What is inclusive play?
Children benefit from being outside, interacting with their environment, learning from nature and developing through play. Inclusive play makes these opportunities available to all children, regardless of ability and background.
Inclusive play doesn't mean that every element of play is accessible to everyone, but it does mean that the combination of play experiences adds to something that is equally great for each child. Some children can't climb to the top of a rope, some don't want to, others really need to. The same is true with quieter, more creative activities. Diverse and flexible opportunities are needed.
It doesn't need to be complicated, but it does require thought. It means thinking about what different children can access - what can a child engage with if they use a wheelchair, or if they have autism or get distracted easily? Can disabled and non-disabled friends and siblings play together?
• Access to a range of sensory experiences for children of different abilities
• Community engagement with children with disabilities, families and practitioners to identify best design approaches
• Awareness-raising and skills-building of play designers, architects, landscape architects and local authority officers to take on board inclusive approaches to play design.
Need more guidance on inclusive play? download our Inclusive Play booklet (pdf 381k)
- Sensory nature activities - connecting children with disabilities with nature and the outdoors
- Widgit - how this pictorial symbol language helps people with learning difficulties
- A focus on learning disability - benefits of the outdoors to people with learning disabilities
- Food Tastes Better Outdoors - using Widgits to promote health eating outdoors
- Encouraging play in Japan and the UK - a collaboration with the Association for Children's Environments in Tokyo
Sense stickers have so many uses from the classroom to the outdoor world. Useful for planning sensory gardens or trails and brilliant fun as reward stickers when encouraging multi-sensory exploration.