The Case for Make Believe: Saving Play in a Commercialized World

Susan Linn, Author . New Press $24.95 (258p) ISBN 978-1-56584-970-9

A ventriloquist and psychologist, Linn (Consuming Kids ) claims that the act of make-believe is disappearing. In her impassioned plea for its survival, Linn reveals that play has many benefits, including helping kids develop problem-solving, critical thinking and social skills. Play also enables children to explore their inner feelings, cope with challenges and promotes emotional healing. Linn reveals how she uses puppets to encourage deeply troubled kids to explore their feelings, pointing out that imaginative play helps all children cope with such issues as separation, anger and fear. Tragically, Linn claims, play is on a downswing, replaced by TV time and highly marketed media-linked toys and electronic media that discourage real creativity. In fact, despite the American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendation to prohibit screen time until the age of two, a study Linn cites reveals that 40% of infants under three months are regular screen viewers. The director of the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, Linn claims that the demise of play is a public health problem requiring an urgent campaign. She concludes with ways parents can incorporate creative play, while acknowledging the challenge of swimming against the powerful media tide. (May)

Reviewed on: 04/07/2008
Release date: 04/01/2008
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 273 pages - 978-1-59558-656-8
Paperback - 258 pages - 978-1-59558-449-6
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