Co-Founders of Global School Play Day to Lead Upcoming “Play Hour”

Join our next LIVE Zoom presentation,“Bringing Play to the World of Education,” with Scott Bedley and Eric Saibel, Co-Founders of Global School Play Day, Friday, April 10, 10:30am EDT/7:30am PDT. (Registered conference attendees will receive Zoom details by email.)

Play is often seen as a “reward” or as a break from real learning. Research on child development paints a different picture: play is a fundamental, biologically hard-wired part of our species – so how can we integrate unstructured play into the contexts of school and society-at-large?

In the fall of 2014, a small, dedicated group of educators took inspiration from Dr. Peter Gray’s TED Talk “The Decline of Play.” In his talk, Dr. Gray discusses how play is essential to the healthy development of all children – yet in the last 40-50 years our society has seen a steep decline in free, unstructured play for children, with serious social, emotional, educational and physical consequences.

Scott Bedley and Eric Saibel, along with Tim Bedley, launched Global School Play Day (GSPD) in ad-hoc fashion and in February, 2015, 65,000 students participated on six continents. In February 2020, the number of participants grew to over 530,000 in 75 nations. Despite this incredible growth, they believe we are still not at our “tipping point” of asserting the role of play in the context of school.

Join Scott Bedley and Eric Saibel for a glimpse into the history of GSPD and engage in myth-busting around play as a central tenet to dynamic, rigorous learning for all children – not to mention adults too!!

Scott Bedley is a 5th Grade teacher from Orange County, CA. He is an Orange County Teacher of the Year (TOY) and California TOY Finalist.

Eric Saibel is a middle school principal from Marin County, California. He is also an EdWeek and Edutopia contributor and proponent of standards-based grading.




“Play Hour” is a series of LIVE Zoom sessions every Monday and Friday in April at 10:30am EDT/7:30am PDT as part of the 2020 ONLINE Conference on the Value of Play.  All “Play Hour” LIVE Zoom presentations will be recorded and included in our online conference launch (May 1), so don’t fret if you miss any!

The Conference on the VALUE of Play
The Play Conference, as it is commonly known, is an annual educational conference presented by the US Play Coalition. The latest research and practices in the field of play are presented at the conference, which brings together play researchers, park and recreation professionals, educators, health scientists, architects, landscape architects, designers, planners, business and community leaders, psychologists, physicians and parents from across the U.S. and beyond. The three day event has been moved ONLINE for 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  It is our first-ever online Play Conference!