In partnership with UNO x Mattel
UNO, famour for the popular card game, has developed a playground installation that is helping to fight loneliness in schools.
Loneliness on the schoolyard
For lonely children, it is often difficult to ask if they can join a group of others who are playing. UNO is a playset that is designed to help those children. UNO consists of a huge pawn, placed in half a circle. Every child who stands within this circle can participate. That way, no child has to ask if they can play along. It lowers the threshold, making it easier to all play together.
“At first we did not know that some children felt alone. But thanks to this playset, children started to say; yes, I feel alone. Maybe other schools have that too, but they don’t notice it. That is why it is great for those schools they can use this” said one of the Dutch students of the Hof ter Wijde primary school, situated in Utrecht.
For children, developed by children
The Dutch primary school Hof ter Weide is the first school to participate in this project. And its students also helped. They co-designed the pawn and created the games and corresponding emojis of the UNO.
Kids gather around the UNO playset Source: Brightvibes
How does the UNO playset work?
As it is supposed to be, it is pretty simple. Every child who stands with the half-circle participates. The children have been instructed that no one can be excluded who stand within this circle. Which game the children play, depends on which emoji appears after the kids turned UNO’s nose.
Student council members unwrap the brand new UNO playset Source: Foto: UNO
Talking about loneliness at school
The UNO playset is a fantastic occasion to address loneliness amongst children at school. For each school where a UNO playset will be introduced, it is a condition that the school develops a school program about loneliness. The playset is a fantastic daily reminder to remind everyone how important it is not to exclude anyone and help the children and teachers to look out for one another.
Would you like to have the UNO playset at your schoolyard?
It is UNO’s objective to get as many of these playsets on schoolyards as possible. However, as far as we are aware, the Hof ter Wijde primary school in Utrecht, is the first and only school so far. We have been informed that they are working on partnerships with local Dutch municipalities and other local public bodies, so the UNO playset can be introduced at other schools too.
For our Dutch readers; to apply for the playset, please cover the following topics:
- Does the school have a student council?
- Does the school already address loneliness and if so, how?
- How suitable is the schoolyard to house
In case you want to know more, please email Thijs Verheugen (firstname.lastname@example.org – Mobile +316 29 05 7171) and check out this website