Two good stories from NPR about kids and playing:
Old-Fashioned Play Builds Serious Skills
"Researchers say imaginative play allows children to make their own rules and practice self-control. "
Creative Play Makes For Kids In Control
"Organizing play for kids has never seemed like more work. But researchers Adele Diamond and Deborah Leong have good news: The best kind of play costs nothing and really only has one main requirement — imagination. "