The LEGO Foundation has championed ‘Learning Through Play’ for over 90 years; showing how it unlocks key skills, fuels curiosity, sparks creativity and inspires learning among children across the world. But the reality is, free play is rapidly declining. With kids leading busier lives than most of us adults; piano lessons one minute, dance classes and science club the next, 84% of them wish they had more time to PLAY.
So, as part of The LEGO Foundation’s ‘Build a World of Play’ campaign, in 2022, we wanted to remind parents, carers and families across the world just how important free play really is.
We needed to find a way to encourage more free play for kids everywhere. By reaching and educating families – but we didn’t want to do it in a traditional way…
So, we created an incredibly unplayful scenario (yes, really), to show people just how simple free play can be.
Introducing: ‘The Most Boring Room Ever’.
A social experiment film like no other. Featuring six unsuspecting kids. One empty room. One roll of paper.
Sounds pretty dull, right?
Actually, what unfolded during the experiment was the furthest thing from boring. The kids, with their incredible imaginations created paper forts, superhero capes, robots and even fashion shows to entertain themselves.
The film captured every giggle, spark and smile that was unlocked as soon as kids were left to play freely… showing parents and carers just how simple play can be. And most importantly, how it can come from anywhere… and anything.
What’s more, the whole experiment was done without a single word spoken, showing how actions truly speak louder than words – letting play transcend languages to reach families all over the world, from the UK to Africa.
Our film was released widely on the LEGO Foundation’s and LEGO Group’s social channels, generating over 286K organic views across YouTube, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. It was also a hit among industry media, securing coverage with a reach of over 11.5M.
The experiment inspired families across the world and started a wave of ‘free play’ content on social media. Parents and carers started to post how they are turning everyday moments into something playful for their children. Resulting in reams of beautifully playful videos that secured over 7.1 million impressions and 629K views.
But best and most importantly of all, our film ignited an important conversation among leading play therapists, educators, child mental health specialists, paediatricians and parents, gaining their invaluable support and validation on the importance of free play.
A truly integrated campaign that inspired the world to see play in a different way.