Play is a powerful tool for teachers and kids alike for engaging young minds in learning and social skills.
As children spend most of their time in school, play and learning should go hand in hand and should be integrated throughout the day.
A carefully planned classroom environment is a good way to start. Children need an area which is large enough where two or more peers can join in to play together.
Simple, but yet stimulating materials should be included as it will enhance and entice children into playing. Organising materials on the shelves and in the bins will helps the children to see clearly what their choices are and it will also give the children the opportunities to think and plan on how to carry out their play.
Providing enough time is one of the key task that the educators and schools should do. Children needs time to develop play scenarios, get organised and then carry out their play. But most of the time, children don’t get enough time to engage with the play long enough to develop the skills that they need before they are ask to either move on to next play or keep the materials away.
The educator’s role when it comes to play is more of a facilitator than of a educator. Instead of just giving the children knowledge by telling them what to do, you as a facilitator, introduce play themes, provide diversity materials, and helping children to expand on what they already know.
“He does it with his hands, by experience, first in play and then through work. The hands are the instruments of man’s intelligence.” – Maria Montessori
Go on now, set the environment, provide the time, and let the children play.