One in three children spend less time playing in a week than most adults spend daily scrolling on their smartphone. 

The figure, discovered as part of a wide-ranging survey by the brick giant, was released by the company as it embarked on a major campaign aimed at encouraging kids to play more. 

The survey and campaign, under the banner of Play Is A Superpower, were announced om the eve of World Play Day on October 12. 

The survey showed that 70% of parents were using achievement-based activities for their children over unstructured play in the belief it would serve them better in the future. 

It was conducted worldwide, with 32,000 parents of children between six and 12 years old. 

LEGO is now aiming to inspire families to “re-prioritise playtime”, launching a bunch of initiatives from October 12. These include a week-long Superpower Academy in east London, bringing parents and kids together to solve a range of fun puzzles and activities. 

There will also be takeovers by celebrities on LEGO’s social media channels to encourage play; LEGO stores handing out free play mission packs to families; LEGO Education working with teachers and offering new play activities; interactive activities on and the LEGO Life app also featuring more challenges. 

Christian Pau, VP and UK & Ireland GM at the LEGO Group, said: “World Play Day is all about inspiring families to play. It’s no secret that the modern family schedule is packed full of responsibilities that can spill into time for this. The beauty of play is that it is limitless; you can play anywhere; with anything; and also, by just using your imagination. A world with more play means more creativity, innovation, togetherness, and most importantly, fun!”   

Dr. Sara Baker, Professor of Developmental Psychology and Education at the University of Cambridge at the University of Cambridge who has put together a top five tips for more play, said: “Play can supercharge a child’s future. Through play, children develop essential skills such as communication, confidence, teamwork and creativity that enhance every other area of their development, learning and growth. And play doesn’t need to take up too much time, it can be as simple as singing a song on the way to school or making up a new ending to your favourite bedtime story together.”  

Her tips include make it simple; on’t overthink it; find a good play mix; let your child take the lead and use what you have around you – walking back from school? How about a game of hopscotch on the pavement, or in the car for a long journey? Make a game of I Spy with your friend.

Singer songwriter, Paloma Faith who features in the campaign said, “I’ve always valued the importance of play – from when I was really young to every day in my career now. Growing up, I used my imagination to build a world full of possibilities and endless excitement. That’s why imagination is my superpower, and it’s something I encourage my children to explore in their everyday lives.
“Nowadays, it’s often hard to find time to set aside for play, but that’s why World Play Day is such fun! Whether it’s building a tea party or playing a game of hide and seek, you’re never too old to tap into your inner child and have fun exploring your own superpower of play.

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