Education Now The Protective Powers of Out-of-School Play How do activities like sports, music, and dance sustain kids’ mental health and well-being? Posted March 23, 2023 By News editor Arts in Education Counseling and Mental Health Families and Community Informal and Out-of-School Learning Creativity. Movement. Connection. How do activities like sports, music, dance, art, writing — and all sorts of playful, self-directed passions — help sustain kids’ mental health and well-being? How can adults — caretakers and educators — best support children’s hobbies and passions? And how can they support and encourage activities that protect mental health in adolescence?Guests:Sean Cassel, assistant principal and supervisor of instruction, Seneca High School, Lenape Regional High School District, Tabernacle, New JerseyMolly Easterlin, M.D., assistant professor of clinical pediatrics at the Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California and Children's Hospital Los Angeles; lead author of study on team sports participation and mental health outcomesLorraine Orr, executive vice president and COO, Boys & Girls Clubs of AmericaHost:Aysha Upchurch, lecturer on education and artist in residence, Harvard Graduate School of EducationKey takeaways:Providing young people with opportunities to help others can reduce stress and create a sense of community and purpose. Play is the work of childhood and parents, caregivers, and educators should create time for it throughout the day.Remind students about teamwork and having fun. Nurture joyful activities to boost confidence and self-esteem.Resources:Association of Team Sports Participation With Long-term Mental Health Outcomes Among Individuals Exposed to Adverse Childhood Experiences (JAMA Pediatrics)Playing Teen Sports May Protect From Some Damages Of Childhood Trauma (NPR)Empowering Kids with Skills to Manage their Emotions and Build Resiliency (Boys & Girls Clubs of America)How Community Service Supports Students in Tough Times (Edutopia) Education Now A webinar and newsletter series to shape new approaches to challenges in education Explore All Articles Related Articles Education Now Understanding the Relationship Between Parent and Teen Mental Health Strategies to better support the mental well-being of parents and caregivers, with a view to preventing anxiety and depression in adolescents Ed. Magazine No, Pinterest Isn’t the Place to Build Lesson Plans Alum’s nonprofit pilots new play-based early ed curriculum in Boston Education Now Hope and Resilience in Childhood A discussion of concrete ways to support children and adults in developing their capacities to weather the challenges brought on by the pandemic.