The advantages of play way method of teaching are manifold and can have a very constructive impact in the lives of children not only through their developmental years but also during their adult life too. That’s why it becomes important for not only teachers and educators but also parents and caregivers too.
In this article:
- Importance of Integrating Play into Early Childhood Education Curriculum
- The Play Way Method of Teaching
- Importance of Play Way Method in Teaching
- The Principles of Play Way Method of Teaching
- Integrating Play Way into Various Curriculum
- The Play Way Approach to Enhance Communication Skills
Each of these approaches or methods have their own philosophies and way of learning. Play can be weaved into any of the methods that is being followed in an early childhood education centres.
Importance of Integrating Play into Early Childhood Education Curriculum
The research on child development conducted by National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and National Research Council (NRC) has always reflected the need to integrate play into the early childhood curriculum.
The relation between play and curriculum has remained open to interpretation, which can effect everyday classroom transactions. The relationship between play and curriculum has been researched from two aspects:
- The use of play materials, play environments or motivation to play as a way to improve instruction for core subjects like mathematics, literacy, science as well as enhance other developmental domains of children.
- Focus on play itself in its various forms and its distinctness in contributing to the overall development of the child, which can have long lasting effect in school and beyond.
There is still need for investigating the relationship between the quality of play and the effect it has on children’s development and learning. Issues still remain at not utilising the power of play to its utmost and hence can result in not bringing out the best in child. Well researched instructional strategies designed to support play is lacking.
Most researchers agree to the fact that including play in the early childhood curriculum is necessary to ensure optimal growth and development of young children.
The Play Way Method of Teaching
One way to look at integrating play into curriculum is the play way method. Friedrich Frobel, who is considered the father of Kindergarten method, conceived the play way method. Children can understand their needs and goals through play.
Therefore it is important to teach children with the help of play way method, a method that can be modified to meet children’s requirements and is a child centred approach.
The 11 Advantages of Play Way Method of Teaching
The following are the 11 advantages of play way method of teaching, which also highlight its importance:
- Play way method makes learning enjoyable and easy
- Every child gets equal opportunity for complete participation
- Develops both knowledge and skills
- Helps in better retention of learning
- Provides more learning opportunities
- Creates a conducing learning environment
- Enhances cognitive abilities
- Helps the child to connect to their teachers more effectively
- Enhances holistic development (cognitive, language, physical, social, emotional and aesthetics)
- Playful learning environment makes transition from home to school easier for the child
- Helps create bond with teachers and other children
The Principles of Play Way Method of Teaching
The five principles of play way method of teaching are:
- Learning experiences are given through playful activities, because they are very relaxing, creative and interesting
- All learning experiences should happen in an open and free atmosphere without any restrictions
- The method of imparting knowledge must be informal and natural, and must suit the needs and interests of children
- Children must enjoy the learning process to the fullest
- Children should actively participate in the learning process and must be responsible for their own development
Integrating Play Way into Various Curriculum
The play way method of teaching in kindergarten is one of the earliest play way method where the school is regarded as a garden, the teacher is a gardener and the children are beautiful plants and flowers who must be tended with care.
Gifts, which includes six sets of cubes, spheres and cylinders, are specialised objects designed by Frobel which enhances learning.
The Montessori method uses didactic apparatus, which provides sensorial stimulation, playful activities and exercises.
The Dalton Plan method is another playful method for older children who are allowed to work independently on their own through play. Children are allowed to work at their own free will and learn at their own pace.
The Waldorf method involves the children involving in long term projects learning at their own pace and being close to nature.
The Play Way Approach to Enhance Communication Skills
Language is an important part of communication. Communication is a two-way process involving both verbal and non-verbal communications.
Respectful communication with children involves reciprocating careful listening, giving appropriate responses and contributing to the conversations.
Knowing a child, his/her interests, skills and family experiences can facilitate communication better. Understanding children’s way of thinking and reasoning, supporting development, especially in the areas of communication cognition and socialisation can enhance communication skills in children.
Non-verbal communication is equally important and can be initiated with just born babies as well with older children. Making gurgling noises, gestures and facial expressions are ways of having non-verbal communication.
Older children who are not ready to converse can be pulled into conversations by acknowledging and responding to a child’s body language. Pointing, clapping and making sounds like animals adds excitement to non-verbal forms of communication.
Play is a way by which children learn about the world. Children play with their peers, adults and other children, which in turn teaches them to socialise, solve problems. There are many research studies that prove that play also helps communicate by using language effectively.
Through play, children learn new skills and language is one such important skill they learn while at play. Children learn to play with language and play with vocabulary.
If there is one thing that needs to be highlighted as regards the advantages of play way method of teaching, it is the fact that it helps children build skills – especially language and social skills.
Human beings are fundamentally social animals. But to be a valuable part of the society and contribute, language and social skills are key, and that’s where play plays an incredibly significant development part during the early childhood phase of children.
Disclaimer: The content in this page and across this website are for informational and educational purposes only. In case of any concerns about your child’s growth and development, please contact your professional child healthcare provider.