Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Value of Play
From the Washington Post (read the full article)

With increasing pressure on early-childhood education programs to promote math and literacy skills, educators are debating the value of play in preschool and early elementary grades. "Play is problem-solving," said one Virginia educator. "It's really critical life skills." While some studies show that students who attended play-based preschool programs develop better socially and emotionally later in life, time for play is increasingly being pushed aside for more instruction aimed at achieving higher test scores.

A interesting article that is worth a read.

Monday, November 16, 2009

David Elkin -"The Wisdom of Play"
I am staying with my son and family in New london, Connecticut, USA. I came across this free (in USA) booklet introduced by David Elkind.
...."Clearly, play serves a very different function for children than it does for adults. For children, it is a way to learn about self and the world through self-created experiences. That is one reason child-initiated play is so important and why it should not be replaced either by adult-organised sports or by academic activities disguised as games."

Sunday, November 15, 2009

..time to play
..time to create
..time to discover

"Features of the natural world children explore with their senses by day, they play with in their dreams at night, and turn into poetry when they wake."
-William C. Crain

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Remember your science and technology resources!

Have a look in your science resource room for equipment to bring out in Discovery Time.
Lenses, prisms, mirrors.coloured plastics!
What about electric circuits, light bulbs, switches, bells!
The possibilities are endless.

Friday, November 13, 2009

'Play Time - The Game of Learning.'
author -Trish Konzak.
Read this interesting article on the Edutopia site or google Trish Konzak.
She is passionate about the importance of play and her worry that testing and teaching for testing will take over.
Other books she recommends - ( I haven't previewed them )
  • 'The Power of Play.' David Elkind.
  • 'Play: How it Shapes the Brain, opens the imagination and Invigorates the Soul.' Dr Stuart Brown.
  • 'A Child's Work - The Importance of Fantasy Play.' Vivian Gussin Paley.
  • 'A Place for Play.' Elizabeth Goodenough.
  • 'Play, Development and Early Education.' James E Johnson, James F Christi, and Francis Wardle.
  • 'Play: The Pathway from Theory to Practice.' Sandra Heidemann,and Deborah Hewitt.

Let us know how you feel about these authors.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Creativity and the camera

I hope you have all seen the Groovy Girl dolls we love. I am in USA at the moment and couldn't resist buying 5 new dolls!
Try putting out a box of small fabric scraps, ribbons, trims etc, plus velcro and then watch the fashion designers create!

Give them the camera and see the fun!

Using play mobile characters to explore animation is fun too. Add some scenery: twigs, blocks, stones lego -anything!

Creating characters from modeling clay is also magic.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Getting Started with Discovery Time

"OK ! Lets go to Space!"

It has been a lot of fun getting Discovery Time underway at Pukerua Bay School.

Their first key competency focus was -'working together',but we found not enough activities required co-operation. We are all learning!

The second week was -'challenge yourself' and wow, they sure did.

Black paper and shish kebab sticks soon became shadow puppets. With the sun streaming in through the shade curtains the children quickly created their own theatre stage - how's that for creative thinking?

The class camera was used to record their own space rescue drama. The teacher was impressed with the child that self appointed herself as narrator.