It’s Time to Celebrate Play on June 11

Global research surveying more than 25,000 children across 36 countries reveals that as many as 73 percent of children don’t believe adults take play – and how it can help them learn – seriously.*

Isn’t it time we changed that?

What is the International Day of Play?

The United Nations General Assembly recently adopted an annual International Day of Play, on June 11. Organizations from around the world, including the LEGO Group and the LEGO Foundation, came together with the shared belief that every child can reach their full potential, with the time, space, and access to play.

Signaling this at the highest political level is an important milestone in elevating play as central to children’s learning and wellbeing. It illustrates the need to collectively champion and protect all children's right to play.

Learning Through Play at School

Play taps into children’s natural enthusiasm and curiosity to learn, and the evidence supports how play develops lifelong skills and boosts achievements in the classroom. Play engages students in the learning process. That’s why in formal education, learning through play is as an approach that drives student engagement, critical skills and learning outcomes. In fact, 3 in 4 teachers surveyed said playful learning is “extremely or very effective” at helping them teach standards compared to standard lessons.

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The survey of K-8 students and teachers also found hands-on, playful learning not only helps students learn, but 89 percent of students said it also makes them more excited to go to school. When students are engaged, learning becomes more motivating, memorable, and meaningful. And teachers agree, reporting that it engages their students more and 97 percent said it reduces their own feelings of burnout.

The positive impact of play on student and teacher engagement is clear, but 40 percent of teachers still say they incorporate it only once a week or less. What’s stopping them? According to the survey, teachers would use playful learning more frequently if they had more support from administration and parents, as well as downloadable lesson plans.

To bring play into classrooms everywhere, it will take parents, teachers, communities, and governments. This is the vision that drove the UN adoption of a day dedicated to play and will continue to underscore the need for even more time, space, and opportunities for play.

How to Get Involved

Ready to celebrate play during your school day? Download the free Educator Toolkit to get started. This special resource asks the experts – children, of course! – for their ideas on how to bring more play to the world. Use it on June 11 or any day to highlight the power of learning through play.


The Quick Guide outlines everything needed to facilitate the activity with whatever time and materials you have, while the student-facing presentation can be used to guide the class. Students will think of ways to help more children around the world engage in play, and by the end of the activity, they will be able to complete powerful “I can” statements.

  • For teachers: Use the toolkit with your students – it's that easy to learn and play together!
  • For administrators: Encourage your teachers and staff to use the toolkit and other resources. Let them know you support bringing more learning through play to your school or district.
  • For families: Show your support within your school and community. Try an activity at home and see the impact of learning through play for your student(s).

Visit to download the toolkit today. And when you’re ready for more, check out our other STEAM activities and comprehensive lesson plans.

Share how you are celebrating the power of play on June 11 with #InternationalDayofPlay. We can’t wait to see what you build and learn!

*LEGO Play Well Study 2024