Full Professor at the Faculty of Human Kinetics - University of Lisbon in the Department of Health  and  Sport  Sciences. He was president of the Faculty of Human Kinetics from 2010 to 2014; a founding member of the Portuguese Child Support Institute; and president of the International Society for the Study of the Child. He is also representative of the Portuguese International Play Association (IPA). Carlos Neto has conducted investigation in areas such as motor development and learning; play and child development; life routines and children's independent mobility; and bullying in school playgrounds.


“The importance of Outdoor play spaces in the making of little scientists” [abstract]

Children’s pleasure of naturally moving in the outdoors contributes for their interest in researching about their physical and social worlds. I will identify pertinent aspects about the philosophy of teaching and learning models sustained on an overall perspective of the action of the body in the environment. In order for this to happen, it is also important to tackle restricted mobility and of physical activity, play deprivation, insufficient risk, adult overprotection and fears, and lack of participation in the contemporary societies. To turn children into little scientists, it is fundamental to engage them in a participatory pedagogical model characterized by the interplay of physical activity play, language and mathematical reasoning, and arts, applied in the indoor and outdoor classroom settings.


Ellen Beate Hansen Sandseter is a Professor in the Department of Physical Education and Health at Queen Maud University College of Early Childhood Education (QMUC) in Trondheim, Norway. Her primary research focus is on children’s physical play, outdoor play, and risky/thrilling play among children in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) institutions, as well as how to develop physical environments for children’s play, development and learning. She has also been involved in research on Norwegian children’s experiences of participation and well-being in Norwegian ECEC institutions, and projects about safety work, child injuries and injury prevention in Norwegian ECEC institutions.


“Risky Playing in early childhood” [abstract]

A natural part of children’s physical play involves engaging in play that is a bit scary and somewhat risky; risky play. Nevertheless, within an increasingly safety focused society, our desire to protect children has invaded their daily lives. This has resulted in a culture of caution among educators, teachers and parents, as well as restrictive rules and laws on children's play environments. This presentation will focus on what risky play is, why it is important for children’s experiences and development, as well as discussing factors influencing children’s opportunities for risky play such as parents and practitioners perceptions and attitudes, societal regulations and cultural frames/values.


Marianne is an Assistant Director: Policy, Support and Advocacy at Play Wales, the national charity for children’s play, in Wales, UK. She has over 30 years experience in many aspects of play and playwork, including play policy consultation and development. Marianne has worked with the Welsh Government to support the development of a toolkit to support local authorities to undertake statutory Play Sufficiency Assessments. She is an Honorary Research Associate in the College of Engineering at Swansea University and a member of Wales United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Monitoring (UNCRC) Group. 


“Children’s Right to play: an exploration of the Play Sufficiency Duty in Wales: perspectives from research and practice” [abstract]

Wales was the first country in the world to legislate for children’s play. The Children and Families (Wales) Measure 2010, Section 11 places a statutory duty on local authorities to assess and, as far as is reasonably practicable, secure sufficiency of play opportunities for children.

This presentation discusses the national context for Play in Wales.  It considers the findings of a small-scale research project, exploring how local authorities have responded to the introduction of the duty to assess sufficient play opportunities for children.  Drawing on this and providing examples of innovative practice, we will explore how local authorities have responded to their statutory duties.


Takaharu Tezuka is architect, president of Tezuka Architects and Professor of Tokyo City University.


1964 | Born in Tokyo, Japan

1987 | B. Arch., Musashi Institute of Technology

1990 | M. Arch., University of Pennsylvania

1990-1994 | Richard Rogers Partnership Ltd.

1994 | Founded Tezuka Architects with Yui Tezuka

1996-2008 | Associate Professor, Musahi Institute of Technology

2009 | Professor, Tokyo City University



  • Prize of Architectural Institute of Japan for Design (2008, Fuji Kindergarten)
  • Japan Institute of Architects Award (2008, Fuji Kindergarten) (2015, Sora no Mori Clinic)
  • Global Award for Sustainable Architecture 2017, UNESCO
  • Moriyama RAIC International Prize 2017 (Fuji Kindergarten), Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC)
  • World Architecture Festival 2018, School Completed Buildings Winner (Muku Nursery School)


“Nostalgic Future” [abstract]

Architecture is not a thing but an event. Architecture is the very powerful tool to evoke spontaneous movements for children. While we are paying a lot of time for safety, we are taking opportunities to get experience away from children. There are many things children can learn only when they are young. Don’t protect them too much. Let them tumble. Blues and scrapes are not a big issue. They are waterproofed. Let them get wet. They were supposed to be exposed to bacteria. We are the kind of creatures that were originally grown up in jungles. Human is not meant to be in quiet and clean environment.



Aida Figueiredo is an assistant professor at the Universidade de Aveiro – Departamento de Educação e Psicologia (University of Aveiro - Department of Education and Psychology). She has bachelor’s degrees in Nursing and Psychology, a master’s in Clinical Developmental Psychology and a PhD in Psychology in the field of outdoor spaces in childhood contexts, her main investigative interest.

She has training experiences in Denmark and Norway, visited international Nature Kindergartens and participated in working groups in the field of Outdoor Education. Aida Figueiredo has done several communications, in Portugal and abroad, and has participated in research and intervention projects in collaboration with kindergartens and elementary schools.

Aida Figueiredo is also part of the consortium “Invisible Limits Project”, promoted by Universidade de Aveiro (University of Aveiro), Escola Superior de Educação de Coimbra (Coimbra Education School) and CASPAE (Private Institution of Social Solidarity). She is a member of Special Interest Group - Outdoor Play and Learning in Early Childhood Education. Researcher in the CIDTFF – Research Centre on Didactics and Technology in the Education of Trainers.


“Invisible Limits Project” [abstract]

The “Invisible Limits Project” results from the partnership of three organizations: University of Aveiro - Department of Education and Psychology, Coimbra Education School and CASPAE, with the support of Institute for Nature Conservation and Forests. The “Invisible Limits” includes three axes: Educational Intervention, Research / Monitoring and In-Context Training / Consulting. The project focuses on the educational offer to children up to 10 years old, developed in articulation with Educational organizations. This offer takes place in nature - Choupal National Forest, in Coimbra - and aims to raise awareness and motivate children, families and the educational community for the importance of playing and exploration in nature, as factors of development and learning. Each child is challenged to give meaning to the world around them according to their time, interests, abilities and to build their own childhood.

Project authors: Aida Figueiredo, Ana Coelho, Vera do Vale, Emília Bigotte and Marlene Migueis.


Dr Martin is a physiotherapist and nutritionist and completed both degrees in Germany. In 2014, she completed a Ph.D. in Nutrition and Exercise Sciences at the Institute for Sport, Physical Education and Health Sciences, University of Edinburgh. Currently, Dr Martin is based at the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, University of Glasgow. Her current work focuses on health promotion of toddlers and pre-school aged children in childcare settings. She leads the Early Care and Education Special Interest Group of the International Society for Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity (ISBNPA), and was a member of the Expert Working Group for updating the UK's Chief Medical Officers Physical Activity guideline for children younger than 5 years.


Physical activity guidelines for young children: Is there evidence for recommending outdoor active play? [abstract]

Physical activity guidelines for young children play an important role within a larger system of health promotion. They have the potential to guide the public to optimise child development, and to provide measurable thresholds for surveillance on population level. Between 2016-2019, ten countries published physical activity guidelines for young children. The World Health Organization released their 24-hour movement guidelines for children under the age of 5 years in 2018. Outdoor and active play are widely recognised as a meaningful way to promote physical activity in young children. However, not all of the recent guidelines recommend outdoor and active play. I will present an overview of the international recommendations of outdoor and active play and present the scientific evidence that underpinned the 2019 UK Physical Activity guidelines.


Elida Kalpogianni is a Paediatric Occupational Therapist, with 23 years professional experience of working with children, many of which within preschool settings. She is currently working in the nursery of the Hellenic-American Educational Foundation in Athens. She has an MSc in Paediatric Occupational Therapy and has received extensive training in various therapeutic approaches, theories, interventions and techniques in Greece, the UK and the USA. She is currently a PhD student at the Institute of Education of the University of Reading, researching play in the preschool years.

In January 2013, she co-founded the non-profit organisation “PLAYING”, aiming at the promotion of play in childhood, through which she has taken part in various play promotion programmes.


Frederico Lopes holds a PhD (2017) in Human Movement Studies from the Faculdade de Motricidade Humana - Universidade de Lisboa (Faculty of Human Kinetics-University of Lisbon); a MEd in Educational Sciences (2009) and a Degree in Psychology (2002). Currently, he holds a research fellow at Faculdade de Motricidade Humana, working in community intervention projects and research activities related with children’s outdoor play, children’s participation and the design of playspaces. His other research activities and interests include children's independent mobility and place interactions in the urban environment. Frederico Lopes is also a playworker and co-founder of a social innovation project of play provision and advocacy called “1,2,3 macaquinho do xinês”. Within this project, Frederico Lopes has delivered several training workshops about children’s play to parents, teachers and teachers’ assistants, as well as loose parts pop-up play sessions in public space, primary school grounds and in early childhood education centers.


In 2004, Frederico Pinho de Almeida completed a bachelor degree in Human Resources Management at the Lusíada University of Lisbon.
Member of Carcavelos Parish Assembly from December 2001 to September 2011 and member of Cascais Municipal Assembly from September 2007 until October of 2011, when he became Councillor of Cascais in the areas of Housing, Social Action and Education and the municipal company “Cascais Envolvente”.
Frederico Pinho de Almeida is president of the Political Committee of CDS-PP in Cascais, since 2013, vice president of the Political Committee of CDS-PP in the district of Lisbon and Member of the National Political Committee of CDS-PP, since 2016.


“Cascais, play in an educating city” [abstract]

Cascais Municipality assumes a commitment with its territory that is sustained by a local educational policy on playing:

▪ Conversion of projects in 43 elementary schools and kindergartens (3-10 years) while removing curriculum enrichment activities and introducing more spaces and times to play with teams of entertainers (total of 305 entertainers), covering about 5000 children (Program “Crescer a Tempo Inteiro”);

 Creation of naturalized play spaces in school that bring children closer to nature, creating other challenges to play in freedom. This action covers 8 elementary schools.

▪ Creation of a local network of play spaces formed by 5 playrooms, 21 play libraries out of a total of 45 playworkers, promoting playing as a transversal axis throughout life.

The municipality has established partnerships for the assessment and dissemination of knowledge in the area of education and play, ensuring sustainability in its local policy.



Kristi is a CEO of Naba. She leads the entire company - both the kindergarten and the hobby school. She has been working in Naba since 2007. Her responsibilities are financial issues, contracting, communicating with clients, managing and developing kindergarten and hobby school.

In Naba we are developing and implementing a new concept of learning. In pursuing a renewed learning concept, we work to ensure that children's learning experiences and teacher education opportunities are varied - that children are active; that they move outdoors as much as possible; that their activities are diverse and life-friendly and the same time respecting children's interests, difference, strenght and support physical and social capabilities. We believe that the outdoor environment is a valuable and supportive learning environment and participation in the MLO project have motivated us and raised our awareness on this.


Laura Rodrigues lives and works in Torres Vedras, Portugal. She has a master’s degree in Integrated Crop Management and a bachelor degree in Agricultural Engineering, specialized in Agricultural Economics and Sociology, at Instituto Superior de Agronomia de Lisboa (Agronomy Higher Institute of Lisbon).

She also studied School Management and Education at the Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia - Universidade Nova de Lisboa (Faculty of Science and Technology - Nova University of Lisbon). As a professional teacher for the disciplinary groups of Agricultural Sciences and Mathematics/Natural Sciences, she has taught in several schools over 26 years.

For about 13 years Laura Rodrigues was the Pedagogical Director of the Escola Profissional Agrícola Fernando Barros Leal (Fernando Barros Leal Agricultural Professional School) in Torres Vedras. From 2005 to 2009 she was a member of Torres Vedras Municipal Assembly. Currently, she is Vice Mayor and Councillor for Education, Physical Activity and Finance of Torres Vedras.


Rita Cordovil holds a PhD (2010) in Human Movement Studies from the Faculdade de Motricidade Humana-Universidade de Lisboa. She graduated in Sports Sciences and took her MSc degree in Sport Psychology, also in the Faculty of Human Kinetics. She is Assistant Professor of Motor Development in the Department of Health and Sport Sciences and was vice coordinator of the Masters in Child Development in FMH. She is also a board member of ICCP (International Council for Children's Play). Rita Cordovil has carried out research activities on the areas of motor development, child safety and perception of affordances.


Head of the Division of Education and Physical Activity of Torres Vedras Municipality since 2004. Administrator of the municipal company “Promotorres” between 2005 and 2016.

Bachelor degree in Physical Education and Sport and master's degree in Leisure and Local Development.

Rodrigo Ramalho has over 15 years of experience in project management, particularly in the area of education and physical activity. Represents Torres Vedras Municipality in General Councils of several Groups of Schools in Torres Vedras. He also taught child motor skills for several years to children from 3 to 6 years old.


Rosália Maria Carruço Sanches is a preschool teacher. 42 years of experience teaching children, 20 of them with children with special needs. Postgraduate in artistic expressions in education. Has been in Timor Leste, teaching for 4 years.

Rosália taught pedagogical techniques at the Primary Magisterium of Caldas da Rainha (nowadays Leiria’s ESE). In Timor, apart from preschool, taught the Portuguese language and was internship advisor for early childhood educators in the educator training courses. Collaborated with RTL (Timorese TV) news, as well as with radio stations. Reviewed Portuguese language and taught its correct pronunciation.


With a degree in Psychology, specialties in Clinical and Health Psychology and Community Psychology, Sandra Nascimento has over 20 years of experience in the field of ​​health and safety promotion and education, child rights and consumer rights, as manager and coordinator of programs, action plans and projects, trainer and consultant. Represents APSI in various national and European forums and working groups on child rights, health promotion, consumer protection and child product safety.


“Brincapé” [abstract]

“Brincapé” is a project of the “Brincar” consortium formed by APSI - Associação para a Promoção da Segurança Infantil, 1,2,3 Macaquinho do Xinês and Brincar de Rua. It aims to provide more time, space and diversity in play for children to live the school playground and neighborhood streets in a more active, healthy and participatory way.


Silvija Zlatar, preschool teacher and mentor in the “Matija Gubec” kindergarten in Zagreb, Croatia. She has 25 years of experience working as a preschool teacher. She obtained her BS degree in early and preschool education at the University of Zagreb, Faculty of Teacher Education.  In 2018 she continued her studies for the master degree at the University of Rijeka, Faculty of Teacher Education.  For the last 7 years she has been the successful coordinator for Comenius and Erasmus+ projects in her preschool: 1 Comenius, 3 KA1 and 2 KA2 projects. She also has a substantial experience in participation in e-Twinning projects resulting in the Comet award for the best e-Twinning project in 2019.