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Jensen, H. et al. () Play facilitation: the science behind the art of engaging young children (Journal Article)

Pyle, A. et al. () A Continuum of Play-Based Learning: The Role of the Teacher in Play-Based Pedagogy and the Fear of Hijacking Play (Web Page)

Pyle, A. et al. (2017) A Continuum of Play-Based Learning: The Role of the Teacher in Play-Based Pedagogy and the Fear of Hijacking Play (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Research Findings: Research has demonstrated the developmental and educational benefits of play. Despite these benefits, teacher-directed academic instruction is prominent in kindergarten. There is increasing acknowledgment in curricula and policies of the challenges presented by a lack of play in classrooms and the need to support academic learning using developmentally appropriate practices. Current research emphasizes a narrow definition of play-based learning as a child-directed practice, resulting in teacher uncertainty about the implementation of this pedagogical approach. Fifteen kindergarten classrooms were examined using qualitative methodology, including observations and teacher interviews. Two different teacher profiles emerged: The 1st profile saw play and learning as separate constructs and reported challenges meeting academic demands using play-based learning. Their students primarily engaged in free play. The 2nd profile believed that play could support academic learning and that teachers fill an important role in play. Their students engaged in 5 different types of play, situated along a continuum from child directed to more teacher directed. Practice or Policy: The continuum of play-based learning provides a broader and more concrete definition of play-based learning to help teachers implement this pedagogical approach and to enhance the study of play-based learning in early years research.

Author/s:
Date:
January 2017
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
28
Page/s:
274-289
Synonyms:
  • Academic outcomes
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Free play
  • Games with rules
  • Guided-play
  • Learning
  • Pedagogy
  • Playful learning
  • Pretend play
  • Qualitative methodology
Relevant age group/s:

Pyle, A. et al. (2017) A scoping review of research on play-based pedagogies in kindergarten education (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Across a number of countries, play-based learning is the mandated pedagogy in early years’ curricula. However, a lack of consensus remains both in research and practice regarding the value and role of play in children's learning. This scoping review analyses 168 articles addressing play-based learning for 4–5 year old children divided into three categories: research on play for developmental learning, research on play for academic learning and factors influencing play in kindergarten classrooms. Much of the research endorsed play as fulfilling an important role in early learning. However, two disparate perspectives concerning the role of play for developmental versus academic learning demonstrate different orientations towards the value and potential benefits of play. Research focused on developmental learning endorsed the use of free play and a passive teacher role, while research focused on academic learning endorsed teacher-directed and mutually directed play where the teacher fulfills an active play role. A similar lack of consensus was found among research with educators regarding the role and benefits of play. These findings indicate a need to move away from a binary stance regarding play and towards an integration of perspectives and practices, with different types of play perceived as complementary rather than incompatible.

Date:
January 2017
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
5
Page/s:
311-351
Synonyms:
  • Academic outcomes
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Free play
  • Guided-play
  • Learning
  • Literature review
  • Pedagogy
  • Pretend play
  • Self-regulation
  • Social-emotional
Relevant age group/s:
Abstract:
Date:
January 2017
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
5
Page/s:
311-351
Keyword/s:
Synonyms:
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline: