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Play as a vehicle for learning

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Play as a vehicle for learning

‘Play is a way for children to learn without realising they’re learning. They’re building those foundational skills through a fun, enjoyable, engaging experience …’

In his latest Teacher video Greg Whitby, Executive Director of Schools in the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta, speaks to Donna Harding about play-based learning in the early years.

Harding, Director and Educational Leader of the Catholic Early Learning Centre in Blacktown, New South Wales, says: ‘I think there’s a misconception of play as being frivolous activity and of no particular importance, but I think we need to shift the thinking into play as a vehicle for learning for children.’

She also discusses the importance of building relationships between early childhood, primary and secondary settings to support student transitions and create a strong a vibrant education sector. ‘I think we need to come together as a collective of educators, as opposed to saying “I’m an early childhood teacher”, “I’m a primary school teacher” or “I’m a secondary school teacher”.’

WATCH VIDEO

How are you building relationships with educators from different schools to support transitions?

As a classroom practitioner or school leader, how are you engaging with parents and families?

When planning play-based activities, what are the foundational skills you want students to develop?

Millie 03 May 2018

Is there a benefit to learning without ‘realising’ you’re learning? The, not uncommon sentiment, in Whitby’s statement, to me implies that fun and enjoyment are separate from learning. I frequently talk to the children at my centre in a way that I hope makes them recognise their learning, am I doing them a disservice, or lessening their fun?

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