself. We know that play is learning for life and the LATTJO range has been designed, in conjunction with play experts and designers, to inspire young and old alike to play more and to add some fun to everyday life.
“The range features a guide to games and play for children of all ages, ‘Let’s Play Together’ as well as toys for musical play, products to encourage dressing up and role playing, kites, skipping ropes and hoops for active outdoor play and puzzles and board games for indoor play. The collection also features an app, the first IKEA play app ever released. The app is designed to facilitate playing together even when you’re not in the same place.”
Through play, people can learn about the world and each other stimulating creativity and bonding. The collection triggers curiosity and inspires both adults and kids to play together. The main idea behind the timeless LATTJO collection is to reignite the inner child within us and encourage all ages to play.
Dr Justin Coulson’s tips on playing more with your children…
• Limit time on devices. You can play on your device, and some research shows there are benefits. But playing with real people in your real presence does more for you and for your relationships.
• Be where your feet are. Let go of deadlines, agendas, and distractions, even if it’s only for five minutes. Focus on the here and now.
• Get involved with your children. Watch, listen, engage.
• Get outside. Throw things (like a ball or a frisbee), run, fly a kite, jump, kick, skip, or ride. Being outside is great for physical, mental, and social wellbeing. It builds those motor skills, improves health and fitness, and strengthens relationships. Studies have shown that fit, healthy children (who spend time playing) do better at school too!
• Make music. Even if you are not musical, playing some basic percussion, drums (saucepans), or simply dancing together to some loud music gets creative juices flowing. Both physical activity and creativity have been linked with wellbeing and it can strengthen relationships too.
• Dress up (or at least encourage it). While some adults don’t necessarily like donning wigs or costumes (because we’ve forgotten how to play!), encourage the children to dress up, host a ‘show’ or a ‘play’, and be creative. It teaches perspective and social skills, and develops them creatively.
• Get crafty. Cutting, pasting, painting, and creating are terrific fun for children of all ages, especially when there is a purpose to it. These play activities can develop relationships by spending time together or offering opportunities to share with others (through service, or just playing together), and encourage creativity.
• Play ‘old-school’ games like dominos, building blocks (like jenga), checkers, darts, chess, or cards. These games teach a variety of skills, potentially strengthen relationships through time together, and enhance cognitive capacity.
CLICK HERE to visit IKEA for more information and LATTJO details… & remember to ‘play it forward’ !