Playworks’ evidence-based services make a difference in our community.

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Playworks brings out the best in every kid, through play. 

We build a culture of play that enables kids to feel a real sense of belonging. Partnering with teachers, principals, and parents, we make sure kids have the opportunity to contribute on the playground, in the classroom, and in our community. A randomized control trial found that compared to students at similar schools, Playworks students were more physically active and teachers reported that students had greater feelings of school safety and less bullying behavior. Learn more about our impact. 

Anytime we can get students involved in games and activities, we’re going to see improved behavior, more focused students when they get back to the classroom, and I think the opportunity, particularly for the older student leaders, provides an amazing leadership opportunity. We’re seeing some of those students really turn around their outlook and have a more positive identity because they are seen as a leader among their peers.

Matthew Utterback

Superintendent, North Clackamas School District, Portland, OR

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Discover Our Impact

November 12, 2018

Playworks’ Values Extend Beyond the Playground ›

My first experience with Playworks was on a recess site visit in my capacity as a public health professional. I witnessed how a structured school play environment can also be child affirming, joyous, and a place for leadership development. Years…

April 5, 2018

For You by Hailey Nicholas ›

This is for you, the student who chose never to play. It is for you, the student who stood under his tree instead of kick a ball or run around the playground, who chose to be alone every recess, who…

March 5, 2018

The Changing Playground ›

It is raining outside, as it usually is in Oregon. Ella, a fifth grader, sits by herself against the wall at recess. She refuses to make eye contact with any of the kids running past her. She tells me she…

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