This article from NPR Ed takes a fascinating look at the neuroscience behind children playing, and comes to the conclusion that it may be more important than you would think.
In studies done using cats, dogs, birds, and rats, free-form playing while they are young changes the areas in the brain used for thinking and processing social interactions, improving them in ways that did not happen without the presence of playing. In one study, it was even found that when measuring 1,200 genes “about one-third of them were significantly changed simply by having a half-hour of play.”
This article only reinforces our belief in the importance of play, and makes us proud to be named a Playful City USA by KaBOOM!, and especially to be the nation’s first Playful region! To learn MORE about play in America, why play matters, and the problems it can solve, visit the KaBOOM website.