Heuristic play
Enjoyable play from the first months


Scientists have now confirmed something that children have always instinctively known; playing in mud is a joyful experience. Recent research has shown that dirt contains microscopic bacteria that stimulates the immune system and increases the levels of serotonin in our brains, an endorphin that...
Written by Jan White and published by Muddy Faces, Making a Mud Kitchen offers 32 pages of gorgeous photos and inspiring ideas.
From infancy to adulthood, people enjoy sand and water. Young children like to play with sand and water and find such play satisfying.
Heuristic play is rooted in young children’s natural curiosity. As babies grow they move beyond being content to simply feel and ponder objects, to wanting to find out what can be done with them.
Mud is an art medium, one that we can mold, dry, and decorate. Unlike many other media, mud permits us to make mistakes.
Babies love to play and some bought play resources can be very useful. However, many suitable play items do not need to be purchased.
The beauty of sand is one of the few manipulatives that truly allows children to explore their imaginations.
Traditionally the sand area has provided opportunities for manipulation, construction, and discovery as children experiment with pouring, digging, and mixing sand with water.
‘A Froebelian approach is… a whole way of thinking about children and childhood’, Helen Tovey writes.
Sit down with your group of children and read the famous book of Bartholomew and the Oobleck by Dr Seuss. Then wheel in a sand and water tray...

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