Happy Christmas from all of us at Community Playthings!
In this new 3-minute video, Hal Melnick and other educators explain why every early years setting and school that is serious about STEM education needs to have a strong block play component in their curriculum.
When they play, children use trial and error to explore, hypothesize and test their thinking.
It is not just physical maturation that enables 2-year-olds to develop coordination and dexterity, it is also their insatiable appetite to explore and play.
“Children have a natural urge to do the same thing again and again…this is a vitally important element in young children’s development and learning.
“Jimmy found it incredibly difficult to sit comfortably at the table; he was a right fidget-bottom, moving about trying to get into a comfortable position. He also found it difficult to grasp the thin pencil in the correct manner and write on a small piece of paper. He was struggling...” Read more.
“It’s okay for children to get dirty...it’s not just okay, it’s important,” writes Michelle Rupiper. Read article: http://www.communityplaythings.co.uk/learning-library/articles/mud-marvellous-mud
Having more stuff certainly does not make children happier and often stifles imagination. Educational consultant Sandra Duncan refers to this as “mental clatter” which has a “negative impact on children’s growth and development – and especially their behaviours.”
Open maths, open minds. An article on the concept of Open Maths by Elizabeth Carruthers:
Join us in observing how children discover, develop and learn through play, and how creative practitioners use our products to encourage that discovery
“The teacher just informed me that my three-year-old boy isn’t the ‘perfect fit’. They say he’s too active,” the lady related over the phone. “Is there something wrong with him?” Angela Hanscom, a paediatric occupational therapist, was shocked. “My blood boils at the notion that something is wrong with an active three-year-old boy,” she writes. “We are expecting children to sit still when they are just barely out of nappies?”
“Amongst the many uncertainties of the modern world, several indisputable global facts about the health, well-being and learning of young children are beginning to emerge,” write Pam Mundy and Sue Egersdorff, co-directors of International Early Years.
“Water is one of the basic raw materials for purposeful play. Just like sand, clay and blocks, children can use water without being constrained by the one right way to use it,” writes Sandra Crosser, Ph.D.
There is more than meets the eye to a child's play...