Active play

In early simple dramatic play, children begin to represent concrete actions they have done themselves such as eating their dinner, or seen others do such as driving a car. Moving into more complex socio-dramatic play, however, brings additional cognitive challenges that further develop thinking...
Early childhood educators tell me a lot of stories when I keynote or train. And since I’ve been speaking and training for almost four decades, you can imagine just how many stories there have been. Lately, though, I keep hearing the same three stories from teachers throughout the country.
One challenge we face is that some of the questions children ask are linked to unobservable phenomena such as death, decay and disappearance. It is these aspects of connection to the natural world that are often the least well-defined, but they can be the ones that fascinate children.
Collaboration, creativity, imagination, inventiveness, problem-solving, coordination, physical strength – when children are given the space and time to freely play outdoors, truly the whole child is able to grow.
Regardless of SEN, many children find paying attention a key challenge. A number of proactive strategies can help, such as allowing the use of sensory-rich resources to provide feedback; providing quiet spaces to sit in calmly and take time out; minimising other distractions; and using attractive...
Did you ride bicycles around the block and play Hide-and-Seek outside with friends until you were called inside for dinner? These experiences helped us develop our senses and taught us to self-regulate our actions, preparing us ultimately for the more formal education of school.
So often we when we think of learning we think of paper and pencil. Or maybe we think of watching an educational program or listening to an engaging speaker. It’s important as parents and caregivers to know that movement, and especially movement in free play, is a major contributor to brain growth.
In this final article of our Model for living series we focus on learning, a much debated aspect of life in the early years. What are we doing to give children access to quality learning experiences, ensuring that they make stage-appropriate steps while allowing them freedom to inquire, explore,...
Role play is how children make sense of their world, acting out experiences, ideas or stories. Here’s how role play can incorporate all seven EYFS areas of learning and development.
In this fourth article of the Model for Living series we explore play and playfulness, which are key dynamics in early childhood development.

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