Free Play as Children Leads to Adult Success
By Wendy Priesnitz
published in the journal Evolutionary Psychology has found that
people who recall having plenty of free time during childhood enjoy high
levels of social success as adults.
A team of three psychologists from the University of Hildesheim in
Germany surveyed 134 people about their childhood experiences with play.
The researchers found a significant positive correlation between
ample time for free play during childhood and adult social success. Free
time as kids was also linked with high self-esteem, adaptivity, and the flexibility
to adjust one’s goals.
While “it goes without saying that child play is not the sole, nor
perhaps even the most important predictor of social success … the
correlation we found in this study was surprisingly high,” the
researchers write in their article.
This research reminds us of something I and many others have written
about in this and other magazines: Some of the least formal and most spontaneous learning
experiences are the best ones.
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