Play in Early Adolescence

This project investigates play at school for children aged 11 to 13 years. The rationale for this study is grounded in the well accepted view that play is important to children of all ages, but that it declines as children move through the years of schooling.

colourful image of children jumpingA comparison of how children in their last year of primary school and in the first year of high school interact, socialise and spend their break times will enable clearer understandings to be developed about what children need in this transitioning year, what they struggle with, and how schools can better meet their needs for play in the day.

The study aims to investigate:

  • How does the play of children in the last year of primary school compare with the first year of high school?
  • What are the barriers and enablers to play for young adolescents at school?
  • What is available in schools to support and facilitate opportunities for play?
  • What are the implications for transition to high school?

The expected outcome of this research is to generate new insights into play for the 11 to 13 age range, an age typically neglected by research. It will provide evidence which demonstrates the contextual impact on play and how the environment limits, promotes or alters play opportunities.

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The Partner Organisations are:

Commissioner for Children and Young people logoPlay Australia Logo