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Learning through play - does it work for adults too?

Lego identifies five types of play – physical, symbolic, with rules, with objects, and pretence. That sounds a lot like the tools that many learning designers working with adults use - role play, simulations and serious games are all increasingly used in adult learning. It seems that play is hard-wired into us as a way to learn, which means educators need to integrate play into learning design. At the same time, we need to ensure that we're not too playful, since many adults will disengage from forced fun. That means we need to create the right conditions for play by building trust and communication between learners, so that they will relax and engage, and make sure play is clearly understood as a tool for learning, rather than the time-consuming sugar coating on a bitter learning pill!

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