About Me

I'm Alanna. Teacher and mama to four little ones.

Hey friend! 

You may have found me after visiting our community on Instagram or you stumbled on my page by chance, however it happened, I'm happy you're here. Motherhood isn't easy, especially when you're juggling time with kids and working… it can feel like herding cats. That’s why it was important for me to teach my kids to play independently because let’s face it, being able to do it all is a myth.

When I founded Play.Learn.Thrive., I desired to help parents like you who also wanted their kids to play independently. During my 10 years of teaching in Connecticut's public school system I taught several students who struggled with motivation and confidence.  I experienced some similarities with my kids at home, which Ied me to do my own research about the importance of play in early childhood development. 

I founded Play.Learn.Thrive to teach you what I've learned and to make life a little easier for us! Through my courses and resources, I'll show you how to use independent and unstructured play to encourage problem-solving, critical thinking, and self-reliance. I'm excited for you to join me on this journey towards happier, more confident kids, one play session at a time.


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What We Offer

Play. Learn. Thrive. was created to help parents understand the importance of play and how it impacts development and learning.

Our Core Values

At Play. Learn. Thrive. we believe that bringing purposeful and independent play back to childhood would transform our society.




Online courses, e-books, digital art, printable activities for kids and educational materials.


free resources

Downloads + Printable Resources

Free resources and tools that can help guide you to creating a space that encourages purposeful and independent play.



Free Content

Parenting tips, toy recommendations, gift guides – the blog provides this information (and more!)


'I thought this created a clean, less stress play space. But I wasn’t thinking about purposeful play and didn’t really understand it.'

Before taking the Play Learn Thrive program I would periodically go through toys the kids weren't playing with and downsize. I thought this created a clean, less stress play space. But I wasn't thinking about purposeful play and didn't really understand it. What I discovered during the process of my playroom redo was how much my kids enjoyed some of the toys I had hidden away – I went through everything in one day and my kids were happy to play by themselves with Legos and Magnatiles all day! I ended up going through the toys in the kids' rooms too and felt an emotional clog lifted once we filled an entire truck bed up with toys to donate. Pickup time is shorter and we are all happier now that the toys are more thoughtful and less over-stimulating.”

– Shari Stamps, Navigating Parenthood​