November #WePlayChat: The Importance of Free Play for Child Development

Join us on Tuesday, November 19 at 1:00pm EST as we welcome co-moderator Kimberly Hart, Content Developer for AAA State of Play, to discuss the topic, “The Importance of Free Play for Child Development.”

Kimberly Hart is a play advocate, hiker, writer and volunteer. Proud mother to two fearless wildflowers, she firmly believes that #PlayMatters!

Below are the questions that Kimberly will use to guide this professional development opportunity:

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Q1. How would you define “free play” or “unstructured play”?

Q2. What are some benefits of free play that you would like to share?

Q3. How does free play benefit a child’s emotional health and growth?

Q4. How can we create more opportunities for free play for today’s children?

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#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 5 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY. #WePlayChat is the largest monthly Play based twitter chat in the world. This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


October 30th #WePlayChat: “How Play can Change our Relationship with Diversity and Inclusion”

Join us on Wednesday, October 30 at 9:00pm EST as we welcome co-moderator Brandi Heather, Chief Knowledge Officer of Amped2Play, to discuss the topic, “How play can change our relationship with diversity and inclusion”.

Brandi Heather is an Adapted Physical Activity and Play Development Specialist based in Red Deer, Alberta. As both a Builder and Instructor, she has spent 20 years using accessible play as the foundation of her programming and post-secondary teaching.She is currently Chief Knowledge Officer and Co Founder of AMPED2PLAY INC. where her

expertise and passion for accessible multigenerational play is highlighted in multiple programs including PLAY6S – finding ways for every person to discover and enjoy movement through inclusive play including Adapted DANCEPL3Y.

Brandi is passionate about play and the pursuit of bringing an inclusive lens to all structured and unstructured programming.

Here are the questions that Brandi will lead with us during this chat:

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Q1. How can play be a catalyst for change management, resiliency and adaptability?

Q2. How can we create sustainable learning from playful experiences?

Q3. What barriers to do we hear and see when we introduce play as a serious method for physical, social and cognitive change?

Q4.How does Play give the opportunity to build more inclusive communities, schools, sports, and recreation?

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#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 5 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY. #WePlayChat is the largest monthly Play based twitter chat in the world. This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


September 26th #WePlayChat: “How To Simplify the Messages of Play”

Farrah Zweig (left) serves as the co-founder/Director of programming at Student Fitness Experts and has been a Certified Personal Trainer and Exercise Physiologist for over 15 years.  She is also the physical education coach at a Los Angeles based private school. A graduate of San Diego State, she holds her bachelor’s in Kinesiology with an emphasis in fitness, nutrition, and health. Spending her initial years improving the health and fitness of adults and pre/post natal women, she turned her attention to youth fitness 10 years ago, after discovering a gap in opportunities for children to learn functional and applied movement skills. Her research interests focus on pediatric exercise science, movement and brain development, as well as physical literacy, play, and the social/emotional/behavioral connections with physical activity. Combining her education, experience, and joy of learning, Farrah has created a pathway to creating ideal learning environments for students that subsequently relate to benefits beyond the playing field. Please join us in welcoming Farrah to our chat!
Here are the questions Farrah will be covering during the #WePlayChat dialogue:
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Q1. How are we delivering the messages around play and what is most effective?
Q2 . Which populations are being underserved when it comes to reaching every person with a message of play?
Q3. How do we take effective messaging and tweak, add, and improve it to reach more people, more often?
Q4. What are a few quick and easy ideas we can share with families and centers to help make their communities more active and playful?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 5 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY. #WePlayChat is the largest monthly Play based twitter chat in the world. This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

 

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


August 28th #WePlayChat: Playful Advocacy In Communities

Join us on Wednesday, August 28 at 7:00pm EST as we welcome co-moderator Doug Smith, Adapted Physical Education teacher in Charlotte, to discuss the topic, “Playful Advocacy in Communities”.

Doug has been a Physical Education Teacher for past 20 years and is also a National Board certified teacher. He is currently an Adapted Physical Education Specialist in Charlotte, North Carolina. Doug has a blended his passion for play and education in a unique way throughout his career. He has led local play experiences and has helped provide grant capacity to bring new play equipment to his school https://vimeo.com/267631977. Doug has also been featured as a “Teacher Talker” breaking down the American Education system and how it relates to childhood health which you can view here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-AB2yUi4QF4.

Here are the questions Doug will be covering during the #WePlayChat dialogue:

Q1. How do you advocate for Play in a school or community?
Q2. How do you engage others in the community to play?
Q3. Have you ever organized a play event or gathering? What made it a success?
Q4. What are some strategies for building a playful community?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 5 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY. #WePlayChat is the largest monthly Play based twitter chat in the world. This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

 

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


July #WePlayChat On The Value of Recess

Join us on Tuesday, July 30 at 1:00pm EST as we welcome co-moderator Lynn Campanella, CEO of Playocracy to discuss the topic, “The Value of Recess.” 

For over a decade Lynn has led workshops on Play, Recess and Physical Literacy. As an advocate for child development and creativity, she has mapped out an educational platform that utilizes play as the conduit to help increase the physical, mental and social well-being of children. Lynn has developed a comprehensive recess leadership program called L.E.A.D. Recess and has lead a school board in Canada be the first to create a board-wide recess policy and supporting action plan to assist schools in establishing a quality recess experience for all. Playocracy Inc. is a Canadian social innovation company.

Here are the questions Lynn will be covering during the #WePlayChat dialogue:

Q1. What are some strategies we can use to create a positive recess experience for school administrators & teachers?
Q2. What are some of the tools you could use to teach good social skills at recess?
Q3. How do you maximize the benefits of recess to help children come back into class ready to focus and learn?
Q4. What are some best practices for sharing information about recess with parents and getting them engaged in creating a quality recess?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 5 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY.  This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


June #WePlayChat with AARP: “The Value of Play at All Ages”

Join us on Tuesday, June 25th at 11:00am EST as we welcome co-moderator Erwin Tan, Director Thought Leadership—Health from AARP to discuss the topic, “The Value of Play at All Ages.

Erwin J. Tan, MD, is a internist and geriatrician and the AARP Director of Thought Leadership—Health. While at AARP Erwin has developed the research that supports the health impact of perceptions of aging and age stereotype threat.

Erwin is currently working on healthy longevity and how play is important to health throughout a multi-stage life. Erwin previously served as the Director of Senior Corps at CNCS and as faculty a the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine where he was a co-investigator in the Baltimore Experience Corps Study. From 2003–2004, Erwin was a White House Fellow serving as a Special Assistant to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Erwin was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army Reserves and was born in Indonesia and is a naturalized citizen of the United States.

Here are the questions Erwin will be covering during the #WePlayChat dialogue:

Q1. We know play is valuable for children. How is it valuable for adults?
Q2. How is play related to health at all ages?
Q3. What healthy behaviors does play encourage at all ages?
Q4. How can we get more adults to play?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 4 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY.  This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


April 24th #WePlayChat: 10th Anniversary Conference “Lessons Learned”

Join us on Wednesday, April 24th at 7:00pm EST as we welcome co-moderator Ryan Fahey from Ottawa, Canada to discuss the topic, 10th Anniversary Conference: “Lessons Learned”.

Ryan is passionate about all things wellness, play and Physical Education focused. Ryan has worked provincially, nationally and internationally in various non-profit education delivery based roles. Ryan has also taught Physical Education in the Middle East where he also authored his first of three books on leadership development and wellness. He has also worked with the US Play Coalition for the past three years as their Play Ambassador Coordinator. When time allows, you can find Ryan running, working out, reading or visiting local coffee shops and parks with his wife.

Here are the questions Ryan will be covering during the #WePlayChat dialogue:

Q1. What were your biggest ‘takeaways’ from the 10th Anniversary Play Conference?
Q2. What were the main highlights of your Play Conference experience?
Q3. If you could sum up your experience and learnings from the Conference in 30seconds, what would you say?
Q4. What would you like to see at future USPC Conferences?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 4 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY.  This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


Wednesday, March 27th #Weplaychat: “Recess is Essential For Developing Young Minds” with the Voice of Play!

Join us on Wednesday, March 27th at 7:00pm EST as we welcome co-moderator Kariann from IPEMA (The International Play Equipment Manufacturers Association) and the Voice of Play, an initiative promoting growth in the quality and quantity of children’s free play and the use of playgrounds, Our March #WePlayChat will be focused on “Recess is Essential for Developing Young Minds”.

 

 

Here are the questions Kariann will be covering during the #WePlayChat dialogue:

Q1. Does your school currently have recess? If so, how long is it and is it structured or unstructured?
Q2. What are the consequences of taking recess away from a child?
Q3. Do you think recess positively changes a student’s behavior? Why or why not?
Q4. Do you think recess helps students socially? What about academically? Why or why not?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 9 countries, spanning 4 continents – all tuning in to connect around PLAY.  This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

We love sharing the voice of play on Twitter through our #WePlayChat.  We have our chats at different times on different days to get the most involvement across our membership.  You will not want to miss them! Tune in and to join in and contribute to the conversation around the value of play.


February #Weplaychat with The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA)

Please join us on Wednesday, February 27th at 12:00pm EST as we discuss, “Play Across The Lifespan” with Ahren Hoffman from ASTRA! Ahren is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) and Certified Play Expert (CPE) and began her career in the toy industry in 2007. In her past role as Manager

of Industry Relations & Partnerships at the National Lekotek Center, Hoffman evaluated toys and play products beneficial for all children of all abilities, at AblePlay.org, a project of Lekotek. Hoffman also provided support services to members of the toy industry to share the developmental potential and possibility of toys and play products for children. These collaborations allowed Hoffman to contribute to the creation of multiple toy gui
des and have the opportunity to be published in a manual related to the benefits of sensory play. Hoffman is active in the lecture circuit presenting to organizations and professionals in the field of child development as well as within the toy industry creating presentations and webinars for retailers, manufacturers and sales representatives. Hoffman also regularly contributes to a variety of print and online publications to advocate for the power of toys and play. Hoffman received her Bachelors of Science in Therapeutic Recreation with a minor in Psychology at Central Michigan University.

Here are the questions Ahren will be covering during our #WePlayChat dialogue:

  • Q1. Why is play across the lifespan so important?
  • Q2. What do play patterns look like across the lifespan?
  • Q3. What exactly is ‘play’ and what can you do to play across your lifespan?
  • Q4. What are the benefits of play for people of all ages and abilities?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 8 countries, spanning 4 continents – all tuning in to connect around the value of PLAY.  This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.

January 24th #weplaychat: “Mental Health, Play & Whole Child Education” with Kim Hordal-Hlewka!

Please join us on Thursday, January 24th at 6:00pm EST (4pm MST) as we discuss, “Mental Health, Play & Whole Child Education” with the incredibly enthusiastic Kim Hordal-Hlewka from Alberta, Canada! Kim Hordal-Hlewka is the Assistant Principal of Michael Phair Junior High that opened it’s doors in the fall of 2017. Kim has taught Kindergarten to Grade 9 Physical Education and was the Physical Education, Health and Comprehensive School Health Consultant for Edmonton Public Schools. Recently Kim spent four years as the Provincial Comprehensive School Health Consultant for Ever Active Schools. Kim is extremely passionate about the importance of connecting to the whole child through physical education, health, and well-being. In past Kim has presented for @EverActiveSchoolsAB, @AlbertaHPEC, @PHECanada, Early Childhood Conferences, New Teachers Convention,

International Physical Literacy Conference, National Healthy Schools Conference, and Shaping the Future Conference.

Kim firmly believes that mental health, play & whole child education are interconnected pieces. Let’s give her a warm welcome!

Here are the questions Kim will be covering during our #WePlayChat dialogue:

  • Q1. How does a whole child approach to play & education support healthy brain development? 
  • Q2. What are the necessary elements to taking a whole child approach to play? Education? 
  • Q3. How does whole child education and play prepare students for tomorrow? 
  • Q4. How do we know when we are supporting mental health through a whole child approach?

#WePlayChat is our monthly Twitter chat for anyone seeking to gain knowledge around the wide open field of play. Launched in 2016, our #WePlayChat participants come from 8 countries, spanning 4 continents – all tuning in to connect around the value of PLAY.  This FREE professional learning opportunity is a great way to connect with fellow play enthusiasts, teachers and experts from across the globe.