Thinkfun turns their focus to the global youth mental health crisis and how play can make all the difference in protecting and strengthening children and teens. The company’s new initiative brings together stakeholders from all over the toys and games industry with the challenge: how do we build MESH (Mental, Emotional and Social Health) skills through play?
Mental, emotional and social health requires the ability to navigate change. Change comes at kids in predictable and unpredictable ways that can cause “problems” - moments or challenges they need to find their way through in order to be healthy and grow. Problem solving is a core skill that strengthens a child’s mental health in the near and long term.
Problem-solving requires practice. Most adults find it safer and faster to help kids by showing them solutions or jumping in to fix a problem themselves (and it is faster.) However, watching someone practice a skill does not build confidence or competence, therefore it is essential that kids experience solving problems for themselves.