Mindful Play Session Notes - Session One - Play

Feb 14 2018

Holly Stoppit
Image credit: Winnicott, On Playing and Reality

We kicked off The Mindful Play Sessions last night with an enormous group of playful beings. I think it's safe to say fun, sweat, learning and laughter was had by all!

I started the session by outlining some definitions of play- What is play? 

Holly Stoppit
Image credit: Oxford Dictionary
Holly Stoppit
Image credit: Huizinga, Homo Ludens

The group then explored how play can help us grow and develop in all 5 areas of human experience:


Next, I moved on to discuss various theories on why we stop playing as adults, dipping into my dissertation research and dragging out Dottie Ward-Wimmer, Thomas Moore and George Land to argue amongst themselves as to whether The Victorians, The Media or School is to blame.

In this section, I spoke about George Land's TED talk, where he discusses a study he conducted on behalf of NASA to find the most creative thinkers. On trying the test out on 4-5 year olds, he discovered that 98% of them came out as creative geniuses! Watch his TED talk to find out the depressingly unsuprising statistics that follow, as he goes back to test the children again at age 10, and then again at age 15.

George land argues that the capability to access your imagination never goes away, we know this because we access it every night in our dreams. His message is clear:

"You need to find the 5-year old"

So we did just that, using the key that always works for me, Curiosity!

Holly Stoppit
Image credit: Dr. Kashdan

We explored curiosity through meditation and play and at the end of the session, the group came together to reflect on their experience. 

Holly Stoppit
Image credit: Participant's reflections

The Mindful Play Sessions continue, every 2 weeks. The next one is on Tuesday 27th February and will explore the theme of flow.

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