Play more

Furniture maker IKEA commissioned a research organization to interview 11,000 parents and children in 25 countries in Europe, North America, Australia, and East Asia to find out their thoughts on children, families, and play (Facebook, PDF). I’d have loved to compare results for the rest of the world too, but I guess there aren’t as many IKEAs there.

Children overwhelmingly prefer playing with their friends and parents over watching TV.
When children across the world were asked to choose between watching TV or playing with friends or parents, they overwhelmingly choose to play with friends (89%) and parents (73%) with TV a very poor substitute for social interaction at only 11%.

Nearly half of the parents think play should be educational. Children disagree.
Nearly half (45%) of all parents think that play is best when it’s educational. This rises to two thirds of parents in China, Slovakia, Czech Rep, Spain, Hungary, Russia, Poland and Portugal. A further minority at 17% (China, Italy, Russia and US) actually prefer their children to learn things rather than to simply play. 27% think play should always have a purpose. As for the children, 51% actually prefer to play rather than learn.

Originally published at

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