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Play Value: The Influence of Playground Equipment

How playground equipment can influence children

Key areas of childhood development, such as social, cognitive and language development, are not the usual center of attention in playground research. As a result, the KOMPAN Play Institute set out to investigate to which extent play structures with a wide variety of activity panels influence these important areas of childhood development.

Research from the KOMPAN Play Institute shows that playground equipment positively impacts the development of reception age children. Play panels provide extra play value and can be used to advance the development of children’s social-emotional and cognitive development.

Read the findings of the KOMPAN Play Institute to know more about what kind of playground equipment educators and park planners should invest in for their particular user groups - and why.

white paper

Play value - The influence of playground equipment

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Definitions of cognitive play

Definitions of cognitive play behaviours

  • Functional play: Play which centres around enjoying the physical sensation that a certain activity provides, e.g. sliding

  • Constructive play: Manipulating objects to create something, e.g. building with Lego

  • Explorative play: Focused examination of an object, e.g. examining stones on the ground

  • Dramatic play: Symbolic, pretend play, e.g. dressing up as doctors

  • Games: Playing games that have rules, e.g. hide-and-seek