AbstractPlay plays an essential role for the kids in the Early Childhood Classroom as it enhances their development. Through play, children can acquire some skills that can help them in learning and solve several problems that they face in life. Also, natural selection designs children to play, and play is a distinct mode of doing and thinking. From the research conducted, it is evident that play is important for kids in the Early Childhood Classroom since it helps them control their emotions, correlating, promoting kids' education, learning to interact with peers, and developing high Inhibitory Control skills.
Introduction and Background
According to Kohn (2015), in the past, the kids in kindergarten, first and second grade, and preschool spent most of their time playing. The activities they conducted included drawing imaginary worlds and building blocks with their classmates, unfortunately, currently, these activities have been abandoned and currently, teachers take the lead by dictating instruction as used in the higher grades. In most of the current school's formal education commences at 4 or 5 years and it is believed that without the early start then kids may remain behind in important subjects including math and reading and they might never catch up. The idea of this approach is that commencing early means learning more.
The argument of starting formal education at an early stage has been challenged by a group of educators, education researchers, and scientists since there is little evidence that shows that the approach improves long-term achievement (Kohn, 2015). Also, some researchers argue that early instruction in areas like reading might help some kids in the Early Childhood Classroom but the boost is only temporary. According to Rebecca Marcon who is a psychology professor, early didact instruction for Early Childhood classrooms can worsen the academic performance of the kids (Kohn, 2015). David Whitebread perceives play as immature behavior that does not achieve anything. He further argues that even though it is an immature behavior it is important for the development of kids as it helps them learn to control their attention, emotions, and persevere.
According to Lillart et al. (2013), pretend play is essential in the healthy development of kids. Pretend play results in positive developments and it is regarded as an epiphenomenon of the other factors driving development. Furthermore, pretend play relates and helps in correlating. Through this, the kids in early childhood education can be open-minded in solving the issues they might face while growing up. Playing is considered an essential contributor to a kid's physical, social, emotional, and cognitive development (Lillart et al., 2013). Watching the children play looks like a significant activity as they engage in several processes. Furthermore, for the children in preschool, pretend play assists them to learn on the issue of separating referent from objects. It helps them to understand that actions might be separated from reality and might base on a given situation's meaning.
PK-3 program plays a significant role in a kid's development (Stipek et al., 2017). Parents also play an essential role in the learning of early childhood education kids. In promoting the education of the kids in preschool, it is important to point out that play has a significant role in the development of the kids. While kids can play in schools and even interact with other kids, teachers can also send the parents messages on the activities that the kids can complete as they play at home including talking to other children about what they learn in school and playing math games (Stipek et al., 2017). Math games can help the kids in kindergarten to progress in their grades and develop their skills. These processes can be completed using community resources at home and school.
Child-Centered Play Therapy has a positive impact on the disruptive behavior of the kids in elementary school. The children who grow up in poverty-stricken areas do have several disadvantages and they have high risks of failing in school (Cochran & Cochran, 2017). Therefore, without engaging in playing while in elementary schools, these kids might continue with misery in adulthood and this might make them engage in physical health, violence, and serious mental issues. Through playing, kids in elementary school can have great IC skills that give them the chance of inhibiting their urges of engaging in behavior that is counterproductive to the management of a classroom (Perry et al., 2018). Kids with high Inhibitory Control (IC) have high possibilities of having a great teacher-child relationship as they can be managed easily and perform well in the coming classes. Playing is encouraged in all schools for the kids in elementary school as it helps them learn how to interact with their peers and solve the issues they face while playing in the best way (Cochran & Cochran, 2017).
In summary, play should be allowed to the kids in elementary school. From the articles written by different researchers, the findings indicate that play helps in improving the knowledge and skills of kids in schools. Thus, even though changes have been made in the new curriculum, more time should be allocated for the kids in kindergarten to get enough playtime.
Cochran, J. L., & Cochran, N. H. (2017). Effects of child-centered play therapy for students with highly-disruptive behavior in high-poverty schools. International Journal of Play Therapy, 26(2), 59.
Kohn, D. (2015). Opinion | Let the Kids Learn Through Play. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/17/opinion/sunday/let-the-kids-learn-through-play.html
Lillard, A. S., Lerner, M. D., Hopkins, E. J., Dore, R. A., Smith, E. D., & Palmquist, C. M. (2013). The impact of pretend play on children's development: A review of the evidence. Psychological Bulletin, 139(1), 1.
Stipek, D., Franke, M., Clements, D., Farran, D., & Coburn, C. (2017). PK-3: What Does It Mean for Instruction? Social Policy Report. Volume 30, Number 2. Society for Research in Child Development.
Perry, N. B., Dollar, J. M., Calkins, S. D., Keane, S. P., & Shanahan, L. (2018). Childhood self-regulation as a mechanism through which early overcontrolling parenting is associated with adjustment in preadolescence. Developmental psychology, 54(8), 1542.
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