The Importance of Learning Through Play | Parenting Month 2024 webinar

Event details

Play is a powerful tool for children's learning and development, and we are excited to celebrate its significance on the first-ever International Day of Play!

🗓Date: 11 June 2024
🕝Time: 11:30 - 12:30 BST | 12:30 - 13:30 SAST | 13:30 - 14:30 EAT

Join us, together with The LEGO Foundation, for a discussion on the importance of learning through play!

Our panel of presenters includes Hal Cooper discussing the development of learning through play content and parent engagement from the ParentText Kids programme, David Stern, Laetitia Christine, and Zachariah Mbasu presenting on the Early family maths programme where parents play with children to introduce math using innovative technology, and Jonathan Klapwijk, a playful learning scholar, who will reframe learning through play for older children.

Discover how learning through play supports cognitive, social, and emotional growth, fosters creativity, enhances problem-solving skills, and nurtures a lifelong love for learning.

This event has passed, please watch the recording online.



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Hal Coopers is the Research manager for the Parenting in the preschool system in Malaysia project for GPI. The programme aims to improve learning through play and children's educational outcomes among preschool children in Malaysia.

Hal is also a DPhil candidate in the Department of Social Policy and Intervention at the University of Oxford. His research investigates the relationship between the home learning environment and children's foundational learning skills, and the Malaysian programme's potential to support children's early education in the home and improve child learning outcomes.



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Jonathan Klapwijk is a qualified research Psychologist from South Africa who is currently a Senior research assistant within the GPI. He has a demonstrated history and passion for researching interventions using a Learning through play approach, particularly for children, adolescents, and families in low- to middle-socioeconomic contexts in Sub-Saharan Africa.

He holds a Master’s degree in Research Psychology with a dissertation focusing on the validation of a psychometric measure used to assess the effects of a playful manipulative-based intervention on a variety of visual perceptual skills. Previously, he was a research lead at Care for Education, a non-profit organisation fully funded by the LEGO Foundation, where he assisted in the M&E, learning, and research of interventions aimed at implementing and measuring playful learning for underprivileged children.

Since 2019, he has represented South Africa as a LEGO Foundation Learning Through Play Ambassador. Jonathan recently started a DPhil in Social Intervention and Policy Evaluation at the University of Oxford and aims to research evidence-based Playful Parenting Interventions for low- to middle-income countries.



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Jill Popp is currently a Senior Research Specialist at the LEGO Foundation focusing on building evidence on learning through play, whole child development, and lifelong learning. She is particularly interested in understanding ways to support positive play experiences between caregivers and children within the home environment.

Her previous research focused on young children with chronic illness and the impact of stress on young children’s narratives and parent-child relationship quality. Along with this, she has worked as a researcher on several large-scale community intervention programs in the United States.