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Play Quotations

Play is fit for humans. 60 quotations, proverbs and sayings on it are here so far.


A child does not have to be motivated to learn; in fact, learning cannot be stopped. A child will focus on the world around him and long to understand it. He will want to know why things are the way they are. He won't have to be told to be curious; he will just be curious. He has no desire to be ignorant; rather he wants to know everything. - Valerie Fitzenreiter

A dull life summed up: could have played, might have played, and should have played.

Abundant research has shown that play during early childhood is necessary if humans are to reach their full potential. - Jeffrey Goldstein

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. - Proverb

Almost all creativity involves purposeful play. - Abraham Maslow

Both play or playfulness can uplift the mind; there is that chance.

Children engage in [free] play because they enjoy it - it's self-directed. They . . . enjoy the doing, not the end result. Once they get bored, they go on to do something else - and continue to learn and grow. - Sheila G. Flaxman

Dramatic play gives children the opportunity to develop consideration and control, make decisions and explore a fantasy world.

Education is not a preparation for life. Education is life itself. - John Dewey

Every age wants its playthings. - French proverb

Facts are the seeds that later produce knowledge and wisdom, [and] emotions and the impressions of the senses are the fertile soil in which the seeds must grow. The years of early childhood are the time to prepare the soil. - Rachel Carson

Fair play's a jewel. - British proverb

Fire and cotton cannot play together. - Turkish proverb

Growth and mastery come only to those who vigorously self-direct. Initiating, creating, doing, reflecting, freely associating, enjoying privacy - these are precisely what the structures of schooling are set up to prevent, on one pretext or another. - John Gatto

If animals play, this is because play is useful in the struggle for survival; because play practices and so perfects the skills needed in adult life - Susanna Miller

If we want children to flourish, to become truly empowered, then let us allow them to love the earth before we ask them to save it. - David Sobel

If you don't fail now and again, it's a sign you're playing it safe. - Woody Allen

If you must play, decide on three things at the start: the rules of the game, the stakes, and the quitting time. - Chinese proverb

Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world . . . - Albert Einstein

In play a child . . . behaves beyond his average age, above his daily behavior. In play it is as though he were a head taller than himself. - Lev Vygotsky

It is a happy talent to know how to play. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

It is better to play than do nothing. - Confucian

It's no time to play chess when the house is on fire. -Italian proverb

Kids don't resist learning; they resist teaching. - John Gatto

Letting children go out to play is one of the best things that parents can do for their health. - Roger Mackett

Listen earnestly to anything your children want to tell you, no matter what. If you don't listen eagerly to the little stuff when they are little, they won't tell you the big stuff when they are big, because to them all of it has always been big stuff. - Catherine M. Wallace

Man is most nearly himself when he achieves the seriousness of a child at play. - Heraclitus

Many of our greatest thinkers locate their capacity for original and profound thought in their imaginative abilities, first developed through creative play in early childhood. - Sharna Olfman

Modern education . . . has trained the child to regard material values as of major importance, . . . [Also, it is] usually biased, influenced by national prejudices. - Albert Einstein

Organized education operates on the assumption that children learn only when and only what and only because we teach them. That is not true. It is very close to one hundred percent false. - John Holt

Pausing to listen to an airplane in the sky, stooping to watch a ladybug on a plant, sitting on a rock to watch the waves crash over the quayside-children have their own agendas and timescales. As they find out more about their world and their place in it; they work hard not to let adults hurry them. We need to hear their voices. - Cathy Nutbrown

Plato wrote of the importance of freedom for learning, and he specifically mentioned playing at building in childhood to perfect knowledge that will be used later in life. - Joe Frost et al.

Play brings joy. And it's vital for problem solving, creativity and relationships. - Margarita Tartakovsky

Play depends not solely on outward circumstances.

Play is . . . a fundamental mode of learning. - David Elkind

Play is good, but folly is useless. - Scottish proverb

Play is hard to maintain as you get older. You get less playful. You shouldn't, of course. - Richard Feynman

Play is the highest expression of human development in childhood, for it alone is the free expression of what is in a child's soul. - Friedrich Froebel

Play is the highest form of research. - Albert Einstein

Research confirms that children's selfinitiated play nurtures overall development, not just cognitive development. - Jeffrey Goldstein

Self-initiated play is a basic mode of learning. Through such play, children create new learning experiences that they might not otherwise encounter. - David Elkind

Sound play had better not be forbidden, wholly or in part.

Teaching children about the natural world should be treated as one of the most important events in their lives. - Thomas Berry

The best classroom and the richest cupboard is roofed only by the sky - Margaret McMillan

The boundaries which divide Life from Play are at best shadowy and vague. - With Edgar Allan Poe

The child amidst his baubles is learning the action of light, motion, gravity, muscular force . . . - Ralph Waldo Emerson

The debt we owe to play of imagination is incalculable. - Carl Jung

The main characteristic of play - whether of child or adult - is not its content but its mode. Play is an approach to action, not a form of activity. - Jerome S. Bruner

The most effective kind of education is that a child should play among lovely things. - Plato

To be creative, stay in part a child, with the creativity and invention that characterizes children before they are deformed by adult society. - Jean Piaget

To play is to yield oneself to a kind of magic. - Hugo Rahner

We . . . grow old because we stop playing. - George Bernard Shaw

We are learning all the time - about the world and about ourselves. . . . We learn what is interesting to us . . . and we learn from what makes sense to us. - Frank Smith

We destroy the love of learning in children, which is so strong when they are small, by encouraging and compelling them to work for petty and contemptible rewards - gold stars, or papers marked 100 and tacked to the wall, or A's on report cards, or honor rolls, or dean's lists, or Phi Beta Kappa keys - in short, for the ignoble satisfaction of feeling that they are better than someone else. - Alfie Kohn

When the fun goes out of play, most often so does the learning. - E. Oppenheim

When we engage in what we are naturally suited to do, our work takes on the quality of play and it is play that stimulates creativity. - Linda Naiman

When we think of play, are we focusing on social, cognitive, motor, or cultural aspects of development? - Joe Frost et al.

With all the visible forms of play that we encounter, whether in schools, parks, malls, or cyberspace, we still overlook or ignore many play activities. - Joe Frost et al.

With the honest knowledge that one day I will play I can begin to live. - Cf. R. A. Salvatore

Without playing well, future progress might not be possible.

You are troubled at seeing him spend his early years in doing nothing. What! Is it nothing to be happy? Is it nothing to skip, play, and run around all day long? Never in his life will he be so busy as now. - Jean-Jacques Rousseau

You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. - Plato

You can play peekaboo without thinking about it, but we intend to show you that there is more to play than just fun. - Joe Frost et al.


Positive thinking quotations, Literature  

Bruner, Jerome S., Alison Jolly, and Kathy Sylva, eds. 2017. Play: Its Role in Development and Evolution. Washington DC: International Psychotherapy Institute. ⍽▢⍽ Originally published by Penguin Books in 1976.

Caillois, Roger. 2001. Man, Play and Games. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press.

Carlisle, Rodney, ed. 2009. Encyclopedia of Play in Today's Society. Los Angeles, CA: Sage.

Cohen, Lawrence J. 2001. Playful Parenting. New York: Ballantine Books.

Community Playthings. 2009. The Wisdom of Play: How Children Learn to Make Sense of the World. Ulster Park, NY: Community Playthings.

Early Years Interboard Panel. Nd. Learning Through Play in the Early Years. A Resource Book. Np.

Early Years Interboard Panel. 2005. Learning Outdoors in the Early Years. Np.

Frost, Joe L., Sue C. Wortham, Stuart Reifel. 2012. Play and Child Development. 4th ed. Boston, MA: Pearson Education. ⍽▢⍽ Best suited to advanced students.

Goldstein, Jeffrey. 2012. Play in Children's Development, Health and Well-Being. Brussels, BE: Toy Industries of Europe (TIE).

Lester, Stuart, and Martin Maudsley. 2006. Play, Naturally. London: National Children's Bureau.

Ryall, Emily, Wendy Russell and Malcolm MacLean, eds. 2013. The Philosophy of Play. London: Routledge.

Sanderson, Rebecca Cornelli. Towards a New Measure of Playfulness: The Capacity to Fully and Freely Engage in Play. Chicago IL: Loyola University.

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