Play, the Curriculum and Practical based learning.

Returning to school in September 2020 will be a time of change for everyone involved; school staff, school communities and most importantly for school children.

PlayBoard, as the lead agency for the promotion of play in Northern Ireland, continues to highlight the important role play has in helping children to adjust and cope with the restrictions enforced upon them as a result of COVID-19.  Numerous academic papers, publications and discussions globally are supporting the need for children’s play to become a priority in easing the path back to education.  In particular, recommendations are that children should be given the permission, time and space for play to help ease their transition back into the school environment.

In acknowledging this, PlayBoard would like to offer you the opportunity to join a webinar aimed at supporting school principals and staff in exploring how best to use the school environment, particularly outdoors, to support children’s health, wellbeing and learning. A place where children feel safe and are afforded the time and permission for reconnecting with friends, teachers and the routine of school life.

The webinar places emphasis on utilising the outdoor space and will share examples of good practice from schools across Northern Ireland who have developed their playgrounds for play and curricular activities.

By joining the webinar, you will hear about:

  • Working to address COVID 19 – N.I. DOH, PHA and DE guidance for schools reopening and the required measures that have to be implemented.

  • Importance and benefits of play in helping children’s transition back to school.

  • Developing school grounds for play and learning – share good practice from TOPS schools.

  • Taking the NI Curriculum Outside the Classroom – ideas and activities linked to curricular areas, including literacy and numeracy.

  • Pupil participation: Will children be involved in the design of the outdoor play zones? Are children’s views taken seriously? Are they able to make choices, within agreed boundaries?

Date: 3rd July 2020
Time: 11.15am – 12.30pm
Platform: Zoom meeting rooms

  • Angela Stallard Service Delivery & Development Manager
  • Shauneen McCusker Play Development Officer
  • Bernadette McCann Play Participation Officer

If you would like to join us, please email Bernadette McCann to register your place at

Once registered, you will receive a link for the event via email.

We recommend an early reply as places are limited!

We hope to record the webinar to share the learning with others, so be aware that by registering, you are giving permission to take part in this recording.

Looking forward to see you all there!