With Ronnie McQueen, a Playwork at The Yard 

Every child loves playing, and in addition to being fun and active, it can help to build lifelong skills. From pretend play, social play, independent play, to sports play — kids need a variety of playtime to fully develop as functioning people. We spoke to Ronnie McQueen, a Playworker at The Yard, to learn 5 ways that playing helps children’s development. Here’s what Ronnie had to say…

1. Confidence –

“Children can learn to take risks and explore their capabilities and limits through trial and error, which can help build their experience, knowledge and confidence.”

2. Mood –

“Playing is a way to process feelings and get things out of your system, which can result in a positive mood change, and can be fun.” 

3. Communication Skills –

“Playing can help build communication skills when navigating taking turns, implementing conflict resolution, and sharing thoughts and ideas with other children.”

4. Relationships –

“Playing can help to develop, form and maintain relationships with peers.”

5. Physical Strength –

“Playing is good for building physical strength, and being active is good for your mental well-building. Even getting the fresh air and sun can help to develop resilience and boost metabolism.”


Speaking with Ronnie reminded us of the remarkable power of play, and how truly transformative it can be in children’s lives. We hope you and your kiddos get out there, soak up the summer and play to your heart’s content! 

The Yard is an award-winning charity, offering adventure play for disabled children and their families in the east of Scotland. The Yard offers creative and inclusive play experiences in a well-supported environment, as well as wrap-around support for the whole family. The Yard was established in Edinburgh in 1986 by a group of parents, social workers and teachers, who recognised the need for a safe space for disabled children and their families, outside of school and home. For more info please visit: https://www.theyardscotland.org.uk