Lincoln Elementary Weekly Update

January 28, 2021

From Mrs. K

Lincoln families,

Over the past year, we have collectively experienced some really stressful times. Even though we are back to a somewhat normal school year, our students are still experiencing varied levels of stress related to the pandemic. As a staff, we have been working hard to keep our students’ social and emotional well-being top priority and continue to explore ways to support them.

At our students’ developmental level, unstructured play is a well-researched way to release stress. Additionally, unstructured play positively impacts a child’s ability to be creative, communicate their ideas and work through frustrations, and practice problem-solving skills. Because we believe in the importance of unstructured play and feel that this particular year is the a great time to give this a try, our school will be participating in the Global School Play Day this year.

Grade level teams have designated 60-90 minutes on Wednesday, February 3rd to allow for unstructured play in their classrooms. Teachers will discuss with their students their general guidelines and expectations and give some ideas for what students could do during that time. You may hear from your child’s teacher with ideas for what could be brought from home, but please remember that those items may be shared with others and may need to be cleaned when they return home.

If you would like to learn more about the importance of unstructured play in child development, here are just a few resources:

  • American Academy of Pediatrics clinical report

  • Washington Post article

  • TEDx video from Dr. Peter Grey, psychologist who has studied the demise of play and the rise of mental health issues

Any questions or feedback are welcome!

In partnership,

-Mrs. Kirkwold

Margaret Kirkwold

Principal, Lincoln Elementary School

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