2 young boys enjoying Gaga Ball with very big happy smiles.

The social & emotional benefits of playing Gaga Ball for kids

Posted by Kellie Macpherson on

In a fast paced world with bountiful distractions, more time inside and reduced interactions, our Australian kids, like all kids, need lots of opportunities that encourage outdoor play and social and community connections.

All kids have experienced a reduction in play in the last few years and it is now more important than ever that we provide inspiring opportunities for them to engage socially, build friendships and connections and in turn confidence. There is no better or quicker way to get kids active, engaged and social than good old fashioned play.

Kids playing gaga ball

The social benefits of Gaga Ball

Gaga ball is a quick and easy game to play, it does not discrimiate against age or skill level and with the right accessibility features will not discriminate against ability either. It is also a case of the more the merrier so is a very welcoming game.

In the game of Gaga kids will need to negotiate the role of the ball thrower, enforce rules and, they may naturally form alliances to strengthen their game, all processes that encourage social interaction. The more this game is played the more kids become used to the world of negotiation and group achievement and build social confidence in this process.

Playing a game with a big group of kids, with winners and losers and rules and negotiation and the messy nature of the process also builds resilience and this is something ALL kids need to learn and grow.

The emotional benefits of playing Gaga Ball

Feeling part of a community and group, and having purpose and drive is so important to the growth and development of young people.

With two young boys ourselves aged 10 and 8 and having experienced in our travels interstate five different primary schools, we know exactly how important games are to kids at this age and how they create the very bonds and friendships that are so important to their development and sense of self. Our boys having (not by design) started at multiple schools in the last four years have been in a constant state of needing to fit in and make new friends and the way they have done this is through games.

ALL and I mean ALL of their bonds have come from the playground play.

Why ALL schools should have a Gaga Ball Pit?

If you are a school that has any space that is not currently being used for a purposeful activity then you are missing out!

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