2nd November 2018

Educational leaders and even the business world are trying to spread the message of the importance of play.

Last week I had the opportunity to attend the EARCOS administrators’ conference which was held in KL. One of the keynote speakers, Pasi Sahlberg, talked about education in Finland and reasons why they are scoring at the top of international exams and are now considered one of the best educational systems in the world.

The insights shared and the information given was fascinating and most often his points were counter to what we are seeing happening in many educational systems. The point that grabbed my attention the most was the fact that in Finland they prioritize play as part of the children’s educational experience. The Finish do not see play as a break from studying and learning but instead a crucial extension of learning.

Science is backing this up with numerous studies showing how play is an important part of children developing lifelong skills like creativity, problem solving, innovation, and courage. Here is a link to a short, interesting video from the World Economic Forum about the importance of play

Educational leaders and even the business world are trying to spread the message of the importance of play. This year IKEA, Unilever, National Geographic, and the Lego Foundation have banded together to form the Real Play Coalition to help combat the erosion of play. You can find out more about their initiative at: 

Dalat has always promoted to our community that a good education is more than just books and academic studies. Earlier this year we committed to replacing the current playground (next to the tennis court) with a new and improved version as well as investing in a new playground to be installed and located inside the elementary courtyard. We would love to make these playgrounds as amazing as possible for our kids.

That said, we have many needs throughout the whole school so we cannot spend as much as we would want to. I would like to encourage our parents to see this as a opportunity for our community to once again shine. Our Annual Fund this year has prioritized the playgrounds as part of the fundraiser so please consider giving. Your gifts will enable Dalat to invest even more into new and exciting learning playgrounds for our kids.

Written by Karl Steinkamp

Karl Steinkamp is passionate about Dalat International School and training up young people. Karl was a student at Dalat and returned with a degree in education as a student teacher, high school principal, and now Head of School since 2006.

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