Degree Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)


School of Education

First Advisor

Megin Charner-Laird


The purpose of this thesis is to explore how informal play can influence communication development and social-emotional learning in elementary-aged children. In addition, ideas of rejection from play opportunities and the benefits of play-based learning environments were examined. These topics were explored through a comprehensive literature review that covered 18 articles, texts, and journals. It was found that informal play positively influences communication development and social-emotional learning. This is supported by play-based learning environments. This thesis recommends that teachers implement a play-based learning environment into the classroom, as well as opportunities for informal play and academic play during the school day.