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18/11/15 09:30

New book encourages play

Book created with children to be given to all primary five pupils.

A new book created with children to promote the importance of play and improve child development, has been launched today by the Children’s Minister Aileen Campbell.

Play is crucial in increasing children’s physical activity and boosting their learning. ‘Play This Way’ will be given to all eight year olds in Scotland in the New Year and every library will receive copies.

The book brings to life parts of the Scottish Government’s Play Strategy in a way children will understand. The strategy aims to improve the infrastructure for play in Scotland.

Ms Campbell launched the book at the Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh with the children’s author Tim Archbold whose books include ‘Bagpipes, Beasties and Bogles’, children from Royal Mile Primary School and Starcatchers.

Ms Campbell said:

“We know the early years of a child’s life are crucial in developing skills. Play is such an important part of that as it provides opportunities to learn in a fun way and strengthens the bond between children and their parents and carers. As a parent of two young boys I’ve seen for myself the positive effect play has on their development.

“It is important to continue to encourage children to play and use their imagination as they grow older and I hope this book will do just that as it’s a great resource which will help us communicate the importance of play to children and families. I’m delighted that children were involved in the creation of this book including the fantastic artwork, and their creativity will now be enjoyed by thousands of children across Scotland.”

Tim Archbold said:

“Play this way involved some shouting and pushing, and there was some cheating and crying and going home with the ball. Some of it I just made up as I went along. Thanks to the children and adults who joined in the fun and helped in the making. I hope Scottish children, and their families, find something in the book to make them smile.”

Play Strategy Chair, Fraser Falconer said:

“The development of Play This Way is a significant piece of work for the Play Strategy and the Play Strategy Group. Play This Way and the supporting materials, will allow us to directly engage with children and their families about the importance of play and play as a child’s right, in an accessible and appealing manner.”

Notes to editors

Tim Archbold is a children’s author and his books include Bagpipes, Beasties and Bogles; Jimmy Zest, Super Pest and Be Good Gordon.

The book was developed with children from the Jeely Piece Club, Eccles Leitholm Primary School and Coldstream Primary School.

The exhibition of the book’s artwork will be on display at the Scottish Storytelling Centre until the end of November. The book is also being translated into Gaelic.

The Scottish Government published it’s Play Strategy in 2013. More information can be found here: