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Old 02-26-2012, 10:42 AM
 
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There has been a lot in the news in recent weeks about the importance of play. The amount of time that children have for free play has decreased over the years and the type of play has changed from more free form to more structured. Kindergarten has become much less play based and much more academic. I've heard many parents and teachers describe it as the new first grade. I'm interested in hearing people's thoughts on this.

Old-Fashioned Play Builds Serious Skills : NPR
Quote:
It turns out that all that time spent playing make-believe actually helped children develop a critical cognitive skill called executive function. Executive function has a number of different elements, but a central one is the ability to self-regulate. Kids with good self-regulation are able to control their emotions and behavior, resist impulses, and exert self-control and discipline
BBC News - Forest play aids nursery children's mediation skills
Quote:
A trial of outdoor learning in the woods designed to promote independent play in nursery children led to them learning to solve disputes themselves.
Seriously! | the future depends on play

All Work and No Play: Why Your Kids Are More Anxious, Depressed - Esther Entin - Health - The Atlantic
Quote:
An article in the most recent issue of the American Journal of Play details not only how much children's play time has declined, but how this lack of play affects emotional development, leading to the rise of anxiety, depression, and problems of attention and self control.
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Old 02-26-2012, 11:15 AM
 
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Again, look at Finland where kids have 75 minutes of recess and the play is unstructured. It would benefit our kids if our schools would increase recess time instead of decreasing it. It would also benefit our kids if there was more unstructured play and less adult coached sports time. Teams and sports have their place, but really we do way too much of it way too early.
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Old 02-26-2012, 11:45 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
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I'm sure a lot of parents out there have noticed their kids don't seem to be outside playing as much as we did when we were kids......What the heck....I think I'll just start another thread on this.....

Kids not playing outside as much anymore
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Old 02-26-2012, 02:48 PM
 
Location: North America
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*Reads this while reading on iPad,texting,and watching TV* I'm sorry, what did you say?
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Old 02-26-2012, 03:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by nana053 View Post
Again, look at Finland where kids have 75 minutes of recess and the play is unstructured. It would benefit our kids if our schools would increase recess time instead of decreasing it. It would also benefit our kids if there was more unstructured play and less adult coached sports time. Teams and sports have their place, but really we do way too much of it way too early.
I think schools should be just for learning...play is for at home.....no-one but the parents should be responsible to see that your child gets enough playtime.....
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Old 02-26-2012, 03:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by purehuman View Post
I think schools should be just for learning...play is for at home.....no-one but the parents should be responsible to see that your child gets enough playtime.....
Children need breaks from the hard work of sitting and learning. Just like adults who need coffee breaks (relatively short) or other breaks during the day, kids need time to destress and play is that time.

Aside from that with preschool and elementary school, children actually learn more through play than they do through any of the academic stuff schools do now.

Note that Finland comes in number one or number two on the international tests every year since they changed their system to one allowing more playtime and less testing and less grading.
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Old 02-26-2012, 04:41 PM
 
Location: North America
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Originally Posted by nana053 View Post
Children need breaks from the hard work of sitting and learning. Just like adults who need coffee breaks (relatively short) or other breaks during the day, kids need time to destress and play is that time.

Aside from that with preschool and elementary school, children actually learn more through play than they do through any of the academic stuff schools do now.

Note that Finland comes in number one or number two on the international tests every year since they changed their system to one allowing more playtime and less testing and less grading.
Perhaps but asian countries like china outscore most western countries, and their curriculum is very rigid. I think there is no magical way on making school programs successful.
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Old 02-26-2012, 05:19 PM
 
Location: WI
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nana053 View Post
Children need breaks from the hard work of sitting and learning. Just like adults who need coffee breaks (relatively short) or other breaks during the day, kids need time to destress and play is that time.

Aside from that with preschool and elementary school, children actually learn more through play than they do through any of the academic stuff schools do now.

Note that Finland comes in number one or number two on the international tests every year since they changed their system to one allowing more playtime and less testing and less grading.
While I agree that Finalnd's educational system is very respectable, many people clearly forget that Finland is a homogenous country with five million people, 60 million times less than the US's- and they have more taxes to fund education. ASPECTS of their system would work here and in other countries, but not all of it.
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Old 02-26-2012, 09:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by purehuman View Post
I think schools should be just for learning...play is for at home.....no-one but the parents should be responsible to see that your child gets enough playtime.....
The articles posted in the OP all talk about the value of play and the many important lessons that children learn from play such as the ability to regulate emotions, behavior, impulses, self discipline and the ability to problem solve. Would you say that these types of lessons are more or less important in the grand scheme of things then learning more traditional school type of lessons such as history, science, math, etc.?
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:36 AM
 
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Dorothy... I do agree with the value of play...very important (for at least all of the reasons you've said...and more).....but I feel that if I put my child into a public institution (school), where traditional lessons "such as history, science, math etc" are a mandatory "curriculum"...then THAT'S what I would want them doing......the type of learning that my child learns "in play"..is something I would want to oversee...not some volunteer lunch-time monitor, that changes everyday....and that I'll never know.....maybe schools should just be for 3-4 hours instead of 6-7.....since they supposedly can teach our children the basics, and have so much extra time left over for "play".
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