Can I join in?

Design School Kolding has been awarded a major research grant from Independent Research Fund Denmark to study the effect of positive play communities on marginalised children.

The grant is for 5,3 million DKK. Design School Kolding’s Professor of Play, Helle Marie Skovbjerg, is delighted with the grant:

- It’s fantastic, and I look forward to working with a fabulous research group with great people from Eindhoven, Cambridge, Aarhus University, the Danish Pedagogical University, VIA University College and two outstanding primary schools with great ambitions for their play, said the professor shortly after the grant was made public.

The project ’Can I join In’ will study how play may be used as a pedagogical tool in the inclusion work with socially marginalised children aged 6 to 9. Recent research shows a close correlation between social marginalisation and a lack of play competences. Focusing on that area could help to improve marginalised childrens’ participation in play communities and their ability to integrate into social communities as a whole.

Much of the project work will take place in two named primary schools where pedagogues, children, external partners and researchers will work together to produce a toolbox that will give pedagogues access to knowledge on children’s perceived inclusion or exclusion in play communities. The project goal is to produce new play activities that will invite children to take part in play communities.