Sunday, October 16, 2011

Play Pilipinas

As a kid, I remember playing in the yard and the streets with my siblings and cousins.  I hid myself strategically in Hide and Seek, I called "madaya" (not fair) when my big cousins wrestled me around Cops and Robbers,  I cried when my brothers didn't want me to join them playing basketball or baseball (well using socks as a ball). And I remember hopscotch and Jack stones were some of our favorites.  We did not have video games and kids tv shows back then and it was all normal for us to be running around and playing with our friends and cousins in our neighborhood.

Call me old fashion but I still would like to see kids running outside, laughing and giggling, sweating, with dirt on their clothes and even having a few scratches here and there.  That's the kind of playing I grew up with... and when I reminisce about those days, it never fails to rekindle happy thoughts, warm smiles and fun memories.  Indeed, playing at home or in school or with friends has a lot of benefits: it builds a happy family, warm and lasting relationships, and fond memories we carry through the years.  It sparks imagination, develops confidence and builds social skills.  

So it was a delight when my sister-in-law Sigrid and my brother Paul came up with the idea of putting up Play Universal,  a social enterprise that creates opportunities for kids to play.  They've been planning this for a year now and I am excited that their initial project is promising to be a successful one.

On  October 21 - 23, 2011 they will hold the first festival on children's play in Manila called Play Pilipinas.  This is the first on its kind held in the Philippines.  Their dream of promoting play as an integral part of development has snowballed into this big event.   Established educational and business institutions have joined them in this endeavor. Speakers from all over the world are flying into Manila to talk about importance of play.  

Of course since its a festival about play, there will be a lot of fun involved. Being the foodie that I am, I was fascinated with the workshop called Kitchen Playtime.  This will be hosted by a local TV food show host, Nancy Lumen Reyes.  And how fun could it be to do Chocolate finger painting, noodle art, the chemistry of popcorn and even the popular dish adobo.

Ahh it makes me want to be a kid all over again. Well don't we all wish we were kids again?  Because as kids all we want to think about is PLAY!  But then again, as Plato said:  "Life must be lived as PLAY".  It's time we take play seriously... LOL!

To Paul and Sigrid, good luck on your first venture!  May your kids continue to play like we used to and enjoy every minute of it.


  1. Hi Malou, my best memories of our fiesta in Solana is playing hide and seek with you and your siblings. Even then, Paul was the best in hiding and in seeking. Do you remember the mechanics on how the watermelon thing was played?

  2. gaya that is hilarious! I remember it so well. I think the watermelon game scared me LOL! Thanks for bringing up that memories again!

  3. There's nothing like being active at play! Running, climbing, biking, hiking....Wow! Just being out enjoying sunshine and fresh air!

  4. What a wonderful concept for children to learn, the good old fashioned way. Yes, you're right,Malou. Some of the best childhood memories are those of our outdoor fun. Great post! Thanks for sharing.

  5. I'm glad that Paul and Sigrid took the great initiative to promote play. With the advent of video games and computer games, it's about time parents consider to spend time with their kids and play outside.

  6. What a very great idea! After having spent an afternoon at my mom's house where my boys played with their cousins the whole time in the backyard. Made me think about playing sipa and chinese garter back in the day, too. LOL

  7. Beautiful post! On our block we have a family of four boys who are always, always outside - in the street - soccer, football - it makes me smile. They're not inside on beautiful days with video games!

  8. Annapet: yes, nothing beats that.. it was so much fun playing that way.

    Betty Ann; thanks for the support and for reposting it on your FB wall too!

    TagaTUgue: don't get me started with video game ughhh!

    Caroline: haha sipa? you know I was good with that haha. but seriously I was.

    Claudia: Im glad your neighbors do that. Once one is hooked with video games, it's hard for them to get out and enjoy the outdoors.

  9. Mine too, I ran around and played all day after school. It was good old days... now all the kids are busy with studying and playing the video games. I hope to raise my kids like how I was raised... at some point (as long as they are not behind in school)...


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