The Right to Play

‘The Right to Play’ offers short summaries of theory, research and policy issues that can inform the implementation of Article 31 of the UN Convention on Children’s Rights. Section 1 is about the concept of play, the ways culture defines play in children’s lives, the role of play within early childhood pedagogy and children’s own views on play. Section 2 looks more closely at the function of play in supporting children’s development, including social, emotional and cognitive benefits. Section 3 is about the opportunities and challenges for realizing children’s right to play, including the pressures of early schooling as well as child work, and the implications of commercialisation and the growing place of new technologies in young children’s lives.