Dr Amanda Gummer on Play and Children’s Mental Health

Dr Amanda Gummer discusses how a balanced play diet can help children's mental health, develop skills such as resilience, creativity, and social skills. She explains how parents can support their children's mental health and the importance of having a joined-up approach between home and Early Childhood educators and encouraging learning through play.
· April 14, 2023

Dr Amanda Gummer is a Play Expert and child psychologist. Dr Gummer has a PhD in Neuropsychology, a postgraduate certificate in Higher Education and over 20 years’ experience working with children and families. She founded the Good Play Guide in 2012 to provide an independent, expert accreditation service for children’s products, which has now expanded to incorporate 4 further Good Guides now under the Good Play Guide Umbrella – Toys, Apps, Baby and Learning.

Dr Gummer is widely considered as the UK’s go-to expert on play, toys and child development and can be seen regularly in the media, including BBC News, Sky News, The Daily Mail and many more, offering advice on news stories and issues surrounding children, families and child development.

In this episode she discussess how a balanced play diet can help children’s mental health. She believes that play is a “silver bullet” for developing skills such as resilience, creativity, and social skills. She then explains that this balanced play diet includes active, social, imaginative, and free child-led play, as well as solitary, sedentary, and passive activities. Parents can support their children’s mental health by striving for balance, rather than perfection, and by playing with their children and giving them undivided attention.

Educators and practitioners in early childhood settings can support children’s mental health by having a joined-up approach between home and school and by encouraging learning through play. Dr. Gummer also recommends specific toys and activities to support children’s mental health.



Find the Balanced Play Diet here: https://www.goodplayguide.com/blog/balancing-the-play-diet/

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