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We want everyone to celebrate play.

Let’s get Scotland playing.

Children thrive on play. Play is happy-making, brain-boosting, heart-pumping fun. Active outdoor play is great for children’s physical and mental health and well-being, and it helps them to grow their imaginations, think creatively and learn. When children play, they build relationships and learn vital social skills, develop emotional resilience and a deeper understanding of other people and the world around them. Play is the foundation of a healthy, happy future for all of us, which is why we want to make play a fundamental part of growing up in Scotland.

Away and Play at Waverley Station

One Friday afternoon, Inspiring Scotland went to Waverley Train Station to play. With a bundle of hula hoops, skipping ropes and chalk under our arms – as well as some nifty t-shirts and oodles of enthusiasm – we set out to get Edinburgh’s families, commuters and visitors playing. Why? Because play is the foundation of a happy and healthy human life. And because it’s a lot of fun. When children play outside they are being physically active, boosting their health and wellbeing now and into the future. The physical skills that you learn when you play stay with you, encouraging a more active and healthy life. When children play, they gain confidence and understand themselves and what they are capable of. Playing is constantly taking on new challenges with a smile on your face. Playing boosts your imagination, creativity and ability to learn and develop. Those who play, can always think outside the box. Children are happy when they play. It is how lifelong friendships are made and family bonds made stronger. Playing is easy and you never forget how to do it. Play is happy-making, brain-boosting, heart-pumping fun. We want to make play part of growing up for everyone!

Guest blog

Play is not just fun or nice, it is vital for children’s development

“We all have a responsibility, whether as parents or policymakers, to encourage our children to be healthy, free, rounded and grounded through play,” says Juliet Robertson, Outdoor learning and play specialist from Creative STAR Learning, in an article, originally published in The Herald.

Open letter in support of #AwayandPlay

Read the open letter signed by health, education, play and natural heritage leaders backing #AwayandPlay

Read the letter

Help us spread the word!

#AwayandPlay is a national campaign to get children all around Scotland playing outside. Throughout the year we will be highlighting places for families to get out and play and organisations holding play events.

What’s more we’ll be introducing Play Hacks full of great ideas to help busy parents and families make the most of their time together and get playing outside in simple, creative and engaging ways.

How to get involved

Get out and play! That’s the most important thing. We want everyone to celebrate play and enjoy spending time together having fun.

Parents can get together with friends and family and play, communities can organise play events for everyone to join in, play groups can promote their events and highlight the benefits of play to a wider audience under the #AwayandPlay banner.

Follow #AwayandPlay on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to get the latest updates and find out what’s happening near you.

Download an information pack

The benefits of play are huge for children. We want to help communities and play and outdoor organisations promote all the amazing opportunities there are for children to get out and play in Scotland. Our information pack contains key messages and social media ideas to help you to join in with #AwayandPlay.

Download a pack

Loose Parts Play!

Find out how to create imaginative, creative and fun play with crates, pebbles and bits of string with our Loose Parts Play toolkit.

Download our toolkit


Dennis the Menace launches #AwayandPlay in Dundee

Iconic Beano comic character, Dennis the Menace, joined the Minister for Childcare and Early Years and Dundee play workers to launch a new campaign highlighting the benefits to children of free and creative play.

Read more

#AwayandPlay is powered by Inspiring Scotland in partnership with Scottish Government. The campaign will highlight the benefits of free and unstructured play in encouraging imagination, promoting risk-taking, improving health, developing learning, and having fun. The campaign directly supports the ambitions of Scotland’s National Play Strategy and the work of Scotland’s national play body – Play Scotland and the Play Council Members. Let’s get Scotland playing!

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