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Kindergarten 456

How can we help parents & colleagues understand more about play-based learning?

When we view children, families and educators as competent, capable, curious and rich in experience, we foster reciprocal relationships and opportunities to develop shared understandings of classroom practices, such as play-based learning. The Kindergarten Program 2016 states “it is important for educators to have a clear understanding of play-based learning in Ontario, in order to explain it to families, colleagues, and community partners.” (p. 28).

Play and academic work are not distinct categories for young children. Young children actively engage in their environment through play to make meaning for their world. In Kindergarten classrooms, children learn through play as they explore ideas and language, manipulate objects, act out roles or experiment with open-ended materials. These play-based programs expand on children’s natural curiosity, creativity, and imagination, as well as develop problem-solving, abstract reasoning, collaboration, inquiry and communication skills. As educators interact with children through play, they notice and name the learning and build the foundations for early literacy and mathematics with the children. Educators observe, listen, question, document and guide children to promote their growth as independent learners.

Connections to The Kindergarten Program 2016:

* Fundamental Principles of Play-Based Learning (pp. 12-13)

* Play-based Learning in a Culture of Inquiry (pp. 18-28)

* Communicating with Parents and Families about Play-based Learning (p. 28)

* Misconceptions about Play-based Learning (p. 27)

* Parents and Families (p. 109-112)



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