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Learning Through Play

Talking about learning through play

Gemma Cormie

on 22 June 2015

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Transcript of Learning Through Play

Why Play is Necessary
"The shorter the childhood, the less flexible the brain" Bruce (2004)
Play Discussion ...
The work of Jean Piaget.....
"When children are introduced to formal
learning too soon, they may learn knowledge and skills at the expense of the disposition to use it. One of the most important dispositions for children is that of interest and the capacity to become absorbed in, and sustain intellectual engagement with complex uncertainties. This happens when children are engaged in play."
Fabian, H (2002) Contextualised Learning for 5-8 year olds LTS.
Be committed to the value of play on a daily basis

Ensure there is careful planning and organisation of the environment

Exciting continuous provision
Learning through Play
"Play is the way children integrate and bring together what they know, understand and feel as a whole" Froebel
Today we will look at:
Play based theorists/research
Indicators of play
The power of play!
As facilitators we should....
Play discussion (Teachers TV)
As practitioners, we should...
Swiss Theorist who studied his own children
Showed that infants are not passive but actively gain meaning from all experiences demonstrating that children are 'active learners'
Children display schemas (or patterns of behaviour that are generalisable)
Schema examples: envelopment, transporting, rotation, circular, linear
Lev Vygotsky
Children work at a higher level when offered help
'Zone of proximal development' (represents the child's potential)
Saw the role of adults as crucial
Bruner was inspired by Vygotsky and popularized the idea of 'scaffolding' to describe how adults help children
Influential Theorists....
Donaldson, Bruce
The Reggio Emilia Approach!
Indicators of play
Builds confidence and self-esteem
Encourages independent learning and thinking
Encourages children to co-operate with others
Develops children's language, creativity, problem solving skills
Allows children to use and develop their skills in meaningful contexts (acquire, transfer, practise)
Enables children to take risks
Keeps children active
Gives children the chance to enjoy their learning
What can play do?
1. Children use first hand experiences that they have in life.
2. Children make up rules as they go along when they play.
3. Children often use their representations as play props in their play.
4. Children will choose to play. They cannot be made to play.
5. Children rehearse the future.
6. Children pretend when they play.
7. A child might play alone.
8. children might play together: parallel; associatively; cooperatively
9. There will be a play agenda for each person playing. If adults join the play, their agenda is no more important than that of the children.
10. Children playing will be deeply involved - difficult to distract them.
11. Children try out recently acquired skills.
12. When playing they are coordinating their ideas and feelings they have....making sense of them.
Indicators of play continued...
Taken from Bruce, T (1996) Helping young children to play. London: Hodder & Staughton
Take skilled observations of children's activities to facilitate assessment and planning for progression (meaningful, demonstrates learning, moving learning forward)

For example:
Maria is unsettled due to the arrival of the new baby at home: set up a baby clinic in class?
Darren is interested in circles: Add circular shapes to the construction?

Provide time for children to develop play

Model how to play!
How do you know a child is playing?
Create exciting play experiences for your children!

Splish Splash
Come with me to the Carribean
The child is made of one hundred.
The child has
a hundred languages
a hundred hands
a hundred thoughts
a hundred ways of thinking
of playing, of speaking.

A hundred.

Always a hundred
ways of listening
of marveling, of loving
a hundred joys
for singing and understanding
a hundred worlds
to discover
a hundred worlds
to invent
a hundred worlds
to dream.

The child has
a hundred languages
(and a hundred hundred hundred more)
but they steal ninety-nine.
The school and the culture
separate the head from the body.
They tell the child:
to think without hands
to do without head
to listen and not to speak
to understand without joy
to love and to marvel
only at Easter and at Christmas.

They tell the child:
to discover the world already there
and of the hundred
they steal ninety-nine.

They tell the child:
that work and play
reality and fantasy
science and imagination
sky and earth
reason and dream
are things
that do not belong together.

And thus they tell the child
that the hundred is not there.
The child says:
No way. The hundred is there.

-Loris Malaguzzi
Founder of the Reggio Emilia Approach
Full transcript