2020-21 Mid-Year Report: Innovating for Virtual Play

  1. Updates

When schools shut down across New England last March, we held firmly to our vision to make sure kids experience safe and healthy play each day. Used to seeing every student in their school on the playground each day, our Coaches were suddenly in their homes, attempting to understand the world of remote learning and working to stay connected to the school community they love

While we could no longer be in person with students, we knew it was more important than ever that students have the opportunity to play. Playworks responded to the pandemic quickly, and we’ve continued to adapt our expertise from 25 years of in-person play to ensure students have the opportunity to experience the social, emotional, and mental health benefits of play in a real moment of need this fall.

The first half of the school year has been full of innovation and impact. Check out our 2020-21 Mid-Year Report for full details but here are a few highlights:
Curious to see the evolution of Playworks’ programming over the past year? Here’s a brief summary of some of the ways we’ve adapted and innovated to continue serving kids during the COVID-19 pandemic:

We know that when kids do return to their classrooms, especially after this extreme period of isolation and turbulence, they’ll need play more than ever. 

As spring approaches, we remain committed to helping our partners think through the complexities of returning students to school safely.  Together, we can ensure that all children have the support necessary to navigate the months ahead.

To learn more or find a time to see Playworks programming in action, please contact Jessie Igoe at jessica.igoe@playworks.org.

More Updates


January 18, 2023

Building skills through play: adult engagement at recess ›

What does adult engagement look like at recess and why is it important? Adults actively engaging on the playground is important because it encourages healthy play at recess. Playworks’ programming recognizes this and highlights the need of providing a kind and consistent adult during the school day for students to connect and build trusting relationships that…

January 10, 2023

Understanding the Complex Simplicities of Play ›

Play is a behavior that is natural and has existed for thousands of years and across species. It combines a set of made-up rules or norms and a willingness to explore. Researchers, scientists, and doctors have studied the effects of play on kids–and adults–and understand that this natural behavior has tremendous benefits. As the American…

December 28, 2022

Looking forward to joy in 2023 ›

Over the last five weeks, we have been exploring the concept of joy. We’ve answered check-in questions on our Instagram based around joy, heard from five Coaches on Facebook about what brings them joy, and found out from students what about recess brings them so much joy. To close out the year, we have been…