If you are a parent, you probably would have enjoyed the sight of watching your children play. As they play, children interact with the world around them, asking questions, experimenting with forms and ideas, and ending with a whole lot of mess for you to clean up. It is worth it, is what I imagine every satisfied parent would say.
Playing is essential for children to expand their imagination beyond what they can touch and feel. Children develop a curiosity to learn about their surroundings, especially when unfamiliar objects such as toys are placed in their hands.
This makes playing a powerful tool to understand the world as a hands-on experience can teach a lot more than a textbook. As the best CBSE school in Hyderabad, our school emphasizes the importance of play in learning. Researchers and educators have found that play can help develop critical skills such as inquiry, expression, experimentation, and teamwork.
What is meaningful play?
According to the book, From Play to Practice: Connecting Teachers' Play to Children's Learning, the meaningful play has five characteristics:
For those familiar with Montessori education, meaningful play accelerates learning by making children active participants. Children are encouraged to interact with each other based on activities given to them.
Having a set of playful activities with flexible boundaries teaches kids how to work collaboratively for a common purpose and volunteer and understand leadership roles. This active, pleasurable negotiation of rules and symbols can offer several learning benefits.
Why is Play Important in the Classroom?
Learning is not limited to developing mental functions. A full-body activity such as running, dancing, climbing, rolling fosters muscle development and fine-tune motor skills. At the best CBSE school in Hyderabad, we do all these physical activities in the curriculum from a young age.
University of Denver researchers Elena Bodrova, Carrie Germeroth, and Deborah J. Leong found that children learn to regulate their emotions by themselves and think before they act during play. Through the game rules, children will learn to make associations with more significant aspects of life.
For teachers, too, learning through play is a means to teach basic learning structures with end goals, albeit playfully. This approach can produce an educational experience that is greater than the sum of its parts.
Teachers should allow students to bring stories to life through dramatization. Playing gives the opportunity to ask questions, work together, solve problems and conduct structured experiments.
At the best CBSE school in Hyderabad, learning is not just a formal activity that is limited to the classroom; it's a lot of fun!
Let me leave you with some questions that you can ask your children during play to help them learn through what they interact with.