play by Lawrence Cohen

Here are two lovely quotes by Lawrence Cohen. As I had no idea who this person was before reading these quotes, here’s a primer from his website

Lawrence J. Cohen, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist specializing in children’s play and play therapy. He is also a speaker and consultant to public and independent schools, and a teacher of parenting classes and classes for daycare teachers. Dr. Cohen is also the co-author, with Michael Thompson and Catherine O’Neill Grace, of Best Friends, Worst Enemies: Friendship, Popularity and Social Cruelty in the Lives of Boys and Girls, and Mom, They’re Teasing Me: Helping Children Solve Social Problems. His regular column in Nick Jr. Magazine was the winner of the 2003 Golden Lamp award from Education Press, and he also answers parents’ questions online at

Dr. Cohen is the author of numerous published articles in professional journals and popular magazines, and he has presented his work at professional conferences, workshops, classes, and public appearances.

Dr. Cohen attended Haverford College and received his doctorate in clinical psychology from Duke University. After an internship at Tulane University, he began a research and private practice career in Madison, Wisconsin. His treatment innovations have included the first groups in the country for husbands and boyfriends of sexual abuse survivors, as well as one of the first therapy groups for male survivors of sexual abuse. All of his work — with children, parents, couples, abuse survivors, and families — has pointed him towards writing about human connections.

“If we don’t play, we miss out on more than fun. Play is where children show us the inner feelings and experiences that they can’t or won’t talk about. We need to hear what they have to say, and they need to share it. That’s why we have to join children where they live, on their terms.”

& one more:

“When we are exhausted or when we are at the end of our rope, we tend to think that play will be just more of an energy drain. But when we engage playfully with our children, we find that suddenly we do have energy, both for fun and for finding creative solutions to thorny problems.”

Sweet. Check out his book entitled Playful Parenting and of course read more on the website! I’m genuinely excited about the inspiration that these insights have aroused in me and will likely be picking up a copy of his work as soon as possible. 🙂 Happy parenting and play times. 🙂

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