Play Based Learning
‘’Play-based learning appeals to children’s natural curiosity and desire to engage in experiences based on their interests, strengths and developing skills as they make sense of their world around them ‘’(‘’ The Benefits of Play-Based Learning’’, 2017, para.3). The play-based curriculum encourages children to explore and discover new ideas and challenge them to do it in a better way. Play-based learning allows for open-ended materials and loose parts to be arranged and experimented with in a variety of different ways.
Creativity and Child’s Imagination
Play-based learning is an inquiry-based curriculum in which children are motivated to explore, investigate and create new things with their imagination and ideas. By creativity, we mean the art of creating something using imagination but where imagination is the set of ideas that can be unreal also (Dennis, 2017, para.4). For instance, children in the classroom may be playing pretend play in which they imagine themselves as different characters and they create a play by their imagination. In a play-based approach, children are encouraged for free play and children use their imagination to create different ideas in various areas. Those areas are Block area, Music, Language, and Literacy.
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Creative children are progressively inquisitive about the world and have better relational abilities. They will, in general, become progressively free, as they can take care of their issues, and they are bound to have increasingly improved psychological capacities, especially with regards to language use(‘’EDUCATION’’, 2018, para. 3). So, all in all, we can say that children should be encouraged to use their imaginative skills to explore different things as it is beneficial for children to investigate.
Creativity in different Areas
Creativity and Practical Life
The practical life of the children depends upon various factors such as Education, Family, and Society. Children feel low self-esteemed if they do not get motivation by adults and as a result, they cannot think creatively and may get upset with their lifestyles. So if children like to do something, we should encourage their thoughts and provide them with materials so that they can innovate what they want. For example, if a child likes painting buy them different paints and paint boards to facilitate their interests (‘’EDUCATION’’, 2018, para.8).
Creativity and Sensorial Activities
Sensory activities facilitate exploration and naturally encourage children to use scientific processes while they play, create, investigate and explore. Through sensory exploration children can develop good social skills and fine motor skills.
Literacy and Creativity
Language and literacy is the very basic need of every human being. When children are involved in reading books they might relate pictures to their own life and develop literacy skills by sharing of ideas.
Creativity and Cultural Activities
Cultural activities are the activities that tell us about the concepts in a particular culture. For example, we can celebrate Halloween by wearing masks. In this way, we can tell children about why we celebrate Halloween.
Creative Areas in the Classroom
The art area is the most creative in the classroom. In this area, children are provided with open art shelves, papers, scissors, crayons, markers, paint, and other artistic materials. In the play-based curriculum, children are encouraged to show their creativity without any interruption. During my placement, my classroom teacher used to give children paintbrushes and paper to create something rather than filling the paint inside the pictures.
Music and Movement
In this area, children are provided with different sorts of instruments that are safe in use. I think through music children enjoy and relax their minds. In addition to this, when children use different types of instruments they get to know about cultural instruments that are used in different cultures. We can see children dancing with music which indicates that children know how to regulate and coordinate their bodies.
In this area, children have a variety of books. Most of the children may not know how to read but introducing a library in the classroom help them to understand the concept of alphabets and numbers. I have seen children pretending to read a book to their peers during my placement but in reality, they relate themselves to the images given in the books.
The dramatic area is the area in which children pretend to be some characters. Children use their imagination to create situations and characters for the dramatic play. This area helps them to get positive self-esteem.
Children like to play with blocks. They make different structures with blocks. There are different types of blocks for every age group. Block area is the area in which children used to play most of the time in my experience.
How Play-Based Approach Support Creativity?
Play-based learning is a child-centered philosophy. Children learn through play as they get involved in different areas as they want according to their interests. ‘’Undirected play allows children to learn how to work in groups, to share, to negotiate, to resolve conflicts, and to learn self-advocacy skills’’(‘’The Benefits of Play’’, 2007, para. 1).
A play-based curriculum is child-centered so it allows the child to make choices and works according to children's interests. Children participate more when they are interested. During my placement experience, children liked to dance to music so my teacher used to make at least one activity each day based on music.
Music & Movement
The music area is the area which is liked by every age group. During my placement, I have seen children enjoying music. Some of them were used to just dance on music whether some like to play some instruments with the flow of rhythm. It is a good way to start the day and enjoy it.
Arts & Crafts
Open art shelves are provided in the play-based approach so that children can do things in an open-ended manner. In my experience, children like to play with paint and they find it very interesting to stamp their handprints on paper.
It is the area in which children demonstrate themselves as independent individuals while playing the roles. For instance, a girl pretending to be a mother and feeding her baby child or cooking in the kitchen area.
The library in the classroom plays a very crucial role in childhood literacy. Children used to enjoy circle time and singing poems along with educators in my placement. Through singing and reading rhymes children learn new vocabulary words.
- Guardian Childcare & Education. (2017, April 11). The Benefits of Play Based Learning. Retrieved from https://www.guardian.edu.au/blog/benefits-play-based-learning/
- Dennis, D. (2017, September 29). Is There a Difference Between Creativity and Imagination? Retrieved from https://writingcooperative.com/is-there-a-difference-between-creativity-and-imagination-358c2a9c6e9a
- Kids on the Coast. (2018, May 28). EDUCATION: The importance of the imagination and creativity Retrieved fromhttps://kidsonthecoast.com.au/read/education/article/education-the-importance-of-the-imagination-and-creativity
- Kaplan Early Learning Company. (n.d.). Preschool Classroom Layout [Photograph]. Retrieved from https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/540150549048988216/?lp=true
- The American Academy of Pediatrics. (2007). The Importance of Play in Promoting Healthy Child Development and Maintaining Strong Parents and child bonds. Retrieved from https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/119/1/182
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