Friday, September 12, 2014

Work as Play

The children in cohort 6 have been very interested not just in the work that adults do but in replicating it in their own ways.  We offer open ended experiences and materials, which they have turned into many games which mimic the work of an adult or at least their perceived version of it.  The children use play as a way to explore this concept of work as well as feeling as if they are contributing to their environment, the social structures and caring for themselves.  Play allows them to experiment, inquire and explore their definitions of work and find their own natural interests.

"I'm hammering!  On the blocks, see?" S, 23 months

"I need to do some sweeping, Briana!  Can I have a broom?" E, 2 years

"See!  They're the same.  And I made them into towers." C, 2.5 years

"I'm making your coffee for you, Briana. Are you still thirsty?"  Z, 2 years

"I'm making soup for everyone.  See there's cups for everyone." V 2.5 years

"When I work really really really hard, then my hands feel strong!" H, 2.5 years

The observations and experiences the children have by choosing their own work and play, through the conversations we have later and the extensions I offer to support their interests provide a rich environment that is fun, challenging and interesting.  The children feel ownership over their work and pride and even satisfaction as they play. 

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