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Hey teachers leave us kids alone? Can playtimes be enjoyable for all?

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Maria MrozORCiD, Dr Pamela Woolner



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Routledge, 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Playtimes in English primary schools are a perennial and mainly enjoyable event. They are, however, largely overlooked in educational reform and have experienced ‘benign neglect’. The paper presents the findings from a research project which investigated the playtimes of primary school children. Questionnaire data gathered by pre-service teachers focused on children’s views of playtimes, including the role of adults, and the children’s use of playground space. Whilst generally positive about their playtimes, a minority of pupils find playtimes challenging. Pupils recognise the complexity and challenge of the social expectations of playtimes. This paper proposes that perhaps the time is right now to focus anew on playtimes to consider whether change should take place, why and how this change might be effected.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Mroz M, Woolner P

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Education 3-13 International Journal of Primary, Elementary and Early Years Education

Year: 2019

Volume: 48

Issue: 7

Pages: 847-860

Online publication date: 16/09/2019

Acceptance date: 03/09/2019

Date deposited: 06/11/2019

ISSN (print): 0300-4279

ISSN (electronic): 1475-7575

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/03004279.2019.1665081


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