Children’s Play: Changing the structure?

From Dragon’s Den, Rosie Wyllie suggested that I experiment with the rigidity of the structure of children’s play. A lot of the toys which children play with have set structures and rules, e.g. games such as Connect Four, Dominoes, Jenga, etc. However, many don’t, and they rely on the child’s imagination or spontaneous choices instead, for example in games such as LEGO, K’NEX, Building Blocks, Play with dolls and play on climbing frames. Children also enjoy creating their own rules, e.g. ‘You can’t stand on the blue squares,’ etc.

Perhaps I could experiment with making rules which play could have to stick to, e.g. dictating a particular order of play or confining child’s play only to a certain area. Written rules of children’s play would seem very unusual, as the spontaneous choices and experimentation can be seen to be part of what makes them fun. By ordering how these should be done, perhaps the children’s play can come to echo later life, whereby people’s movements are more rigid and preplanned (as I mentioned in an earlier post), with societal expectations being more prevalent, thus making people likely to do certain things and conform to fit in.


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