"It is paradoxical that many educators and parents still differentiate between a time for learning and a time for

play without seeing the vital connection between them."
Leo F. Buscaglia

When children pretend, they're using their imaginations to move beyond the bounds of reality. A stick can be a magic wand. A sock can be a puppet. A small child can be a superhero.
Fred Rogers

"Play is the highest expression of human development in childhood, for it alone is the free expression of what is in a child's soul."
Friedrich Froebel

"The creeping culture of risk aversion and fear of litigation ... puts at risk our children's education and preparation for adult life,"
Judith Hackitt, July 2011

"The best classroom and the richest cupboard is roofed only by the sky"
Margaret McMillan

Pausing to listen to an airplane in the sky, stooping to watch a ladybug on a plant, sitting on a rock to watch the waves crash over the quayside-children have their own agendas and timescales. As they find out more about their world and their place in it; they work hard not to let adults hurry them. We need to hear their voices.
Cathy Nutbrown

"Let nature be your first teacher "
St Bernard of Clairvaux 1090-1153

"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world ..."
Albert Einstein

"Letting children go out to play is one of the best things that parents can do for their health"
Prof Roger Mackett

“The most effective kind of education is that a child should play amongst lovely things.”
Plato

Play keeps us fit physically and mentally.
Stuart Brown, MD

"Every child should have mud pies, grasshoppers, water bugs, tadpoles, frogs, mud turtles, elderberries, wild strawberries, acorns, chestnuts, trees to climb. Brooks to wade, water lilies, woodchucks, bats, bees, butterflies, various animals to pet, hayfields, pine-cones, rocks to roll, sand, snakes, huckleberries and hornets. And any child who has been deprived of these has been deprived of the best part of education."
Luther Burbank

You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.
Plato

“Play is the only way the highest intelligence of humankind can unfold.”
Joseph Chilton Pearce

“Play has been man’s most useful preoccupation.”
Frank Caplan

“It is paradoxical that many educators and parents still differentiate between a time for learning and a time for play without seeing the vital connection between them.”
Leo F. Buscaglia

“If animals play, this is because play is useful in the struggle for survival; because play practices and so perfects the skills needed in adult life”
Susanna Miller

“Play is the exultation of the possible.”
Martin Buber

“Play keeps us vital and alive. It gives us an enthusiasm for life that is irreplaceable. Without it, life just doesn’t taste good”
Lucia Capocchione

“Work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do. Play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do.”
Mark Twain

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”
George Bernard Shaw

“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.”
Rachel Carson

We destroy the love of learning in children, which is so strong when they are small, by encouraging and compelling them to work for petty and contemptible rewards--gold stars, or papers marked 100 and tacked to the wall, or A's on report cards, or honor rolls, or dean's lists, or Phi Beta Kappa keys -- in short, for the ignoble satisfaction of feeling that they are better than someone else.
Alfie Kohn

"Listen earnestly to anything your children want to tell you, no matter what. If you don't listen eagerly to the little stuff when they are little, they won't tell you the big stuff when they are big, because to them all of it has always been big stuff."
Catherine M. Wallace

"Organized education operates on the assumption that children learn only when and only what and only because we teach them. That is not true. It is very close to one hundred percent false."
John Holt

"Growth and mastery come only to those who vigorously selfdirect. Initiating, creating, doing, reflecting, freely associating, enjoying privacy - these are precisely what the structures of schooling are set up to prevent, on one pretext or another."
John Gatto

"We learn because we want to learn, because it's important to us, because it's natural, and because it's impossible to live in the world and not learn. Then along comes school to mess up a beautiful thing." - Peggy Pirro,

"A child does not have to be motivated to learn; in fact, learning cannot be stopped. A child will focus on the world around him and long to understand it. He will want to know why things are the way they are. He won’t have to be told to be curious; he will just be curious. He has no desire to be ignorant; rather he wants to know everything."
- Valerie Fitzenreiter,

"When we make a child afraid, we stop learning dead in its tracks."
- John Holt

"We are learning all the time - about the world and about ourselves. We learn without knowing that we are learning and we learn without effort every moment of the day. We learn what is interesting to us... and we learn from what makes sense to us, because there is nothing to learn from what confuses us except that it is confusing."
- Frank Smith,

"Modern education is competitive, nationalistic and separative. It has trained the child to regard material values as of major importance, to believe that his nation is also of major importance and superior to other nations and peoples. The general level of world information is high but usually biased, influenced by national prejudices, serving to make us citizens of our nation but not of the world."
Albert Einstein

"You are troubled at seeing him spend his early years in doing nothing. What! Is it nothing to be happy? Is it nothing to skip, play, and run around all day long? Never in his life will he be so busy as now."
Jean-Jacques Rousseau,

“I sincerely believe that for the child, and for the parent seeking to guide him, it is not half so important to know as to feel when introducing a young child to the natural world. If facts are the seeds that later produce knowledge and wisdom, then the emotions and the impressions of the senses are the fertile soil in which the seeds must grow. The years of early childhood are the time to prepare the soil.”
Rachel Carson

“If we want children to flourish, to become truly empowered, then let us allow them to love the earth before we ask them to save it. Perhaps this is what Thoreau had in mind when he said, “the more slowly trees grow at first, the sounder they are at the core, and I think the same is true of human beings.”
David Sobel

“Teaching children about the natural world should be treated as one of the most important events in their lives.”
Thomas Berry

"Our Children no longer learn how to read the great book of Nature from their own direct experience, or how to interact creatively with the seasonal transformations of the planet. They seldom learn where their water come from or where it goes. We no longer coordinate our human celebration with the great liturgy of the heavens."
Wendell Berry

“Children have a natural affinity towards nature. Dirt, water, plants, and small animals attract and hold children’s attention for hours, days, even a lifetime.
Moore and Wong

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