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Education Bookcast

Feb 25, 2021

This recording is the fifth part of a multi-part episode on Professor David Lancy's book The Anthropology of Childhood.

In this episode, we look at the nature and role of play in children's lives, including questions such as:

  • In societies without many material possessions, what do children play with? Are there any toys?
  • What kind of games do children play? How does this vary from culture to culture?
  • What commonalities are there in play behaviour between humans and other animals, and across human societies? Why do human societies, and animal species, vary in their play behaviour in the way they do?
  • In what way is play an evolutionary adaptation? What is the "purpose" of play, biologically speaking?
  • How do adult attitudes to play vary across cultures?
  • How does play influence children's development?
  • What implications are there for education more broadly?

Enjoy the episode.