My chosen topic for this term is Play. Play can be divided in so many ways. I had subdivisions of Benefits of physical development, Benefits of outdoor play, and environmental benefits of play. I am not sure if I can do this, but I am making my subdivision: Play towards Healthy development.
If I look at Brown & Vaughn, play is a biological drive, just as health, sleep or nutrition. Play has profound implications for child development and the way we parent, education, social policy and even the future of our society (Brown & Vaughan, 2010). New research keeps on suggesting what a direct role play does to help shape our brains and also the effects of the lack of play. Brown & Vaughan suggests that play might be the most important work we can ever do and I could not agree more.
Play can sometimes be considered elusive regarding application and practice because it is not measurable. You do not apply or practice play. It is a natural state. Amon makes a correlation between play and being in a “deep creative state” dubbed “flow” (Amon, 2002, p. 8). Play could appear to not have value to anyone who does not understand human and child development. Play by character is free of form, has an appearance of un-orderliness and a front of no adults in control. In some cases, play does have a bad reputation. To the untrained eye, children are not learning unless an adult is showing them something of educational value and for this reason, theorists have done lots and lots of research to prove this bias wrong.
As much as we think we know about play, we can always learn more. The benefits that involve play and healthy development has a strong bond. I feel like I can read for hours about topics that show and explain the healthy benefits of play. Forming my simulation might seem easy at first, as play research has been done everywhere. However, my skill of fishing out the correct research is what will make my task even harder – the amount of play research. My subtopic can be divided into a million other subtopics too.
Play is such an important part of our children’s life. If you have any advice on a focus point you know needs to be researched or anything that interests you as well, I might be able to narrow down what I am looking for too.
….and of course…any websites that you have used before and loved using…please leave a comment =)
Amon, K. (2002). The vital role of play in early childhood education. Gateways, 43. Retrieved from http://www.waldorfresearchinstitute.org/pdf/BAPlayAlmon.pdf
Brown, S., & Waughan, C. (2010). Play: How it shapes the brain, opens the imagination, and invigorates the soul. New York, NY: Penguin Group.