Meet Our Team
PEDAL's team members come from a range of backgrounds including psychology, education, medicine, and speech and language therapy. We're linked together by our drive to discover how we can use play to spark change in families, schools, and communities.
Beth is a Research Associate at PEDAL. She's interested in supporting babies, toddlers, and families in the first years of life, translating research to real-world impacts, and promoting children's own voices in research.
Stephen is an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellow and Associate Member of the REAL Centre. His research focuses on education for adaptability.
Elizabeth is a Research Associate with PEDAL and The Lego Foundation, interested in play-based educational interventions for children and cognitive development.
Christine is a UKRI Future Leaders Fellow and Senior Research Associate at PEDAL. She's developing ways to widen access to early, effective support for families to help babies and toddlers enjoy healthy and happy lives.
Jenny is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology and Education. Her research focuses on investigating the role of play in children’s social development, and examining how play can be measured.
Allison is a Research Assistant at the Centre, currently working to develop a digital professional development program for teachers.
Sally is PEDAL’s Policy Fellow. She works with the team to find ways for our knowledge and research to inform public policy, in order to improve children’s lives.
Zaheema is a Research Assistant working on the Healthy Start, Happy Start follow up study within PEDAL.
Katie is a Research Assistant working on the Healthy Start, Happy Start follow up study within PEDAL.
Laura is a Research Associate working on the Healthy Start, Happy Start follow-up study within PEDAL.
Paul is LEGO Professor of Play in Education, Development and Learning, and the Director of the PEDAL Centre. His research focuses on the role of fathers in children's early development.
Zhen is a Research Associate within the PEDAL Centre, currently investigating parent-child play, peer play, and playful learning.
Eloise is a Research Associate and Child Therapist, currently developing and testing a virtual book sharing programme for parents of young children to promote language development and support parent-child relationships.
Sabilah is a 3rd year PhD student at PEDAL, researching how parents have supported children's early learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sydney is a PhD student researching play therapists' experiences and perceptions of children's wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chika is a PhD student researching how the integration of neuroscience, cognition, child development and education can improve the experience of children in low-income contexts.
Dina is a 3rd year PhD student exploring Mexican teachers' perspectives on using playful learning in their practice, particularly in urban and rural preschools.
Kelsey is a 4th year PhD student researching the role of play in healthcare, specifically for children with chronic or severe illness.
Tilly is a 2nd year PhD student researching the ways play and booksharing can support families in children's earliest years. She's also a Research Assistant for the Centre.
Carolyn is a PhD student examining play and classroom talk, and how these are related to children's cognitive development.
Stephanie is a 3rd year PhD student researching autistic children’s experiences of playful interventions in South Africa.
Domnick is a 3rd year PhD student researching the use of play-based pedagogies in early childhood education.
Paulina is a 2nd year PhD student exploring how children behave before, during and after they interact with Hospital Play Specialists and what children think of these interactions.
Find out more about previous PEDAL members and what they are up to now.
Emily has recently completed her PhD, exploring how children communicate with their peers during play and how this communication may be related to their characteristics.
Krishna has recently completed her PhD, researching parent-child playfulness and its importance in child outcomes.
Vicky has recently completed her PhD, looking at the relationship between communication disorders and psychosocial adversities, and how play can be an effective intervention to promote children’s social and emotional skills.