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What is Play?

This activity introduces the key ideas that there is a type of play that is natural to children and humans. This has evolved as a part of human nature and culture, which is satisfying and very productive for developing relationships, sharing learning, trying things out checking shared understanding in a space where people know we are ‘just playing’. This is crucial to the arguments that follow about making sure that preschool and early school experiences continue to nurture rather than block out this type of learning.

After reflecting on what you have read above, use your portfolio to complete the following task:

  • Make a list of different kinds of play activities try to sort them into types of play.
  • What things do the types of play have in common and what makes them different?
  • Are any of them not really play?
  • Here are some to start you off:
    • Playing golf, Playing Hamlet, Playing Houses, Playing Shop, Playing in the Sand, Playing in the garden, Playing Hide and Seek, Playing with your hair, Playing with your food, Playing a part.