Summer Institute 2021: Power of Play

This year saw unprecedented social isolation for kids during the pandemic, causing mental health issues, a rise in childhood obesity, and learning loss. Safe and healthy play, which provides so many social emotional and wellness benefits, will be more important than ever for children as they return to their school communities this year. That’s why we’re hosting the Playworks Summer Institute, a 2 day series of workshops and professional development opportunities for Minnesota educators to learn practical strategies and best practices for making play a pillar of their school community. We hope you can join us.

This year’s workshops will focus on Playworks’ strategies and best practices for leveraging play to:

  1. Maximize social emotional skill development
  2. Build positive school climate
  3. Keep kids active and engaged on and off the playground


Workshop Descriptions:

Workshops will be held in-person at Crossroads Montessori School on August 24th and 25th. Workshops are geared toward particular target audiences and many of the workshops build on each other.

Links to register and more information about group pricing and bundles below.

Playworks will provide a clock hour certificate for participants at the end of each training. Clock hour recognition is dependent on state and district regulations.We advise you to connect with whomever does your renewal units in your particular organization for verification.


Designing A Great Recess – Full Day

Lay the foundation for designing and facilitating a great recess that serves as a maximizer for social emotional learning and a driver of a positive school climate. 

This full day workshop (4.5 clock hours) is designed for educators who supervise and/or support recess at their school site. Participants spend the day learning about the power of play, games and activities for recess, and group management strategies for the playground and beyond.

Best for: recess staff, school administrators, out of school time program staff



Recess Policy – 2 hours

Identify strategies to ensure the sustainability of a healthy recess program, including the development of a recess policy and handbook.

This short (2 clock hours) workshop is designed for educators who plan for and support recess at their school site. It is strongly recommended that participants attend the workshop with 1-2 others from their school.

Best for: recess staff, school administrators, out of school time program staff


Attending the Summer Institute
Recess Systems Package

Our Recess Systems Package includes seats for Summer Institute and provides ongoing support for staff capacity development throughout the school year. The package adds onsite coaching and weekly game ideas to maximize play and recess to actualize social emotional learning, propel positive school climate, and foster an inclusive learning environment.

Learn More


  • 4 seats at the “Designing a Great Recess” workshop
  • 2-3 seats at the “Recess Policy” workshop
  • 3 follow up Consultative Visits at your school site
  • Yearlong subscription to the “Keep Playing” digital service for all school staff


Summer Institute

Individual Seats and Group Pricing
Individual Seat
Group Pricing
Link to Register
Designing a Great Recess Tues. 8/24


Full Day $150 $500 for a team of 4 Register
Recess Policy Wed. 8/25

1pm – 3pm

2 Hour N/A $75/seat for team of 2-3 Register
Questions and More Information

Contact Program Director Brandon Elsner with any questions or to bundle with on-site and digital services