Play and Toys for All

LUDI launches its first Training School, that will take place at the Zuyd University, Heerlen (NL), from April 18th to 21st, 2017.

“Play and Toys for All” is now open to  49 participants:

  • 22 Trainees from European countries. No tuition fee will be requested. International students will receive a grant of 450€ to cover all their expenses, as defined by the LUDI Action  and the Organizing Committee.
  • 27 Trainees from the Zuyd University and the Euregio Maas-Rijn. No tuition fee will be requested.

Description & Objectives

The LUDI Training School is a vehicle to share the collected and the new knowledge developed within the COST Action TD1309 LUDI “Play for Children with Disabilities” ( and to disseminate best practices in the field of play for children with disabilities.  
The aim of the event is to train participants who have an interest in the main research topics of LUDI: play, children with disabilities, societal barriers, play for the sake of play, toys and technology for play, inclusive play.
The LUDI Training School will show play for children with disabilities as a holistic concept: an activity that happens thanks to a ludic and effective encounter between a child with some type of impairment/s and his or her life contexts, made of persons (peers, adults) – thus relationships, attitudes and psycho-emotional elements – but also of toys, technologies, natural or built environments.
To reach this purpose, the LUDI Training School will mirror the inter-professional approach of the network.
The main objectives of the Training School and their relation to the LUDI vision:

  • showing the approach “play for the sake of play”: play is a right and a fundamental, free and necessary activity in childhood;
  • building an approach to play that takes into consideration the whole person within his/her life context/s, from a multidisciplinary point of view;
  • improve the awareness of the importance of inclusive play;
  • showing how society can encourage and support play for the sake of play for all children;
  • sharing information and knowledge about the concepts of usability and accessibility related to toys, instruments and technologies;
  • adapting a User Centred Design approach.


The LUDI Training School is open for applicants with different degrees (BSc, MSc., PhD, post-doc) and from different disciplines. Indeed, the dual purpose of the School is to bring together Trainees from different research fields such as: psychology, social sciences, sociology, occupational therapy, design, engineering, computer science, communication designers, etc. 

The School will be organised into lectures and practical activities and the Trainees will be divided into multisciplinary teams. The Trainees will have the opportunity to gain knowledge and experience about the main topics by engaging with the voices of children with disabilities, parents, educators and therapists and other significant stakeholders who will be invited to be part of the event.

Expected outputs

The Training School would like to allow the Trainees to achieve the following competences/objectives:

  • understanding and elaborating on concepts like play, inclusive play, play for the sake of play, play-like activities, playfulness, playability, the cultural influence on play;
  • understanding and elaborating on the daily challenges for children with different types of impairment, aged 0-18 years, regarding play, play opportunities, playfulness and the environmental influence;
  • identifying the ableist norms and values (e.g. expectation about human capacities (or abilities) and modalities of functioning, ‘expected traits’ of players etc.) embedded within ‘mainstream’ products, environments and also types of play and games, and try to challenge and overcome them during the experimental activities.
  • Besides the new knowledge participants will get the opportunity to apply this in working in subgroups together with children and their challenges regarding playing with toys.


December 23rd, 2016 – Opening the submission period for participants
February 5th, 2017 – Deadline for applications for participants
February 12th, 2017 – Deadline for applications for Dutch and local students from the Euregio Maas-Rijn
February 15th, 2017 – Notification of the acceptance
February 22nd, 2017 – Deadline by which you are required to confirm your attendance, please

Local Organising Committee

Rianne Jansens, Zuyd University
Renée van den Heuvel, Zuyd University

Scientific and Organising Committee

Serenella Besio, University of Valle d’Aosta
Daniela Bulgarelli, University of Valle d’Aosta  
Iolanda Iacono, Glitch Factory S.r.l. 
Rianne Jansens, Zuyd University
Angharad Beckett, University of Leeds
Odile Perino, FM2J
Maria Mizzi, Inspire – The Foundation for Inclusion